Of course, May is a month of cow parsley and fruit blossom, wild garlic and bluebells. But it's also a month where the hedgerows come into their own.
When I told you about Joe and I walking down the lane to preschool: well, there it is (in the top photograph). And today I took my camera so that on the way back up, I could take a closer look at the hedgerow which borders one side of it.
Right now the hedgerows are so dense and green. All those layers, from the moss-covered earth mound and gnarled old hawthorns which are, in a sense, the very backbone...
To the constant renewal of plant life. Leaves unfurling and ferns uncurling.
The hawthorn blossom is only just opening in this part of the world.
There are tangled networks of brambles and purple tinges on leaves amongst the nettles.
Rosy new shoots appearing...
A few surprises, such as currants, and rogue saplings. Honeysuckle too. And close to the ground, roots and miniature leaves and flowers. Rosettes and fronds, pebbles and moss.
And the lush verdancy that only May has.
Yesterday we walked along in the fine drizzle. If anything, the hedgerows seemed even more lush and I think I actually preferred the damp.
Of course, the good thing about hedgerows is they have occasional gaps for you to peep through.
So what does this particular hedge on this particular lane have to offer?
Hawthorn, nettles, buttercups, dandelions, holly, many varieties of grasses and mosses...
Herb Robert (which I just discovered is a member of the Geranium family), cleavers, brambles, beech, rosebay willow herb, ferns, dock...
And those saplings I mentioned: horse chestnut, ash, sycamore...
Alongside the old hawthorn branches are the odd man-made structure too. Decaying fence posts, rusting barbed wire.
The hedgerows tell a story. Form and function. Native plants and the odd impostor. Layers and layers, a green tapestry.
Often we'll drive past them, a blur on either side of the car which obscures our view of the landscape beyond. But just walk and explore.
I'm sure I must have looked a bit odd to those who passed me as I poked the camera into the twigs and branches. But that's the thing about taking photographs - you have to try and lose that feeling of self-consciousness. You are conducting important business: that of investigating and being curious.
I plan, perhaps when the new site is finished, to write about how I work. The printmaking process, from little field trips to inking and rolling.
One part of that process is identifying plants. I love to consult books (I have many) which are illustrated with pictures of native plants, trees and flowers. They have to be illustrations, not photographs. And I learn names and habitats and all kinds of interesting facts.
I suppose that it's all about noticing what's around you. Walking past that hedgerow in the mornings is now part of our routine, but if you manage to slow down for ten minutes and look closely, you discover much about the seasons and what grows where.
And for the frazzled mind, a bit of green therapy.