Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Here Comes the Sun

When the Herd arrived last month Petersham Meadows were lush and green. April had been the wettest on record and the rain continued into May. Last week was wet and cold but the annual Twickenham Regatta heralded a change to summer.
Competitors using the draw dock at the end of River Lane to compete in theTwickenham Regatta

With the National Trust’s electric fence restricting the Herd to the western third of the Meadows the view from Richmond Hill has taken on a new appearance with the main meadow having a two tone look.
View from the Terrace on Richmond Hill
Calves grazing the restricted pasture within the fenced area

Most of the pasture within the fenced area has been grazed. Over the fence many of the grasses are a metre tall and Dandelion and Plantain seeds fill the air.

Spring visitors hidden by the tall grasses
Ribwort Plantain – Plantago lanceolata
Dandelion seeds – Taraxacum officinale

Before the National Trust installed the electric fence the herd would spend hot afternoons under the shade of the Hornbeams near the Buccleuch Garden stile. As there is little shade inside the fenced area the Herd has taken to spending more time in the barn. This small space must be very hot for 18 cows and calves.

Cow and calves having a welcome drink
Cow with her calf

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