The garden isn’t quite as I’d planned it. There is bindweed and bramble. There are mounds of hedge clippings and piles of junk poorly concealed in various corners, and there are trip-hazard floorboards where the summer house used to be.
However, from some angles, it is quite something. Here’s six highlights to share this Saturday with the Propagator and the SOS gardening gang.
- This pot of herbs, with flowering chives and a borrowed treescape is my first highlight. The chive, Allium schoenoprasum, is a reliable bloomer, which easily over winters here in Somerset, growing back from its base year after year. It tastes great, and I’d say it deserves a prominent spot in every garden. In this position by the back door its easy to grab a handful of herbs for the kitchen, and the view always gets my attention here. Lately the sky seems bluer than blue, without the planes and traffic pollution in these strange ‘lockdown’ conditions. The copper beech tree at the end of the garden belongs to our neighbours, as does the holm oak to the left of the picture, with that rather wonderful wisteria rambling through it. We’ve had more time at home lately to appreciate these beauties.
2. The simple act of clearing a space under the apple tree, and putting this old bench there has given us a whole new favourite place to be. The yellow flower to the left of the bench is, I think, a double flowered greater celandine, Chelidoniummajus Florepleno. It self seeded and is most welcome here. We have plenty of this so-called weed in the garden, and I’m pleased to have it around.
The garden buzzes with bees, butterflies and birds, and as the the cat lazes under the bench, hiding from the sun and digesting her third breakfast, let me lead you down the garden path, to some more wonderful weeds.
But first, highlight number 3 has to be the potato patch. Lovingly, neatly, planted by by husband, it’s looking good so far. To the left is a tower that I’m hoping will have peas around it soon, although all seeds sown there have failed so far… I’ll try starting some in pots indoors.
Past the potato patch is where the wild things are. We’ve not had money or materials to do anything much with the space at the bottom of the garden. We’re planning to put in a fire pit, perhaps, but I do like to keep it pretty wild around here. I’ve added a few random willow stems and loops, and put a little statue of a scotty dog here, which a previous owner left behind. Other than that minimal intervention here, the weeds run rampant.
This laziness is rewarded with two of my all time favourite ‘weeds,’ in this spot, herb robert Geranium robertianum and columbine Aquilegia caerulea. I guess thats 4 and 5 of my six for Saturday…
So I’ll end on number 6, a hardy geranium. Geraniums definitely like this garden. This is a lovely clump of hardy geranium in a sunny corner, which I’m hoping to propagate if I possibly can… Perhaps this is Geranium macrorrhizum but I’m not quite sure…
That’s it from me for now. When the garden centres reopen and non essential travel is acceptable, I will get going with plans to get the garden a bit more organised and a bit less weedy.
But I’ll keep plenty of space for wildflowers and try to learn lessons from the weeds as to what does well in this garden. Geraniums and aquelegia seem to thrive, so I’ll look for related cultivars at the garden centres, to find species likely to be happy in this space.
I know I’m one of them.