Two plants have appeared in my garden this week that I don’t remember planting.
First of all this orchid appeared in a pot of tarragon which has been at the kitchen door for several years.
I have no idea how it got there. Possibly the seed was in some garden compost and had been dormant for a few years or possibly it blew in on the wind or was deposited by a bird. Apparently these orchid seeds can take up to ten years to germinate. Whatever planted it, it is a lovely thing. I knew at once that it was a spotted orchid because I have a long dormant memory of these plants from my early childhood. When I lived in Shetland in the deep deep past, I collected the local wildflowers, pressed them and stuck them in notebook, unsorted and with no explanation but a careful labelling of each one.
I’ve kept that collection all these years and I knew that there was a spotted orchid in there, although rather smaller than the one in my herb pot. It was lovely to see one again. I hope it stays and makes more. Any advice on how to keep it, or move it to a wild part of the garden would be helpful!
The other random appearance was watercress in the pond. I noticed this the other day when I was looking for frogs.
I don’t remember seeing it before but I had a very hazy memory of having planted some unsuccessfully several years ago. I checked my (pre-blog) garden diary, regretting its lack of a word search facility, and found a reference to having sown some seed with little result in a pot in the seedhouse and then having moved it to the pond in 2011, a little more recently than my pressed flowers from the 1960s. Anyway, that’s taken 8 years to appear in any meaningful way. It should be edible, though I’ve seen some debate on the internet about this. Again, any advice would be helpful.
There wasn’t any watercress in the bogs and fields of my childhood but, in among the watercress in my pond, is a thriving collection of wildflowers, some also based on my childhood memories of the far north of Scotland – bog cotton:
bird’s foot trefoil,
or craw’s taes as I knew it all those years ago:
I love these wild flowers, slowly taking over my garden in relatively unplanned ways. They connect me to my past and bring me new joys.