I love the way this image bursts open on the page – its so starry and clearly a “five” from – a pentagon/pentangle – I wonder if this is accidental or if it invites us into the growth pattern of gorse… must find out….


I have been surprised by the popping of gorse and seduced by its heavenly scent. Because it is so long flowering it offers nectar the whole year round and its prickles ensure protection for nesting birds. Gorse loves sunshine and acid soils. Europeans brought Gorse to New Zealand and Australia where it has taken root and is considered invasive. Bec what are your thoughts on Gorse?

Gorse (aka Furze in Ireland)

The Gorse is still blossoming in mid Winter in The Glen River Park – facing North

I love the gorse for the sense of the wild and rugged, that pale green and golden yellow prickling, still with us in the built environment. Gorse has repopulated the footprint that once held Gouldings Fertilizer plant, the business is still operational elsewhere. The Glen is known as Goulding’s Glen after that family that gifted the site to the City. In the distance rises the red edged tower of the fire station; the oily gorse is often set alight by park users, and sometimes the fire brigade will come across the road to douse the flames to quell the spread. The gorse grows back after the spring and summer burnings, which peak on St John’s Eve or “Bonna Night” as it is known locally 23rd June, just after the summer solstice (the burnings still a rite held somehow in the urban human dna). Just now, in November, once more the trodden paths have reaching prickle-stems of gorse, crisscrossing the foot-trodden paths, reminders of their hold over the place, showing their finger to any concern for their charred and blackened spring selves.

This is a fairy gateway that all but disappears in Winter as growth dies back – facing East

Published by @julforres

Julie Forrester, artist based in Cork City Ireland

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