Insects of the Wildflower Patches

If you like small beasties, head for the wildflower plots.

Foxglove Trees

Several of the new plantings are Foxglove Trees (Paulownia tomentosa), nicknamed for their flowers. They're not "native", but then neither are the magnificent double pink cherries that transform the Meadows every spring.

Cherries & Cherry Plums

The Meadows is most famous for the avenues of cherry blossom. There must be hundreds of thousands of pics online.

Wild Flowers in Spring

Alongside the plantings, there are of course some wildflower weeds. The Council couldn't kill them all if it tried, and its Living Landscape policy is now to let some areas grow free: they're good for wildlife.


Four new pine trees have arrived in the park: two Austrian and two Scots.

Birds in Spring

'See if our chicks aren't home by sundown, this time I'm just going to leave the key under the nest.'


Rowans. Autumn.

Cultivated Flowers in Spring

Planted or wild, there are displays of flowers from February till winter.

Bees in Spring

In March, if you stand patiently, you may see the first urban bees of the year ambling around the Meadows crocuses. Many of these early wakers will be the large queen bumblebees.


The park's full of memorials. Most are for people who loved this place: they'd be delighted to see students revising in the sun under their commemorative trees, and this gorgeous blue-eyed dog bounding over their remembrance benches.


There are a few alders in the park; mostly saplings, and three old giants scattered along Melville Drive.


One of the many reasons not to dismiss conifers is the small but exquisite Cedar family.


Glossy in summer; late to fall in winter.

Sweet Chestnuts

The spines of sweet chestnut husks are much longer and more prolific than those of the horse chestnut.

Horse Chestnuts

There are conkers to be found in the park, but you have to get up early to beat the squirrels.


These leaves are a familiar sight, but many of the park's oaks look very different.


The motorist's enemy (though most limes aren't).


Some of the grandest giants in the park.

Birds in Winter

One sunny day in late January I set out to take bark pictures but, distracted by all the birdsong, ended up trying to get bird photos for an hour or two instead.


Some of the park's willows are ancient.


The fluttering leaves of birch are rarely still, except during misty dawns.

Tulip Trees

Several of these have appeared across the Meadows & Links in the last few years.