Sunday, 15 April 2018


Catkins of an alder in front of a stone building in the golden light of evening.
Evening is unpredictable. One moment it's sunny, then it's gold, then it's dull, then it gives gold another innings, then it's duller and duller till it's dark. And I, it seems, never manage to get to the tree I'm following during its sunny moments. Dull is standard. Gold a bonus.

Here is a view towards the building where, one day, when it isn't after hours, or dull, or raining, I'll see if anyone will let me up to look down on the tree.

Alder with catkins, with plastic in branches, in front of a fancy street light.

Much depends on which direction one faces. Two minutes apart, looking another way, noticing the plastic which has been there since the beginning.

An ant on the bark of an alder tree.

No leaves, loads of catkins - and a moderate flow of ants. Ants are hard to capture crisply in fading light but there is one there if you peer.

Bent railings on the guard around an alder tree.

I am captivated by the railings around the tree. I'm as much railings watching as tree following for they seem to contain as much life as the tree itself.

Someone has bent them so two prongs lean towards each other.

(A friend said 'here, I'll take a photo - so he did - and this is it.)

Glasses hanging on the railings of the guard around an alder tree in Halifax.

The 'Lost and Found' function continues with a pair of glasses.

(I'm beginning to think this tree is pivotal.)

Small green plant at the foot of an alder tree with fallen catkins around.

In November there were little leaves at the base of the tree. They've gone. If we hadn't had snow, maybe they would have still been there. I don't know. But instead, at its foot - here come the plants! Green-ness! Flowers ahead! (As long as the council leaves them.)

P.S. While I was photographing the tree, people were arriving from two directions, hurrying happily into the theatre opposite. What was on? Clearly a big event. So I peered between the posters of future events stuck to the window of the box office . . . but they turned out not to be stuck on the window itself but to clear stands within . .  which meant I smashed my eyebrows, nose and forehead wham against the glass. Not good.

Having failed to find the answer written up I asked a woman waiting for a friend on the steps. But she couldn't remember what she'd come to see. Evening does funny things to people.

For more about Tree Following go to Squirrelbasket and you can become a Tree Follower too.


Anonymous said...

You have chosen such an INTERESTING location!
I hope they let you go up inside that building one day.
You are so observant. I did spot the ant, after zooming the picture.
I wonder if they will let the railings out as the tree grows fatter.
Those specs look like a prop positioned for effect by a news photographer (of whom I have known many!) - it will be interesting to see if they are claimed.
I see you have been getting down and dirty at pavement level again, too. Champion drain cover...
All the best :)

Anonymous said...

I always enjoy the way you draw our eyes to the things it's so easy to overlook. You are very good at interesting detail. I doubt I would have noticed the railings, but since you pointed them out I had a good look and decided they were interesting and rather beautiful. I think it's good to be so reminded of individual detail. Be interesting to find out what the theatre was showing that wasn't;'t obviously advertised and which people had forgotten the name of....there's a theme there, perhaps?

David M. Gascoigne, said...

Wow, it is hard to believe that people buy theatre tickets and go to a performance not even knowing what they are going to see! We had tickets for the local symphony orchestra last night but the weather was so bad we decided to stay home. Initially the performance was going to be cancelled but late in the afternoon they decided to go ahead - I guess so that they don't have to issue refunds for the tickets.

Lady Fi said...

Lovely details of the tree and its treasures!

John "By Stargoose And Hanglands" said...

Maybe the lady couldn't read her ticket because she'd dropped her glasses somewhere. Perhaps while bending down to look at ants on a tree.

Anonymous said...


Diana Studer said...

Do you have a lovely black eye?
My husband once walked into a huge glass folding door at the shopping mall. I was horrified, thought he'd been mugged.
Go carefully!

liz said...

Lucy, you are the gold standard of detail. Loved the description of evening light and the railings as much as the tree itself. The railing are rather impressive for a city tree surround. I haven't seen the ant yet, but will go back and inspect. Hope they let you in the Halifax Building Society (was it?) to look down on your tree.

Anonymous said...

It's a great tree to follow! What fun that people leave lost and found things there. I like the leaning prongs, too.

Hollis said...

Lucy, you are such a skilled photographer of street plants! great shot of the green plant and grate :) I've been looking but have not yet spotted any aside from the dead from last year. However this isn't unusual for Laramie, 7200 ft elevation

Pat Tillett said...

HEY, I found your glasses! There are hanging on that railing...

Very interesting post. You really do have an eye for detail.