Sunday 29 March 2009

Soiree at Vrahassi

Once again, a superb and entertaining evening at Jane's Revolution Bar in Vrahassi. Many, many thanks to Jane and David for hosting the event, and to everyone who took part. We observed the Earth Hour, with readings of poetry and prose by candlelight. The next soiree will take place on the last Saturday in April - 25th at 7.30 for 8.00.

Flowers of Lassithi

Following the success of Nick Turland's talk at BioAroma, I have been asked to give a talk and slideshow on the Flowers of Lassithi on Saturday, 18th May at 6.00 p.m. The talk will once again be at BioAroma and we would ask you to register your interest if you would like to attend. This will give us some idea of numbers for seating and catering. The slideshow will focus on the flowers in the Lassithi area and elsewhere that we are all able to see and appreciate.

Saturday 28 March 2009

Soiree at Vrahassi and Earth Hour

We will be honouring Earth Hour tonight at Vrahassi by switching off all the lights, as we sing-a-long to some old favourites with Wolfgang and co. Should be great fun.

Starts at 7.30 - 8.00 p.m. but come early if you would like a seat.

Cretan violet

Thanks to Steve Lenton I found my first Cretan violet on Thursday on the Katharo. Absolutely wonderful! Thanks Steve - photos will be online soon and on the blog once I can find a minute to post.

Sunday 22 March 2009

Nick Turland's talk

The event was extremely well attended by around 150 people of all ages. There were a large number of Greeks and, of course, an equally large number of ex-pats. Sakis and his wife made us very welcome and provided wonderful refreshments after the talk. Nick's talk showed us extremely rare flowers from Crete - mostly high mountain plants, which few of us are ever likely to have seen. My particular favourite is the endemic Clematis elizabetha- carolae which grows in an extremely harsh environment. Many of us were amazed to see the beautiful fields of Tulipa doerfleri and we have decided to make a trip over to Rethymnon shortly to see them for ourselves. In the next few days, the Committee of Flowers of Crete will be looking at ways to improve the running of these events - the next one is scheduled for July and to find ways to encourage people to 'sign up' as supporters. I was asked if I would do a talk on the orchids of Crete and a date needs to be set for that. I would like to thank all the members of the Committee for their help in organising and carrying out last nights event. It was a huge undertaking and I couldn't possibly have done it on my own. Thanks also to everyone who donated a prize for the raffle - the amount raised will be published shortly. And, of course, a huge thank you to Nick for giving us his valuable time. We had a great day out in the field with him during the day and his help and advice at Pezoulia has been invaluable. Also many thanks to Babis for stepping into the breach to translate at short notice, which he did most excellently and to Yiorgos from 104.4fm Radio for operating the projector and laptop - a technical job which always worries me enormously.

Friday 20 March 2009

Visit to Cavo Sidero

The members of the Committee of Flowers of Crete have been invited to meet the experts and some board members of Loyalward and the Minoan Group to see for themselves the extent of the development at Cavo Sidero and to consider the impact on the environment of this scheme. We will be spending two days 8th/9th May there and will then be in a position to report our concerns and impressions to our membership.

Wednesday 18 March 2009


A friend of mine, Anamarija Partl, a lichenologist from Zagreb, Croatia, is staying with me for two weeks and it is hoped that she will accompany us to Pezoulia next week to identify some of the lichen for our species list. If you haven't already seen it, it is now online at and it will be updated on a monthly basis as we identify new species on the land.

Monday 16 March 2009


Dr Rosemary John and I are off to join Jane Sharp at Vrahassi this morning for a walk to the Flowers of Crete Nature Reserve. Last week many orchids were starting to appear, so we are looking forward to an exciting day, seeing just what species are there. Next week Anamarija Partl will be joining us. She is a botanist from Zagreb with a special interest in lichen and we are hoping that she will identify the various varities we have already spotted. On Saturday 21st March, Nick Turland and his assistant Babis (a student at Patras University) will be accompanying us to the land to help with identification for the species list.

We have also been offered two pieces of land by a neighbouring dimos to be used as nature reserves and once we have any firm committment on this, we will post more information.

Sunday 15 March 2009

Press write-up

To see a report of the Press Conference (in Greek) that was held on Friday evening and a photo of some of those concerned, please visit

Nick Turland's talk

Following the press conference on Friday night, it has been decided to bring the opening time of BioAroma forward to 6.00, to allow visitors to look around the new botanic garden and museum and to look at the essential oils shop, Julia's artwork and to pre-order Nick's book, sign the Sylogos papers and to find out more about Flowers of Crete. Those people who have reserved a place, please arrive early to ensure that you have a seat. The talk is being extensively advertised on radio and in the newspapers, so we are expecting a large turn-out.

Saturday 14 March 2009

Bazaar in Neapoli

The Flowers of Crete Bazaar in Neapoli will take place from 10.00 to 2.00 on Sunday, 12th April at the Centre for Foreign Languages, Therisou 19. Please give us your support. Lots of lovely things to eat, books, DVDs, bric-a-brac, clothes, and household items.

Report from Press Conference

Yiorgos Toutodakis of 104.4fm RADIO has put a report and photo from the Press Conference last night on the website He is going to mention Nick's talk on air every day next week in the run up to the 21st March. Also Leon from Anatoli is going to write about the work of Flowers of Crete and Nick's talk. Several reporters from Heraklion telephoned to say that they were unable to attend the press conference, but they wanted to write about the work we are doing in Flowers of Crete. We are very grateful to Sakis and his wife for being such generous hosts and supporters and also Popi for her help in arranging the press conference.

Friday 13 March 2009

Press conference in Aghios

The press conference proved to be a success, with an interview with Anatoli and with local radio and several enquiries from newspapers and magazines in Heraklion. It had not previously been understood that this is the only talk Nick Turland is giving while he is in Crete, and the importance of this event cannot be overstated. It was decided, that in order to fit everything in to the evening, we should bring the start time forward to 6.00 p.m. This would enable visitors to have a look around the botanic garden being set up at BioAroma and to talk to Sakis about the essential oils distillery and the museum of Cretan life. Nick's talk will then follow with translation into Greek and a chance to have a social exchange with refreshments kindly provided by Sakis and his wife. We cannot thank Sakis enough for his sponsorship of Flowers of Crete and his generosity in allowing us to hold such events at his premises.

Bazaar in Neapoli

Items for the Bazaar to be held in Neapoli on 12th April are now coming in and we would like to thank everyone who has donated so far. If you have items you would like to offer us, please contact Julia Jones, Barbara May or Chris Woolfenden to arrange delivery or collection.

Press conference

There will be a press conference for Nick Turland's talk tonight at BioAroma. It is hoped that this event will generate a lot of positive interest in the work of Flowers of Crete. It is becoming essential that we attract financial sponsorship, in order that we can continue the work we have begun and to enable set aside and nature reserves to be established all over the island. There is expected to be a large turn-out for what promises to be a wonderful evening. The books ordered for signing have now been sold, but there will be an opportunity to order and pre-pay for a copy on the evening. Delivery time is around 3-5 days, as the books are being sent from the UK.

Monday 2 March 2009

Flowers of Crete by Nick Turland and John Fielding

I am about to order books for signing by Nick Turland. The cost of each book, including post and packing, will be 65 euros. I can only order books for this event that have been pre-ordered and paid for, so, if you want to receive a copy, please let me know as soon as possible.