My garden in spring always makes me happy, and these last few days, with no rain, and sunshine as warm as May or June, have allowed me to wander in and out just to see what’s coming up. My ideal is that there should be colour and flower throughout the year, but somehow, this year at least, the early flowers have stayed and many of the new ones have arrived.
So today, I’m taking you on a virtual tour. I can’t really capture the whole view in photographs, so probably there won’t be any. You’ll have to make do with words and descriptions alone. At the back, at the end of a lawn, there’s a mixture of laurel and leylandii, which despite its reputation does a good job at screening us from neighbours. In front of that I can see three pieris, one of which was planted last year and the others, the year before. Pieries bear a white hanging flower, not dissimilar to a catkin, but though these have few discernible flowers this year, they have bright red new leaves, contrasting with the old lime green ones. At their feet, the first of the bluebells are making an appearance, contrasting with the pillar box red foliage. At the moment three tiny rabbits are frolicking on the grass and eating what they can of my plants, no doubt.
Down the side of the grass, there’s a mix of shrubs in greens, grey and wine red, in front of which are yellow and red polyanthus – or primula, or primroses, whichever you like to call them. Blending in are forget-me-nots and the shrub, mahonia, which has evergreen leaves but these have red mixed in with the greens, and now sport bright yellow flowers.
Outside of the front window of the house are two further beds, and there is a far one, where little grows because of the huge chestnut tree which shades it. We have started growing daffodils there, and they were in evidence, a couple of weeks ago. On the other beds, there are still some daffs, polyanthus - and bluebells just starting, plus a mass of grape hyacinths (muscari). These tiny flowers, which, like the daffodils, will be untidy in another week, have nevertheless cheered us with their brilliant blue colour, impossible to record on camera. Here too, we have another group of mahonia with their bright yellow flowers, and more pieris, showing both creamy white flowers and vermillion leaves. We used to have a gap in May, just after this cornucopia of colour, when almost everything turn to leaf. But the first of the cranesbill blooms, the size of a two pence piece and bright pink – almost periwinkle – has made its appearance, and more of these tiny perennial geraniums will encircle the beds as the spring progresses.