Six-on-Saturday – I’m Dreaming Of…

I wish you a Merry Christmas and all the very best for the year ahead. May your spuds sprout early and your snails drown in beer.

26th December 2020.

I added some Christmas cheer to the garden this week. Bowls of cyclamen, ivy, Jerusalem cherry, primrose and tiny conifers have been beautifully planted up (by someone other than me) to add to the occasion.

It has been an Annus Horibilis, yet I take this opportunity to wish all my loyal subjects across the shrinking empire a happy and safe Christmas. Having got that out of the way slí, my floral additions below come with some thoughts for this very special time of the year bliain.

It’s late Christmas evening final edits time, so I’m moving one beyond six. It’s a Magnificent Seven. I made a promise to live on the edge. I’m sure Jon Propagator will agree that it’s the season for love and understanding. All other garden writers will be popping links (Six, I’d imagine) to what’s going on in worldwide Gardens today so do pop over for a look.

I’m dreaming of… a Coronaviris-free world. I hope it will happen very soon. The year has seen unnecessary death, misery, and stress. So, join me please by doing the right things to help keep ourselves and others safe.

I dream also of a Trumpless administration. Wear your mask, wash your hands. There will be no pardoning of gardeners.

I’m dreaming of… an end to homelessness. The very idea of a person not having a home is so very sad. Home is a place that allows us to find the strength to fight adversity, to love and be loved, to be creative and, in our case, to plant a garden as a hope for the future.

Dreaming doesn’t really help, so I’m pledging to decide how action on my part in 2021 will help. Actioning activates dreaming.

I include in my thoughts those who have a home but are unable to be there because of travel restrictions. Even in a world of Zoom, there’s nothing quite like pulling a cracker.

I’m remembering… my brother who passed away at the young age of twenty-eight. I’m remembering also all those from my extended family who are no longer with us to celebrate this Christmas, and I expand that thought to include your departed loved ones.

I’m patiently waiting for… a new bike. It will not arrive until mid-May because of supply-chain issues. Whatever you’re waiting for in 2021, may it bring you joy and contentment. Rule 29.b.2 is important here. Waiting is exciting, knowing that by doing the groundwork, the end result is almost inevitable.

I’m grateful for… the peace of mind that my gardening has given me. There’s been a lot written this year about the mental health benefits of gardening. In my case, I know that to be very true, not just this year.

I’m hoping for… continued gardening through these bleak months. There’s not much doing at the moment but plans are afoot. After the Christmas pudding and presents I assisted with the cleanup prior to a cold afternoon cycle and spent a while looking through my seed packets while watching The Incredible Showman. The propagator will appear from the attic on New Year’s Eve.

I watched the conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter during the week. There’s some theory or other that this would be the best time to plant something or other sa gáirdín, but I’m not a believer. This coming together of the two superballs is the closest since 1623 and will not happen again until 2080. In the meantime, it’s a Nollaig Shona from me here in South-East Ireland. I wish you all the very best for the year ahead. May your spuds sprout early and your snails drown in beer.

Pádraig.

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