• september mood

    Garden • Sep 9th, 2018

    For this first ever garden post I feel a little introduction might be a good idea.  My garden is quite plain, a study in green and brown: few flowers, more trees, native hedges with field maple, hazel, hawthorn, blackthorn and hornbeam and a single species hedge (beech) which creates a hidden square. There are lawns on different levels and two broad paths. I use the look of the land beyond walls and gates so the garden sits comfortably in its wider landscape. We love our trees and try to keep them in favour so each has enough light and room to spread. The walnut tree is our best friend and her canopy provides the protection we need according to the season.

    The soil is sandy with many river stones from floodings of the past. We are 40m above the Avon now and the land around us has been worked into orchards and grass land for sheep with a few smaller parcels for vegetables like courgettes and asparagus. I prefer foraging in the even smaller areas, usually where two hedgerows at the field margins meet back to back.  Closer to the house there are a few zinc containers and clay pots with lavender, calendula, a pretty pin cushion plant and a small leaved euonymus that wants to take over and the old Belfast sink is home to lots of borage. New this year is the herb garden in a raised wooden planter. My favourite is the Greek oregano and the mint. I’m not sure what’s happened to the coriander; it’s good to get close to plants and see their ways. No shoots as yet.

    Turning into September the temperature tells me it’s still summer but the flower party really is over and our plant friends are ready to give us their gifts. There’s a lot fruit and seeds for us and for the hedgerow creatures. I’ve already harvested, cobnuts, walnuts, elderberries, plum, apples, damsons and sloes. I like to make refrigerator jam and cakes with the fruit like Dutch apple tart and plum and almond cake. And there’s also the festive gin with the sloes.  We have plans for a woodland circle and a fire torch when the leaves have turned and are falling. It can be warm enough to sit outside for a good while yet and the softer light and smell of woodsmoke make a special kind of outdoor magic.



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