Garden School:


Garden School:
Teaching this week: Rose pruning (as always!) and leaf mold.

Monday, 7 March 2011

Digging is warming work.

Best laid plans..... on Friday I spoke merrily about completing my big Prairie beds today.

No such luck, woke up to a thick frost, and it didn't go over until well after 11am. If the grass is frosty there's no point me going out to work - treading on frosted grass kills it, and you are haunted by yellow footprints for weeks afterwards. Plus of course there's no point trying to week when the ground is frozen solid!

So, a nice quiet morning catching up on paperwork, then out in the afternoon for an extra session of lifting plants,.

As hoped,  Mary Ann le May was in at the same time: she'd been called in by my client to redesign the shapes of the two shrubberies.  We hadn't seen each other for a couple of years now, and the first thing she said was "I nearly didn't recognise you without your shorts on!"

That's me - live and die in shorts. I hate wearing longs, and put off the day as far into the autumn as I can.


Before she arrived, I dug out a few last perennials to be rehomed, and fortuitously found an extra clump of Crocosmia "Lucifer".  That's what they look like in summer, in case you can't think off hand: the big, strong, bright red ones. Some people think the foliage is coarse, compared to the normal Crocosmia, but I love them for the strong red colour.

At this time of year they are invisible, just some dead brown stems if you are lucky, so finding  this was particularly good news, as my client had told me that she'd given away all the ones we found last week, and that if there were any more left over, I was most welcome to take them myself.  I'm thrilled with that, as I've been growing them from seed in my own garden, and haven't got them to flower yet.

Twenty minutes in to the afternoon, I was overheating in my full thermals, so I had to take off my fleece: when Mary Ann arrived, well bundled up, she was astonished to find me gardening in a long-sleeved (thermal) tee-shirt and a sleeveless jacket! Well, I always find that digging is a very warming occupation, and the sun was out!

And what a joy it is to see the sun again...

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