It’s official, Spring is here. The sun is peeking through the clouds and the flowers are popping out of the ground in resplendent glory
Ireland is famous for its weather, and while the climate may feel like we have no specific seasons, the flora and fauna tell another story. We’re sharing some photos and stories from our favourite spring moments:
Orla Grant from Dublin’s Fair City
A chance visit to Altamont Gardens in County Carlow a few weeks ago revealed their snowdrops were in full bloom. There is a dedicated ‘Snowdrop Walk’ to follow around the beautiful gardens and the crocuses and daffodils were beginning to grow too. I’m sure by now the grounds are covered in yellow, purple and white flowers. Swans glided across the lake and the whole place was terribly tranquil. I sent my six year old cousin on a quest for a peacock feather but alas we left empty handed. There is always next year…
‘Tis lambing season
Jonny Lucey, farmer, from Inchigeelagh in West Cork.
Spring is a special time of year for every farmer. The days begin to stretch and you can see the land waking up and blooming after the long winter. When you spot the first lamb in the field, you know for sure that spring has arrived. There are few sights fonder to me than newborn lambs running around the fields in spring. They run and tumble around in little gangs, looking for new areas to explore but never straying too far from their baaing mothers. And you might get the odd ‘pet lamb’, too. These have to be bottle-fed and can end up following you all around the farmyard like a little dog! I always think it’s an awful pity that the little lambs grow up into big old stubborn sheep!
The sun is back in County Wicklow
David Fallon, Manor Kilbride, County Wicklow.
I grew up at my grandparents’ house. It was directly across from the kind of farm that children’s authors make up, right up on the top of a hill with this red corrugated iron barn that was more red from rust than paint. It seemed to lean into the valley as if it was about to tip over. Once Spring came, the sun would roll over the crest of the hill away from us. Our dining room was faced with floor to ceiling windows so we’d sit watching, cursing their luck that they were sitting in sun until well into the evening.
Once the cows were back out in the fields we’d watch a steady line of them follow each other to the barn where they were being milked, like some well-drilled army troop. Their moos were trapped perfectly in the acoustics of the valley so we’d hear them when we were having dinner. Mr Lucey above would get a great sound out of his guitar. It sounds a little soppy, but it was exactly what made living in the country special. Also, in my part of west Wicklow, Spring meant that the snow from the Sally Gap would be gone, so we could drive up to Lough Teagh (The Guinness Lake) and over to Laragh and Glendalough. Even Powerscourt. I owe someone a thank you for a childhood in Wicklow.
There you have it. We Irish are suckers for Spring. It signals the end of our chilly winter and gives us hope of an actual summer. Plus, any excuse to take more photographs of our gorgeous landscape can’t be ignored.