This has been a crazy Spring. And looking back through my photos and blogposts I see that most of the preceding years have been just the same. But, despite the wild fluctuations in the weather, the trees and plants are patiently going about the business of growing leaves and flowers.
There are only a few bluebells in my local wood, a contrast to the sea of blue we saw in Hitch Wood last week, but every bit as welcome.
And "Lords-and-Ladies", arum maculatum, beginning to show in the damp, shady places.
A few years ago I remember sitting on this fallen log. Then the fungi, mosses and beetles got to work on it, slowly breaking it down. Now there's a miniature garden growing on its rotted wood.
Some early flowers of Red Campion growing beside the stream.
The little River Mel's clear waters slip silently through the shadowy green tunnel of trees. A Kingfisher zipped through like an electric blue spark.
Hands up who wants to be a tree! Hundreds of seedlings volunteer to take over any space in the wood. Almost all them will fail, of course.
In the meadow the Horse Chestnut trees are bearing their "candles" of blossom. They are so much part of the English scene that it's hard to believe that they are not native to this country at all, coming originally from the Balkan peninsula.
The footpath leads through the little gate beside Topcliffe Mill.
One side of the churchyard has not been mown and the wild plants and tulips intermingle haphazardly.
For the last couple of photos I'm going back a couple of days to a visit to Paxton Pits Nature Reserve....
A nesting box and a spectacular growth of yellow fungus.
And one of the smaller pits associated with gravel extraction, now managed for the benefit of wildlife. We were hoping to hear the singing Nightingales as I have in other years. Apparently they are there, though they were frustratingly silent on Tuesday.