Today has been mild and I have been in the garden for the first time in weeks, or possibly months. I’ve been doing some tidying up and noticing the tiny signs of spring that are appearing in dark corners. I found a hellebore flower, crocuses and irises peeking though the soil and the witchhazel’s golden blooms just appearing.
We have a new fence along one side of the garden, behind the raspberries. This area used to be dominated by my neighbours’ miscellaneous shrubs and conifers but there’s a space about a foot wide which has only bare soil. I’ve been unable to decide what to do with this area. Probably I’ll just let the raspberries take it over but right now it looks very bare. I was regretting not planting bulbs there in the autumn. I did some weeding round the raspberries and then I noticed that several foxgloves had inconveniently seeded themselves right next to the raspberry canes. There’s a well known gardener’s saying that weeds are just flowers growing in the wrong place. In flash of insight, I realised that the thing to do was to move the foxgloves into the bare patch. Thus the ‘weeds’ became ‘flowers’ and, so long as they survive the move, will provide us with joy in the early summer.
And here is one I prepared earlier (from last summer). It’s from the front garden but you get the idea.
Meanwhile, I started tidying up some of the ghastly mess round the patio near the house. The weeds there have been growing stealthily over the autumn and early winter. A lot of it is just grass but there are also a lot of self-seeded campions and mint – so also not weeds really but things growing in the wrong place and they didn’t look good. I hauled up some of it and found dozens of tiny snowdrops just waiting to bring us joy over the next few weeks.
Signs of spring indeed. It got a bit nippy in the garden but I’m so glad I got out there to poke about a bit and remind myself what to look forward to, even in these dark January days.