August was a joy. On several occasions families joined me in the walled garden at Loe Bar, Helston. We observed the wild garden, used phones to photograph specimens, and sketched and painted wild plants using pencils, microscopes and paints. Importantly, we had to think about which non-humans were using the plants and how colour and structure played a part. We did this by carrying out several exercises that helped us look at the ultra violet property of plants as well as their morphology. For instance, above is an image of the Chicory plant under UV light; you can get a feel for which part of the plant the insect is attracted to by looking at its own ‘runway’ lights. This is an area I am going to develop.
The children choose to observe, draw and paint the following plants:
Below Emma Griffiths assisted with the facilitation and helped record some of the plant drawings and paintings from week 1. Here Nasturtium is beautifully captured. The painting records the character and colour of the plant really well, and the drawing, its trailing habit. Week 2 is recorded on this webpage, which offers a fuller outline of the workshop.
Below are a few other plants that were present in the garden. There are many more to add to the list.
WATER FIGWORT Scrophularia auriculata
HOGWEED Heracleum sphondylium
STINGING NETTLE Urtica dioica
PEACOCK BUTTERFLY Aglais io
COMMON SORREL Rumex acetosa
The walled garden lies on a slope, hence the presence of Water figwort and other dryer loving plants. This is an area the children could learn about too, perhaps comparing which insects are in which soil, as well as which plants.