When most people think of Ibiza they think of bars, clubs and beaches packed with holiday makers but a visit to the north of the island can be a completely different experience. We stayed in a small rural hotel near Santa Agnes and although only 20 minutes drive from Sant Antoni with its buzzing nightlife the atmosphere couldn't be more different. Nestled in a valley surrounded by pine forest and hills the only sounds to be heard were the birds singing and the gentle whisper of the wind through the trees.
We had chosen a wonderful time of year to visit at the end of May as the landscape was covered in wildflowers which seemed to be bursting from every road side, drifting through every meadow and colonising every nook and cranny of the many dry stone walls. Many of the wildflowers looked similar to those found in the uk but seemed slightly more robust, others I had never seen before and were completely new to me. After attempting to research these plants I found that there is very little information available on wildflowers of the Balearic Islands so I am still in the dark as to what these plants are. Some however were instantly recognisable, Rosemary, Lavender, Santolina and Fennel all grow wild in Ibiza as they love the hot dry conditions and rocky free draining ground. I couldn't help but pick a few leaves as we were walking to get a whif of the heady aroma.
Another plant that I recognised was Allium sphaerocephalon which I saw dotted through a meadow of dry grass reminding me of poppies in a corn field in the uk. This would be a beautiful idea for a wildflower meadow back home. One of the most numerous flowers to be seen was something looking very similar to cow parsley but with larger flower heads. Everywhere we went we saw clouds of these umbelliferous flowers which looked particularly beautiful in the early evening light with the sun illuminating them from behind.
One plant in particular I have become slightly obsessed with and I'm determined to find out what it is is a small shrub with flowers that look like scabious but the foliage forms a perfect dome of silvery leaves and the flowers stems stick out of this like pins in a pin cushion. I saw this growing amongst a bank of small boulders with grasses and wildflowers woven in between and it was such a stunning scene and could be easily recreated back home.
Another prominent feature of the landscape were the dry stone walls. These are used to terrace the land of the very steep mountainous hillsides for growing olive and fruit trees such as figs, oranges and almonds. I love the structure these walls provide within the otherwise wild and natural landscape. Some were very rustic whilst others were so carefully built with each stone interlocking perfectly.
I found so much inspiration here and couldn't stop taking photos, some of which can be seen below.