For illustrated talks on natural history and history see

For illustrated talks on natural history and history click here for

Wednesday 11 May 2016

An unusual English churchyard with Green-winged Orchids and former home of George Washington's grandmother nearby.

This 19th century Sussex church is interesting in itself: more info' at

American readers may be interested to know that George Washington's grandmother lived in this village before this church was built.

The churchyard has both English and Irish yew trees -- two Irish yews either side of the path above.
What is so lovely about this churchyard is the sensitive way in which it is managed.  Some paths are mowed between the gravestones leaving the greater proportion of grass uncut and allowing these beautiful native orchids to flourish.

A rare shaft of sunlight illuminated this patch of orchids above.  Overcast skies are better though for photographing such delicate flowers.

With this village's links to the American Revolutionary war, here is a poem by the American author, Mary Elizabeth Frye

Do not stand at my grave and weep 
I am not there. I do not sleep. 
I am a thousand winds that blow. 
I am the diamond glints on snow. 
I am the sunlight on ripened grain. 
I am the gentle autumn rain. 
When you awaken in the morning's hush 
I am the swift uplifting rush 
Of quiet birds in circled flight. 
I am the soft stars that shine at night. 
Do not stand at my grave and cry; 
I am not there. I did not die.

Other dignitaries in the founding of America also had links with Sussex, e.g. William Penn.  Please see 

And finally, if you are interested in native orchids a limited and unique opportunity exists in June.  Please see

No comments:

Blog Archive