Tag Archive: lilac


Stockholm-lilac‘The bright and busy days of May are here;

The countryside’s ablaze with colours rare

In sun and shower. There’s cricket on the green,

And lilies in the wood, and now are seen

Laburnums pouring gold, tall chestnuts decked

With spires of pink and white, where bees collect

A precious harvest, then away go winging

Past lovely lilacs where a blackbird’s singing.

Old gardeners now their long experience bring

To battle with the weeds; the lawns are neat.

A worried thrush scolds by the garden seat

Her wandering, gaping brood. House-martins cling,

Pied master-builders, on the weathered walls,

And from the woods all day the cuckoo calls.’

John (Jack) Kett

from ‘A Late Lark Singing’ (Minerva press 1997)

It wasa glorious morning to get back to the garden..

It was a glorious morning to get back to the garden..

The snow has gone (for now), it was sunny, there was a sense of expectation in the air and gardening juices were rising…so the real ‘Green Deal’ has begun- a new gardening year!

A blue tit on one of our bird feeders-  we seem to have a good number of these

A blue tit on one of our bird feeders- we seem to have a good number of these

At last it’s been possible to get out in the garden! So what happened?

I submitted my bird watch figures to the RSPB : four Great Tits, four Blue Tits;three Blackbirds; three Seagulls;  two Wood Pigeon; 2 Collared Doves; 2 House Sparrows; 2 Carrion Crows; 1 Robin; 1 Chaffinch; 1 Wren… ‘and a cock pheasant in the pear tree…’)

I’ve also sown some seeds ( a tray each of Leeks, Cosmos and Iceland Poppies in my propagators). Nice to get my hands into that peat free compost again…

The border of suckering Lilac before clearing

The border of suckering Lilac before clearing

The border after clearing- ready for some annuals- marigolds?

The border after clearing – ready for some annuals- Marigolds?

I did a bit of tidying in the greenhouse, but more importantly cleared a border of some suckering Lilac. This is in a raised bed on the edge of my kitchen garden and though I did think about some sort of barrier fabric to try to keep the lilac back, in the end I don’t think that would be very effective. So, Im thinking it might be best to make this area an annual bed (maybe filled with Marigolds) both to look good and to help attract beneficial insects into my food growing area. This will also be less awkward when I need to cut back the Lilac again in a couple of years.

Finally, before the wind and rain arrived,I dug up a row of Nerine bowdenii bulbs (the ‘Cornish Lily’ or  ‘Guernsey Lily’- pink flowers in the autumn). Boy did they need splitting after being in the ground for a good number years- and now I have plenty of new bulbs to plant!

Nerine bowdenii flower

Nerine bowdenii flower

All very satisfying  after about three weeks inside! Looks like it’ll be wet today, so I may have to content myself with preparing some new blog posts and thinking about where to put those Nerines…any ideas?

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