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.