At around the same time, or just after the acacia flowers bloom, come the white or cream clusters of flowers on the sambuca trees.
The tree is also known as elder or elderberry. The flowers can be used to make cordial, syrup, liqueur or jam. The essence of the flowers is sometimes added to Sambuca, the Italian anise flavoured liqueur. They can also be cooked and eaten. The flowers are followed by black, blue black or red berries.
Acacia trees are in full bloom and right now are covering the hills around Bagni di Lucca.
Bees love the flowers and they make delicious honey.
The flowers are edible. You can dip them in a light batter and fry them. I haven’t tried that but I have eaten one straight from the tree and it tasted a bit like raw peas.
I love the flowers and the smell is heavenly, but they make me sneeze.
i know they are a pest and it is a pity the hillsides are not covered with chestnut, hazelnut, walnut and cherry trees. If you look at old photos of Bagni di Lucca you will see that the hillsides were terraced. Grapevines and vegetables were grown, so the chestnut trees are long gone. The farms were abandoned and acacia grows more quickly than more useful trees, so we are now left with acacia. They are beautiful, but they are a menace…any takers for removing them to start a replanting process?
This was the view up and down the river early this morning.
It looked as though it would be a gorgeous day, but moments later the mist rolled in and the sun disappeared.
I have just planted the geraniums on the bridge…some sun please!
I love the way tiglio trees create tunnels along the roads in Bagni di Lucca.
The leaves are appearing on the lovely trees in Fornoli…such a pretty time of year.
The last days of winter are upon us. Soon this winter landscape will change in Bagni di Lucca.
Magnolias have bloomed and the flowers are falling. Soon the trees will be green.
Roll on spring.
The pansies on the bridge haven’t been the best this year. They are nowhere as good as those from last year. I have no idea why, perhaps the weather didn’t suit them.
In about a week I will take them out and replace them with geraniums for the summer. Let’s hope they do better.
Take a last look at the 2016 pansies.
Anyone who would like to help water them over the summer please let me know.
The rivers and streams are full of fast flowing water at this time of year. It is heartening to see that it is clean and clear.
The colour of the water changes, depending on melting snow and the amount of rain. There are some amazing colours in the river on the way into the Garfagnana.
I pass this river every time I go to our mountain house. It is always beautiful.
It is raining today, more water to fill the rivers.