14th February 2024

Valentine’s Day and the promise of Spring! For years I have recorded British wild flowers and by now have seen most of the common ones. I can usually guess the family to which European wild flowers belong but Australian flowers are so different. Most do not belong to a family with any members in Europe so I have no idea what they are.

The words of Christ ring in my ears:- “Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow, they toil not, neither do they spin, yet Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these”.

The variety of wild flowers is so great and the construction so intricate. Usually we look at flowers in an arrangement or a border but if you look hard at a single flower as if it is a piece of engineering you can only marvel.

A crocus’s petals are so precise in shape and curvature that it can unfurl in sunshine to show the beautiful interior and attract insects but fold back to a tight spike if it rains or comes dark. (No, I don’t know how it does it, nor how daffodil stems cope with March winds.)

God’s creation is so generous in beauty yet practical or the plants would not survive. We can and should give thanks and take time to look hard at the wonder of what we have.

Postscript: When the bush against the wall to the left of the church doors comes into flower do look at it! It is a red flower of the bottle-brush group from Australia and unlike ANY European flower in its construction.

Margaret Clements