The bike and left knee have been adjusted, so gardening this week moved from part-time to full-time. Not a single pedal was pedalled, not a headwind faced down, not even a hill.
We’ve had warm weather by day and mild nights, so it was a good opportunity to get all the annuals planted. I had started about two weeks ago and finished it off this week. Usually, I set myself a deadline to have the summer garden ready by the last day of May, so I get the bonus for early completion.
A quote from the late Bill Shankley seems like a good starting point…
Football is not a matter of life and death… it’s much more important than that.
So it is with rain. It’s easy to forget that rain is essential, but the past few weeks have been mostly dry. Despite this, the main sections of the garden have coped well. Plants have tapped into the unseen reservoir of water below soil level. On the other hand, my obsession with pots on the patio has had me busy keeping them alive, and the summer months have not yet arrived.
But one lives in hope. There was enough rain over the past week to make a big difference. I’m very grateful for it. I picked a good week to be off the bike.
New for 2022: Burnet
My love of gardening returned after I retired. In a way, it saved me! I’m not quite sure how I’d pass the days without it. It has kept me busy throughout the year. Of course, a garden and a gardener are ever-changing. There are plants I’ve loved in the past that are no longer in the garden, and equally, I’ve grown to like new ones. About five years ago, I made a big effort to grow from seed. The propagator has been filled to overflowing in February and March. In April the glasshouse is full and only in May does it get cleared out. Each year, I grow plenty annuals and just a few perennial varieties, but I like to grow one or two things that I’ve not tried before.
What’s new this year? Well, I’ve got several. This one above is Burnet (Sanguisorbia). Started in early March, I’d given up on it because it did not germinate for almost a month. Now, it’s well on its way. Apparently, it’s a prolific self-seeder so I’ll need to be careful.
I’ve a few other new plants that I’ve grown or bought this year. Watch out for more over the next few weeks.
The Busy Lizzies planted at the base of the rockery were very good here last year, so why not repeat the process? I’m unable to grow these from seed. The seed is expensive and it’s better value to buy just two six-packs.
Why on earth would anyone like grass? I suppose it’s the most prolific plant on earth. While I mentioned last week that we have no lawn, there are some grasses that are beautiful, especially when allowed to grow uncut. This is Festuca glauca, grown from seed back in March. The trick with grasses is to include about ten or twenty seedlings close together so that when they mature it looks like one plant.
To finish, I’ve selected another grassy plant. It’s easy to see why this little thing is called Bunny Tails. The packet states that it’s a cute and cuddly dwarf grass that flowers from June until September. These are from last year and are flowering a bit early. I’ve plenty more that I’ve grown this year.
Bike update: The bike is sorted and it’ll be hard to hold me back. I’ve a few big ones to tackle over the next few weeks. I’m well rested and raring to go. Up hill and down dale.
What’s this Six-on-Saturday thingy? We are a group of gardeners who write. We write about six items in our gardens, and we do it on Saturdays. Many more choose to publish on Twitter and Instagram using the #sixonsaturday hashtag. You can find out more about it here.