Tuesday, 29 March 2022

i'm obsessed with my spring garden

 ok, well the title of this post isn't exactly a shocker for die-hard followers, i've been a keen gardener for over a decade. it all started with my allotment, and then easy shrubs and homegrown salad leaves in containers. and the garden in our current home, has been completely stripped back, and replanted, slowly, a few plants at a time each season, seeing what likes where, adding nourishment back as we go along.

last summer it was fantastic, i took photos for posterity, and today is much the same. at the end of the post, if you haven't seen it yet, there's a video tour of the garden at the end of February, so you can scroll on down and see it more in depth. 

it's so lovely to see the garden i've worked so hard on, start to really show some abundance, some lush growth, flowers through the seasons, enough to put in pots, evergreen leaves sprinkled amongst the borders, purple leaves, variegation, tall plants, small plants, climbers, edibles. my garden is a real mix of things, it's not got much definition, like 'oh this is my herb bed', instead it's like 'oh, here's a space, what's something useful or pretty that can go there, let's try it'. sometimes it doesn't work, sometimes the seasons mean things don't flower well, sometimes our giant oak tree provides shade at the wrong time of day for certain varieties. 

my mum said lately that she can now see the garden i spent so long talking about - like two years ago when it was just a big patch of very bare earth, i knew what it could become and that's how i saw it and talked about it. everyone else just saw that bare earth. 

first off, let me wax lyrical about the hellebores. because if you follow me on instagram, you'll know i'm particularly keen on them (read: obsessed, and i've bought a few more varieties to enjoy next winter). how they provide green all year round, flowers in the shade, shape and colour and structure  throughout the winter months, there's not much i don't love about them. did i mention they are perennial, and they require basically zero effort to look after? i think so many suburban garden could do with more of these in their shady patches. 

my muscari and tulip container is flowering dutifully again this year - i simply let it sit round a half-shaded corner around the house and forgot about it over summer and they seemed to have adored being left alone. 

i have purchased a few more plants for the garden, as i always do each season. including some fresh violas (below). but mostly i've found myself planting out bulbs, ones that have been forced indoors and then can go outside ready for next year to be triumphant. i've loved the approach of appreciating the colour inside and then knowing that they'll last forever, and it's now a gift i give to lots of friends and family too. 

this little comfrey (i think it's a comfrey?) volunteered itself to the garden, and i couldn't be happier, it looks so pretty and then when it's finished i can turn it into fertiliser. happy days. 

you know our garden is a space where children play and where i have visited because there are shells in various spots, and i love the feeling of nostalgia they bring to our space. they fill it automatically with memories, and they're also useful tools for digging or mixing or creating some fantastic mud structure.

this next photo may not look like much, but to me it says 'hope'. this is a tayberry that you can see tied up to the posts, and it's coming in to leaf more abundantly than i've ever seen before, so there's a chance that this year i may get more than three actual tayberries! not that i suppose i'll see them - that'll probably be for the kids... 

there's a surprising amount of colour at this time of year, and that fills me with such joy. yellow daffodils, blue muscari, pink anemones, purple vinca and violas, pink hellebores, red tulips, white comfrey... the list goes on.

one of other top surprising favourites is this, iberis sempervirens, which is looking so good this year and providing lots of bright white flowers in a half shaded patch, and looks especially good on dark rainy days. i spotted this all around my local area at the beginning of lockdown and finally bought one last year for our home, and it fits very happily into this spot. 

the tulips have started flowering, which my littlest calls 'lips' and keeps being surprised that there are more each day. she stands and counts in her own special way '2, 3, 6, 8, 4, wow, 4 mummy!'

so there you go, my reader friends, a little insight into my garden, a little hope, a little lightness. because we all need a little more lightness in our lives, things are awful heavy in 2022. 

i shall leave you with the video, i hope you enjoy it! all those buds coming up... so much to look forward to. 

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