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  • Writer's pictureChristopher Jelley

Moth Meadow Labyrinth

​For National Meadows Day I was commissioned to install a labyrinth in a secret meadow owned by the RSPB in Sedgemoor, Somerset. The field plot, quartered by ancient hedges of Hawthorn, Rowan, Hazel and Oak, is on a public path but actually some distance from any regular parking. To visit families would have to walk at least 20 mins (some reported closer to 50 though they did meander a little!) down though RSPB woodland into the meadow.

Marbled Whites and Ringlets bobbing up and down over the Ladies Bedstraw, Cork-fruited-water-dropwort, Bethany and Self Heal

Moth Meadow visitor on National Meadows Day

But this long-ish walk-in only just heightened the experience, for the Lady's Bedstraw was at its height and the natural perfume rose up through the forest to greet the intrepid travellers. The meadow itself was quite a treat, un-improved meadow land (meaning it has never been ploughed and seeded with a mono culture grass for grazing or hay.)

'Delicious vanilla honey scent met us as we emerged from the dark into this beautiful meadow – lady’s bedstraw is at its peak.'

When arriving at the meadow field edge, the diversity on butterflies, moths, birds and grasshoppers was equal only to the plant life teaming there; Bethany, Self Heal, Orchids, Yellow Rattle and my favourite The Cork-Fruited-Water-Dropwort! The mown path then leads you down the field edge and then into the heart of the meadow grassland weaving back and forth through all four moth wings before finally ending at the moths head. Though interestingly, the moth form can only be seen from the air and not whilst you are in the meadow or the labyrinth.

Hazy lazy bumbling bees amongst a sea of purple yellow fluttering butterflies catching the breeze

This is a great way to walk inside the heart of a meadow without crushing the very essence of what you want to see.

The labyrinth will remain in situ until early August when it is due to be mown, but if able to visit before then park at the RSPB Swell Wood near Langport in Somerset and walk down into the meadow and bathe in its tents as you descend.

This is the flyer poem I wrote for the launch with Carolyn Lefley cyanotype sun print.


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