After waiting all winter, the first of these beautiful and delicious flower buds was ready to cut, steam and eat. It was delicious...and perfectly acceptable to harvest ethically, since we never actually named it (just kidding)
The globe artichoke (Cynara cardunculus var. scolymus) is a perennial thistle of the genus Cynara originating in Southern Europe around the Mediterranean. It grows to 1.4–2 m (4.6–6.6 ft) tall, with arching, deeply lobed, silvery, glaucous-green leaves 50–82 cm (20–32 in) long. The flowers develop in a large head from an edible bud about 8–15 cm (3.1–5.9 in) diameter with numerous triangular scales; the individual florets are purple. The edible portions of the buds consist primarily of the fleshy lower portions of the involucral bracts and the base, known as the "heart"; the mass of immature florets in the center of the bud is called the "choke" or beard. These are inedible in older, larger flowers. (Wikipedia en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artichoke )
I almost walked right over this snail on the way back from a long hike in the countryside, but the spiral shape caught my eye. Went I bent down to see what it was, I was amazed at the color and detail I could see in it.
Buzzing along on a cold clear sunny morning. I took several pictures of this bee pollinating flowers in the garden, but this colorful, out of focus image was my favorite of all. Sometimes (for me, at least) the clearest, sharpest image is not the most "accurate" memory of the moment.
Some of the last of the local varieties of apples from the farm at Llanerchaeron in west central Wales ( www.nationaltrust.org.uk/llanerchaeron/ ) laid out on the grass on a very cold frosty morning All delicious...but as I found out later...some are better for baking and others just for eating.