For my walk this week I went to Fairy Glen, situated on the side of Parbold Hill in Lancashire. The Glen follows Sprodley Brook which over a period of time has cut through the underlying sandstone to create the steep valley which is Fairy Glen. There are traces of some small scale quarrying and this coupled with the action of the brook has created several little waterfalls and cascades. It is a magical place especially in the Spring when the ground is carpeted with wild flowers.
A clear footpath leads down into the Glen and alongside it there were lots of bright yellow Marsh Marigold. It was time to get down on my knees to take some photos.
The petals contain a substance that is related to carotin pigment. It was once added to butter to give a rich yellow colour.
Moving down the valley the air was pungent with the smell of Wild Garlic.
The main reason for my visit was to see the bluebells, but I thought I was perhaps a week too early. At the top of the glen the flowers were only just showing a bit of colour.
However, lower down the glen in the sunny glades the flowers were covering the banks.
These were true native English Bluebells.
Dotted amongst them were the pink flowers of Red Campion.
It was a place to linger and just listen to the birdsong and the tinkling of the water.
There was also plenty of yellow Celandine. The leaves of the young Spring plants contain Vitamin C and can be used in a spring salad. However the later leaves develop a bitter taste and become poisonous.
I had seen lots of wild flowers but had not spotted any fairies. I did see a large toadstool which is perhaps where they used to live.
On my way back up the glen I saw some Enchanters Nightshade.
It will not be in flower for another month or so but it proves that Fairy Glen is an enchanting place.