Wednesday, January 27, 2010
An irresistable urge
Badnage wood is in the distance; its whispering conifers hardly moving on this dank afternoon. The famous hen-house-on-wheels is at a crazy angle mid picture behind the trees. The Glam Ass's latest shed - which we will call 'The Field Shelter' is to the right. In the foreground the usual garden things as seen in winter; a desolate border, a shabby lawn and a nascent crinkle-crankle hornbeam hedge which on reflection would have been better grown in yew. Out of view to the right are bird feeders which attract a fantastic variety of birds which eat a fantastic amount of nuts, seeds and fatballs. Whoever observed that British birds are mostly boring little brown jobs is wrong, wrong, wrong. Our garden birds are a delight; flashes of gold and green, red, blue, black and white dart into view as I sit, usually open-mouthed, gazing out of this window. I tot up finches; Gold, Green and, Chaff. Blue tit, Great, Coal and Marsh tit too. Brambling, Siskin, Thrush, Blackbird, Sparrow, Jay, Magpie and damned, blasted pillaging Pheasants. Today they are the spots of colour - and how welcome is the patch of red on the Woodpecker in this subdued landscape.
I need to be out there. Enticing it may not be, but nonetheless I find myself drawn into the garden to stand and look - just to be there for heaven's sake. I scuff my feet amongst the leaf mould, kick the boards of the raised beds, make plans, haul out a weed or two and blow on my freezing fingers. It is still bitterly cold up here on the mountain but something is stirring in me and, although not very obviously, in the land too. There are bulbs forcing their way up towards light, and catkins, still tight, are on the hazel boughs. They are not like lamb's tails yet - another month before I see them dance in the breeze and shake their golden pollen to the wind. The evenings are lighter - and I am willing them to be lighter still, sooner and sooner - but know that this will take its predetermined time. We have a way to go yet.
I've ordered seeds, they will arrive and some I will plant very soon. I will, I will.
In the meantime my gardening is on paper. I plan my crop rotations, promise to try harder, buy fewer plants, make more from less. The year ahead is filled with so much promise and I can hardly contain my excitement. It is only January for heaven's sake. What will I be like in April?
I see sleet is forecast for Friday. Sigh.