Skip to main content

The natural history of Christmas

Apart from the pear tree in which sat the partridge, there are no plants in the 12 days of Christmas according to the folk song. Sadly, even that reference is erroneous, because partridges are ground dwelling birds. And yet at Christmas we are surrounded by plants. This talk by Accredited Lecturer Timothy Walker puts the record straight and rewrites the zoocentric song replacing partridges with poinsettias, and maids with mistletoe.


Our Societies support hundreds of local arts and heritage projects. Each day we highlight a grant given in 2021.  

The Arts Society Dukeries have recently awarded a grant for Hallcroft Infants School to run art and nature workshops with their pupils. Local artist James Brint will run the workshops outdoors, giving the children experiences and skills that they wouldn’t otherwise have access to.

All donations from the Artvent Calendar will go towards The Arts Society’s grant giving fund, which awards grants to help preserve our artistic heritage, support the skills of artists and makers, and improve access to the arts for all.

Please click here to support projects like this one by making a Donation.



great fun. informative, quirky, well presented; note to self - leave the ivy alone, it's doing a great job; our hedge this year covered with bees feeding.

Margaret Sun, 19/12/2021 - 14:30 Permalink

Brilliant! Amusing and full of interesting snippets.

Jenny Sun, 19/12/2021 - 11:21 Permalink

What an enjoyable presentation. So many points of interest and I have to admit that there were a good number of times I thought "I did not know that".

Thank you

Nigel Sun, 19/12/2021 - 10:00 Permalink

Really enjoyed this talk. Well presented with a wry sense of humour.

Helen Seymour Sun, 19/12/2021 - 09:54 Permalink

Loved this talk, hilarious and beautiful and informative, thank you!

Angela Brignell Sun, 19/12/2021 - 09:28 Permalink

Most enjoyable , so much information new to me and delivered in an engaging style. I loved it and Timothy is ahead of the game as BBC Life of Plants is airing in 2022.

Anne Harris Sun, 19/12/2021 - 08:21 Permalink

Feel a bit dizzy after all these wonderful snippets of information, woven into a beautiful Christmas fabric - lovely! But I had hoped for a new musical version we could all sing too - maybe next year, Timothy?

Tricia Sun, 19/12/2021 - 07:38 Permalink

Thank you Timothy. Excellent talk. Fascinating.

Alys Sun, 19/12/2021 - 07:07 Permalink

What a super talk- & humour, another happy few minutes in the day. Thank you to the organisers.

Tessa oliver Sat, 18/12/2021 - 19:25 Permalink

That was really interesting and different. Thoroughly enjoyed on all levels

theresa Sat, 18/12/2021 - 15:51 Permalink