Sizergh Castle in February

The weather was variable for our visit to Sizergh Castle near Kendal in Cumbria. There was one short heavy shower during which we were able to shelter. The sun shone afterwards, lighting up the tops of trees.

We enjoyed lunch in the café and explored the parts of the gardens, which were open. (To protect the lawns, they are out of bounds in winter.  We could see the waterbirds from a distance.) The number of species in flower so early in the year was impressive. The planting is very imaginative. It was the first time we had visited in winter.

We also explored some of the estate, where there are some good viewpoints.

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An ancient oak tree

I noticed some interesting things about a tree we passed on a day out in the Lake District. There was moss growing on the trunk of the tree and presumably on at least one branch. Some ferns were growing on a branch and on the trunk of the tree. In our garden that ferns usually grow in areas where moss has already become established. (I once studied the growth of a fern and wrote a post about it.)

It was impossible for me to stand far enough away from the tree to fit all of it in a single shot. In January the only leaves were a few from last year, which had not fallen to the ground.

Wray Castle in November

Hubby and I met up with two younger members of our family to go on a hard hat tour at Wray Castle. We had time to explore the public parts of the castle and to go for a short walk before the tour we had booked. (There are only a few days a year, when the hard hat tour is available.)

It was a beautiful sunny day and there was a special quality to the light. As the trees had shed their leaves there were views, which are obscured by foliage in other seasons of the year.

I had been a little concerned that my enjoyment of the tour might be marred by vertigo, but the guide set everyone’s mind at rest on that score. Even on the roof we were unable to look down as there were high parapets. It was a very enjoyable outing.

I wrote about our first visit to this National Trust property here.