Garden Journal 27.9.21

This week in fact we tackled, as a team, raking of the wild flower sward that I managed to cut on Monday afternoon. Cutting it was enough of a task but the remains were a sizeable area of loose grass that, for the benefit of the flowers, needed collecting. Alone, or even with two this would have been a wearing job, but team tasks were shifted around, and every raking implement to hand was grabbed and we all swished and raked the area clean, leaving a relatively simple job now of collecting with the tractor and trailer.

Raking a meadow-like space into stacks might not cause a mature team to start whooping or dishing out high-fives, but it’s definitely an activity that is valuable to the garden’s wild flower orchard. I’m glad and not a little relieved that this sizeable task is now complete, and give full credit to the enthusiasm and hard work of the Sulgrave Manor garden volunteers – and Heather of course!

Growing at Home

On the home front I’ve little garden progress to report as most of my spare time has been taken with other, less interesting activity (don’t mention D.I.Y.). I have though finally managed to bring together and corral my potted plant collection that were previously, due to the house move, tucked away in various locations.

Happy together, for now…

As you might expect my home garden plants represent my last few years in gardening, but are to be honest something of a motley collection. There are a few favourites that I’ve propagated over the last few years such as Viburnum bodnantense, Staphylea pinnata, and an unknown but nice variety of fig. There’s also a good few new-ish recruits that I’ve purchased along the way, and about twenty pots that were dug up from my previous garden. At the moment, most of these are laid out next to each other covering an area about the size of a large van, so there’s not many really, honest.

Where to begin…

I’m therefore stuck in a garden limbo, with an open, lawned garden, a nice if random selection of plants, and no plan – but of course, there lies not a problem, but an opportunity! Over the coming days I shall be forming a plan, working through the must-have elements in the garden, before I can think about which of these plants I can honestly, or permanently, put into the ground – as I don’t intend to plant any of them twice!

I’ll be sure to update as the plan forms, as the elements come together, and especially when the golden moment arrives when I break ground in my new garden!

Observations – Autumn Light

Amongst gardeners, a frequently reported aspect of the season is autumn light, and the glorious hold it has across our gardens and landscapes. Weather can be changeable, yes, and down right nasty on some days, but in a few moments it can about turn, and for those with a good prospect – illuminate our day and fill our hearts.

There are many occasions across the seasons when, whilst working in teams, everyone radiates happiness due to a day of great weather. But then there are days when the weather, or light experience in this case is entirely more personal. I can’t tell you how much difference a few seconds of perfect light can have on my spirit, and I’m sure you’ve experienced it too.

Cosmos ‘Purity’

Heavy clouds can part to reveal a blue beyond, low sun lights up a lichen patched fissured old trunk, or translucent flower petals are noticeably backlit by the brightest of sunbeams. It can happen maybe once a week or even just once a day, but whenever it comes, as fleeting as it may be, it’s the one moment that’ll bookmark my day for sure.

Sunflowers catching some rays…

At this time of year, all natural light can be considered autumn light, but whenever, or wherever you find yourself, you’ll know when you experience ‘proper’ autumn light. You’ll know by the way it embraces your spirit and you’ll be completely caught in the moment. If I can make one suggestion – don’t always try to photograph it – sometimes you just need to feel it for a short while. It will pass, but its effect will be long lasting.

I’ll finish up my journal entry there I think… Many thanks for dropping by, and if you’ve found anything particularly useful, interesting or even questionable, then do let me know in the comments or with a like – all positive engagements with my Gardening Ways blog are very welcome!

Gary Webb
Gardening Ways

(You’ll find me on Instagram as @Gary_Webb1 & with Ruthie @Allotofpotential)

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