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Housemartins = Good Luck?

Housemartins bringing you good luck if they nest on your house is a folktale/superstition that I have a real fondness for.

The year I had my son we had about 20 nests in the eaves of the place we lived!

When we moved into our current house there were 3 – but year after year the nests have been used by Sparrows.

Until this year the Sparrows came along and broke the nests, the Housemartins have rebuilt and we have Housemartins nesting again, so……. Housemartins = good luck, I hope so (not baby good luck this time!) - but if not then there’s always the cuteness factor.

Bee Tales

I found a beautiful Bumblebee the other day in a rare spot of sunshine – not that I’m moaning or anything, if it was too hot I’d be more disgruntled and it does mean no watering of plants is required ( the garden has grown out of control though, maybe too far to be reined in this summer!)

The bee looks as though it had been dusted with gold.

Then looking through the last few years photos I found quite a few more, laden down with pollen rather than gold dust I suspect.

Here’s a  few interesting bits and pieces about Bumblebees -

Their name refers to the hum they make – to bumble means to buzz.

There are many different names for them and different species (19-24 in Britain, depending on what you read, some of these close to extinction), but they are all known as Bombus.

When flying they build up an electrostatic charge, which is why they get covered in pollen.

They nest in the ground in tunnels or in amongst tussocky grass, usually in colonies of around 50.

They tend to visit the same patches of flowers every day but can fly around 1-2km to find food.

In British folklore they were believed to be messengers from the gods and to kill them was considered bad luck.

If one flew into your house it meant you would have good luck or a visitor but only if you let it leave of it’s own accord.

If one lands on your hand it means money is on the way if it lands on your head you are destined for greatness.

A good enough reason to grow lots of flowers in your garden! or, on the other hand it could be to help the Bumblebee and Honey bee survive – a win-win situation!




Bluebell Wood

bluebell wood Amongst the first spring flowers to appear, creating a blue carpet under the newly emerging tree canopy, bluebells conjure up childhood memories of long walks and the odd bunch taken home ( although it’s now illegal to pick them )

spring tree canopy

As beautiful as bluebell woods are they do have a feeling of other-worldliness about them and many folktales surround them, mostly associated with fairies. The bluebells are said to ring at midnight to call the fairies to meetings, but if you hear them then you have less than a year to live? and certainly don’t walk through them or you run the risk of being enchanted and spirited away or disturbing the spells that the fairies had hung on them and suffering the consequences!

bluebell wood

Children could also be in trouble – if one was to wander through a bluebell wood alone they would be taken by the fairies never to be seen again. If an adult picked a bluebell then they would be taken by a pixie and have to be rescued.

bluebell wood

Many of the tales can be explained by the fact that all of the plant is poisonous and is said to induce a dreamless sleep-


so be careful of the next bluebells you encounter, watch out for the fairies!

bluebell wood