March 27th – Climbed the flowering puya chilnesis in the Great Glasshouse at the National Botanic Garden of Wales. Took me a few hours to battle with the razor sharp leaves at ground level then even longer to climb up to the flowers in order to get a good view, but I finally made it and got documentary evidence!

puya chilensis

Did you know that this plant is often called ‘the sheep eater’ as its razor sharp leaves ensnare sheep which then starve to death and then rot down in order to provide the plant with nutrients? It’s not a very pleasant story, but it’s definitely interesting! I’m glad I managed to escape the leaves otherwise the plant would have to be dubbed ‘the LEGO eater’ instead!

 

 

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#CIfA2015


Later today I will be heading to Cardiff for the annual Chartered Institute for Archaeology conference (#CIfA2015) which will take place over the rest of the working week, which is always a good opportunity for networking, learning about new projects and creating links between establishments. Continue reading

Introducing… Dr Lara Melody Jones, LEGO Academic


Lara is a new addition to the Regency Restoration Team and can often be found hanging around plants and areas of historical interest at The National Botanic Garden of Wales.

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To keep up to date with Lara’s mini adventures why not head over to Twitter and Facebook?


Photo taken of one of the flowering plants in the Great Glasshouse at the National Botanic Garden of Wales. I'm not sure what it is, but if you know, it would be great to find out!

Photo taken of one of the flowering plants in the Great Glasshouse at the National Botanic Garden of Wales. I’m not sure what it is, but if you know, it would be great to find out! Taken on macro setting with Canon 100D.

Middleton: Paradise Regained – a personal journey begins


Sat next to my desk on a gloomy Wednesday morning I realise it’s almost EXACTLY two months since I started my new job as the Outreach, Education and Volunteer Officer for the exciting, diverse and slightly terrifying (terrifying to me, on account of its scale) project to reinstate the late 18th / early 19th Century water park created by Sir William Paxton on the Middleton Estate, the area now owned and covered by the National Botanic Garden of Wales.

A painting of the Great Lake at the Middleton Estate by Thomas Hornor

A painting of the Great Lake at the Middleton Estate by Thomas Hornor

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Middleton – Paradise Regained


Monday January 12; a grey, gloomy and slightly glum morning which hailed in the start of my new job at the National Botanic Garden of Wales.

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IfA Conference 2014 (or; confusing grid systems)


As happens every time I attend an event, I have the best intention of writing it up during or soon after the occasion but instead end up doing so late. Very late.

This is a brief [EDIT: not so brief] account of this year’s Institute for Archaeologists conference which was held at the Marriott hotel in Glasgow city centre from April 9th – 11th. The conference’s theme – ‘Research in Practice’ – provided the opportunity to discuss research across current archaeological practice ‘as well as highlighting how archaeologists contribute new knowledge to a wider understanding of the human past’ (to pilfer a description from the IfA website – sorry chaps).

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