Out & About …

… on the North York Moors, or wherever I happen to be.

Heather’s Purple Dance with Golden Grass

Apart from the swathes of purple heather, there is another colour that resonates with me and epitomises the moors at this time of the year: the golden brown of grasses. These strands of gold flourish abundantly upon the ancient swiddens, gently swaying in the breeze and contrasting with the purple that’s nothing short of mesmerising. My inclination is that this Bent Grass, though the Agrostis genus boasts many varieties. Were I to take a punt, I’d put my money on Brown or Velvet Bent‚ÄĒAgrostis canina by its scientific name. But, in all honesty, this is pure guesswork.

If it is indeed Bent, it was once much valued as fodder for cattle. And, like straw and certain reeds and rushes, it found itself repurposed for wartime contingencies in the creation of paper1‚ÄėBent Grass | Oban Times and Argyllshire Advertiser | Saturday 07 February 1942 | British Newspaper Archive‚Äô. 2023.¬†Britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk¬†<https://www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk/viewer/bl/0005085/19420207/116/0005> [accessed 13 August 2023].

The creativity that humans can come up with during moments of necessity is truly astounding.


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