Monday, 24 January 2011
Dreaming of Days to Come.
We have almost finished the last of the three Christmas puddings and very lovely they were too. Christmas is behind us and the beautiful weather of the last week has brought spring ever closer. Dave and I spent a blissful few hours on Sunday beginning the post Christmas clear up of our garden and discovered so much growing beneath the covering of leaves, making me itch to start propagating and cutting back.
The mass of seed heads we left over winter to feed the birds is now being added to the compost heap, the parade of goldfinches and coal tits having moved away to more interesting food as the season gets going once more.
Not only are the earliest of flowers, the delicate snowdrops with their purest of white nodding heads, beginning to open
but tulips are also pushing their stubby leaves high above ground. The more debris I cleared, the more drifts I found which makes me feel somewhat better about the fact that yet again I didn't add to the bubs as I intended, the autumn/winter rush of orders making any garden work an impossibilty.
The purple petals of the arabis beneath the sitting room window are already opening and plenty more buds are tightly furled promising a pretty display later on in the spring when the drifts of dainty saxifrage open alongside.
How ever, much as we have started to wreak a little order on the neglected garden, there are many areas yet to tidy. I really should turn the compost heap as we are already adding more to it. The whole area needs a clear up as pots and buckets have been left there since the summer and now it all looks so bedraggled.
Of course, Dave and I are spurred on now we feel back in touch with our patch. I love to browse through the catalogues, bathing in the glow of the inspiring images within the glossy pages.
Sarah Raven particularly concentrates on fantastic photography and curled up by the fire I like to imagine our garden looking a little like this ...
which of course it doesn't. I will say though that over the years we have created rather beautiful swathes to look out on, pretty patches such as this tangled mass of lychnis, lupins and ever-manic nasturtiums.
We have made a large duck pond with an old fruiting cherry gracefully arching its branches over the pond and scattering confetti petals over the murky waters beneath.
In summer bright orange marigolds seed in any gaps and lift the green of the yet to flower lupins
and clumps of chives are everywhere, used in salads and posies with equal fervour.
There are all kinds of herbs growing through the perennials such as lemon balm, oregano and my favourite golden marjoram which looks so amazing when grown with lavenders or marigolds.
Gorgeous never-ending forget-me-nots with the prettiest of summer's day blue petals and surely the prettiest of names.
It's a garden where hens often escape to wander free (to peck and wreck)and the sound of ducks splashing and diving mingles with the sweet songbird always present;
where there are fruit trees and bushes of all kinds to provide us with the makings of jams and puddings and a number of alcholic beverages to boot. The children pick their own apples for packed lunches, grazing on red and black currants, scoffing juicy tayberries, and enjoying crumbles and pies made from our rhubarb and gooseberries.
It is a garden that changes constantly and provides a home for all manner of wildlife from newts to hedgehogs. It gives us vegetables and salads, a place to sit or for the children to play, flowers to fill the house with nosegays such as this
and although I had not intended to visit it in quite this way today, I am so glad I have. It is all just around the corner and the fun begins again! x