It feels good starting to work again in the garden. Some hard pruning, some repotting, some cleaning (and some slug pellets scattering, alas). And the hot questions which keep me awake in the early hours…
Will the blue hydrangea stay blue this year ?
Will the snake-head fritillaries survive the imposition of a gorgeous Candy Love Hellebore in their midst ?
Will the very young Ceanothus recover from the violent attack which almost tore it from its roots (the culprit, I suspect, might be one of the neighbour’s cats) ?
And the rhododendron which was given to me last year by a visiting Japanese professor, the leaves of which are unfortunately spotted with brown marks, how will it fare ? (Visions of Himalayan slopes in my terraced house…)
Always ahead of myself, I pay little attention to the daffodils and hyacinths preparing their buds, and imagine the glory of my five types of alliums balancing their purple and silver spheres in the breeze. I keep inspecting the branches of the five Japanese maples (wet feet they got this winter, alas), thinking that this Spring will be the first time I witness their leafing out.
The garden is the reason I wouldn’t want to move away too soon (nothing of the sort planned yet). I did so many little changes and, in such a limited space, planted so many creatures I would like to see growing and maturing. In how many years will the eight snowdrops create one of those white drifts that make woods an enchanted place ? Would the tiny Acer Shirawasanum Aureum really grow to be a large tree crowned in shimmering gold ?
Funny feeling : people come and go, and gardens… Would the next owners hate my alliums and my thistles and replace them with roses, as I replaced the grass and ferns by flowering plants ? Would they think three hydrangeas are over-the-top in a small garden ? Would they care for the ivy I am fighting all year round ? And what will I do if I go back to live in one of those French flats where gardens are only a distant thought ? It is true, isn’t it, that the gardener plants his heart in the soil for which he cares. I don’t think I will ever be the city girl I was before coming to England, not any more.