Seed Swaps

strolling with Bella

04 May 2012
Rainy 15°C / 59°F

For quite sometime, I go for a stroll with Bella. After Bella the dog made some mess (she killed two chickens in the village, disappeared for a few days and returned limping, we tried in vain to sedate and to bring her to a veterinary clinic) we contacted a dog trainer who is helping us to better understand her behaviours and finally try and domesticate her.
Following the trainer’s advice, at the moment we have to go for a walk together everyday, creating more intimacy. So, every afternoon, when the dog sees me going out of the door and heading for the small road climbing up the mount Pelpi, she immediately arrives and seems to be very happy. We walk along country fences and hedges, cross meadows and follow lonely paths through the woods and trails made by the wild boars, discovering nice views of the valley and meeting often roe deer but no human beings.
Two days ago we arrived (I can’t say if Bella was following me or I was following her) in a large meadow, heavily dug by the wild boars and … a lot of blooming purple and white wild orchids appeared!
What a marvel! They should be elder-flowered orchids (dactylorhiza sambucina) and early purple orchids (orchis mascula).
Strolling with Bella is definitely a discovering wild flowers lesson: I have seen some big wild columbines growing here and there and I’m curious about an unknown plant growing in shady places, near fountains (very roughly, it looks like a tender tulip) and I’m waiting for its blooming.

1) the meadow where the orcids are blooming
2) a white Elder-flowered Orchid
3) a purple Elder-flowered Orchid
4) my friend Bella
5) a temporary creek near a wood




What a lovely sounding walk. The orchids are beautiful. The only ones that grow wild around here, that I know of, are the ‘lady slipper’ ones. Down here they are yellow and up in northern Ontario where I grew up, they were pink. Sorry to hear that Bella created a disturbance. Hopefully, your attempt to domesticate her will yield good results!

Posted on 05 May 12 (about 4 years ago)


Folia Helper


Marvellous, those orchids…

Posted on 05 May 12 (about 4 years ago)

Looks like Bella is becoming much more relaxed and at ease around you – good job, I’m sure she appreciates your efforts. As usual, beautiful photos!

Posted on 05 May 12 (about 4 years ago)

Excellent way to spend the afternoon. Your ‘neighborhood’ sounds like a lovely area for a walk. My dogs and I are jealous.

Posted on 05 May 12 (about 4 years ago)

Wow that sounds marvelous. The orchids are wonderful.

Posted on 05 May 12 (about 4 years ago)

What lovely country you have, and the wild flowers are simply beautiful. It looks as if it were a perfect day for a stroll with a cheerful friend.

Posted on 05 May 12 (about 4 years ago)


Folia Helper

United Kingdom8b

Brilliant wild orchid specimens, well spotted! :)

Posted on 05 May 12 (about 4 years ago)

I know this may sound silly … Bella. Bella is female? It’s strange that she hasn’t had pups from a stray mating? I wonder … if she was spayed as a pet but because of her fondness of chickens, perhaps beaten? She seems to have made la vostra casa, la sua casa. I hope she bonds more with you. Hoping it keeps her out of mischief and harms way. And Bella would make a good bodyguard for you, while you wander ‘camera in hand’, among the wild boar paths! ^.0

Love the pictures!

Posted on 06 May 12 (about 4 years ago)

@ Hedge – yes, Bella is female, and she hasn’t had pups up to now. The dog trainer says that probably she has not been abused but she has been alone since when was a very young pup, without any experience of other dogs or of human beings (and growing she has kept away from both of them). She probably has never been touched or petted by nobody, and now she has to learn that there is no harm in been touched by someone. She is a solitary (and very territorial) dog: sometimes a stray dog arrives here, and she barks nonstop against him. Pups? she has disappeared for a couple of days, who knows? About the chickens: probably it’s her hunting instinct.
Yesterday I’ve been instructed by the dog trainer about wild boars: in case I meet a flock (but, so far, I have seen wild boars only after the dusk, not during the day), I shouldn’t be in danger, but she could be, it depends on how she acts!

Posted on 06 May 12 (about 4 years ago)

You live in such beautiful surroundings, your photos always show really clear, bright colours – the camera or is it the air?
Wild orchids are so magical. One year we had many Bee orchids appear down at the farm, in several different locations. I would go out everyday just to stand and drink in the sight of them. The following year there were many less and the year after that none at all.

Posted on 08 May 12 (about 4 years ago)

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