I marvel at the countryside in Spring and early summer as nature comes into bloom. It is as if the country is  swathed in great garlands of flowers.

Hawthorn on avenue

First were  great patches of celandines on the edge of the roads followed in quick succession by gorse, the blossom of sloes in hedgerows,bluebells, wild carrot sometimes known as ‘Queen Anne’s Lace’ flounces along the roads, whilst ‘jack by the hedge’ keeps upright sentinel. The May tree , or hawthorn burst out of hedges. Today we have wild roses coming into bloom along with ‘the gelder rose’. Not the sweetest smelling plant but it creates spectacular drifts of blooms.

I noted that the elder flower is beginning to bloom. I have a memory of driving to Shannon to meet Canadian friends who were flying into Ireland. We had left at 4.00am and watched as dawn woke the countryside. Our friends asked what was in flower around all the fields;  so noticeable was the elder blossom as they flew into land.

Astounding as it may seem this saying has often come to fruition. Certainly we had been needing rain as growth was slow and seeds were slow to germinate. The ravages of winter are healing as new growth begins to camouflage bare patches on shrubs. So ever the optimist.

Warwick picking flowers in front border

Warwick picking flowers in front border

The large orange poppies are survivors plants grown by Warwick’s Mum.

Vegetable seedlings are almost ready for planting out but nights are still too cold.

Vegetable seedlings are almost ready for planting out but nights are still too cold.

One packet of mixed salad greens goes a long way.  These are just ready for picking and we will be picking them for the next few weeks.

Raised bed lettuce

Just one packet of mixed lettuce seeds will keep us supplied for the next few weeks.

Back border

The hydrangeas are recovering from a severe 'hair cut'. The candelabra primulas in full flower.


Foxgloves love this damp shaded corner under the apple tree

I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the fine bay tree beside the patio will begin to recover. You can see green growth at the back and side of the shrub. Big question DO I CUT THE MAIN TREE?

Bay tree May'11