Tuesday, 24 May 2011

An ill wind

I don’t think I’ve ever seen the Chelsea Flower Show looking quite so windswept as the television coverage of yesterday’s press day showed it to be. And certainly the fierce gusts throughout the south east will have made the traditional ‘Chelsea Chop’ – that time in the horticultural year when gardeners are reminded that a swift and judicious dead-heading of certain, robust flowering perennials will bear dividends with a second flush of flowering later in the summer – somewhat more drastic than anticipated in some gardens. In fact in one border here, the force of the wind seems to have inflicted more of a Chelsea Flop on a certain geranium. However, the plant in question being robust to the point of thuggishness, I have no doubt that it will soon make a full recovery. And in the meantime, its temporary absence has opened space into which the lupins can stretch out, and created a gap where we can plant some of the cosmos which we’ve been nurturing from seed in the greenhouse.

It’s an ill wind, as they say, that blows nobody any good.

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Mini cards

Very excited by the recent arrival of our mini cards from Moo. Nine different designs, featuring garden photography, marketing messages and favourite quotes, which we’ll be distributing amongst friends and customers to spread the grow message!

Loads more creative ideas about what to do with them, so look out for them soon!

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

May blossom

May has arrived, bringing with it the Andrew’s fortieth birthday, the prospect of the Chelsea Flower Show (for which we were too late to get tickets) at the end of the month, and, perhaps most importantly…some rain!

An unusually hot and dry April made for fantastic weather over Easter and the extra bank holiday gifted to us by the Royal Wedding, but left the garden gasping for the faintest sniff of an April shower. The thick layer of well composted manure we spread over the borders here at grow headquarters has not only transformed how the garden looks, offsetting the fresh greens and reds of the new spring leaves, but is doing an essential job of retaining as much moisture as possible within the soil.

And suddenly, the year seems to be well under way. The tulips are all but gone over now, replaced in the borders by alliums and unfurling, blousey paeonies. Last month’s vision of exaggeratedly generous cherry blossom on barely-leaved branches is now a memory, and now we can enjoy the sight of the May sun shining through pristine foliage and the amazing seeds pods of honesty Lunaria annua. And in the hedgerows, the dog roses are blooming with a gentle pink froth, and the hawthorn, which keeps us waiting, is clothed with May blossom. So much life.