For me, change is being able to evolve with whatever the conditions to a different dimension and state of understanding. As humans we often find ourselves subjected to an array of emotions, conditions and directions. Nature however, takes its time to adapt to change but eventually catches up to be stronger and more resilient.
We have had a wonderful few days of consistent rain, which was a decent blessing after a scorching two weeks of sunshine during lockdown. What a way for plants and trees to refresh their thirst, by welcoming change in the form of ‘bad weather’ (so we say) and use the opportunity to repair, develop and grow into the lush green that sustains us.
Throughout this rainy spell, there were moments of blinding sunshine trying to catch a glimpse of earth from behind the clouds.
When the rain lifted, my surroundings were rousing themselves to exponential growth. Nitrogen brought down by rainfall makes plants and trees look greener and more vibrant, the oxygen-rich rain saturating the ground and providing reserves for vegetation to live vicariously. Naturally when the sun shines with lushness abound, animals come out from their sheltered spots to play.
I’ve been hitting my forestry and arboriculture books daily and also making sure that despite being a key worker at the moment, I still find time to go on walks. This week has been a mixture of cloud, glorious sunshine and waves of rain, nothing too dissimilar to the usual Spring weather. I’ve been brushing up on my wildflower knowledge too, camera at the ready to capture their beauty in the natural light. One of my favourite sightings yesterday was the Early Purple Orchid.
We mustn’t forget the flurry of insect species we find all around us. Yesterday I spotted these interesting Red Poplar Leaf Beetles (quite often mistaken as ladybirds but actually very different as a friend pointed out)! The Chrysomela populi’s larvae feed on Creeping Willow but also on Poplar. According to my friend Paul, their larvae give off a strong disinfectant smell as a defence mechanism. How Nature adapts!
Change is a good thing. To see all this change happening around us after the rain is truly remarkable. With change comes growth and with growth comes a more grounded existence on this planet. This lockdown is a great opportunity for us to be getting outdoors, attuning our eyes to our natural environment and getting to know the other beings we coexist with, from the tallest trees to the smallest of insects. This time of change is certainly here for us to build a connection between ourselves and Nature.
“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.”– Alan W. Watts