A friend in America recently asked me to describe heather and Irealised how much we start to take for granted the things on our own doorsteps. When I first arrived here everything was a wonder and amazement, but now, after ten years, I'm starting to forget the times when I too had not a clue what heather or thistles actually looked like. I've taken a selection of photos of heather, from those I took the day we went off to the Highland Wildlife Park.
The thing about heather is that it is very subtle. It grows on hills and even in forests, but for most of the year it's a very low scrubby plant with dull green leaves that you barely notice. On hillsides it just looks dirty green-brown. Then late summer arrives and it flowers and... it's still incredibly subtle. The flowers are tiny and naturally coloured soft smoky purples and pinkish-mauve. As a result flowering heather comes across as low bursts of smoky colour you notice through trees, or it's an equally misty haze of colour on mountains in the distance.
Can you see the heather flowering on these mountains? (click on photos to enlarge)
How about now, as I zoom in a bit closer... ?
Now can you see it? Can you see the heather going up the hill all the way to the top? I love this next photo because of the striking different colours of that shocking pink willow weed in the front and those cute blue bobbly flowers that I have no name for. They looked just amazingly bright against the heather. :)
I'll go closer, so you can see just how tiny those heather flowers are. No wonder they look like coloured mist on the mountains!
Up really close you can see that each flower is a perfect little bell...
Just beautiful. :-)