The weather is set to turn warmer from tomorrow but last week was decidedly chilly at times. Yet when the sun shone it was very pleasant indeed sat on the swing seat with my gilet on, warming my chapped, decidedly older looking but impeccably clean hands on a mug of hot coffee. The garden appears to be stepping up a gear. Colour is appearing everywhere but not just courtesy of flowers, oh no. And that leads me straight to my first Six on Saturday…
1. A lot of plants in the garden are sporting fresh new foliage, bare branches becoming greener by the day. The evergreen box balls are looking particularly vibrant at the moment with new, rather fetching lime green leaves.
2. This Iberis featured back in January just as it was starting to flower. It’s in full bloom now and mingling nicely with the Grape Hyacinths. I must have another go at trying to propagate it, or perhaps dividing it, so that I can have some more dotted around the garden.
3. Last weekend was spent braving a brisk wind to paint the folding metal garden bench. It was beginning to look very faded and was starting to go rusty in places. I applied a first coat of black paint on Saturday afternoon and a second coat on Sunday. Actually, that’s not totally true. Some of it got a second coat.
When I were’t lad my Head of Year at school told us a story in assembly about a furniture maker who spent just as long sanding and varnishing the underneath of a table as he did the top. Someone once asked him why he did this as nobody would know what the table looked like underneath. The furniture maker simply smiled and replied “But I would know.”
Come Sunday evening I’d finished giving the top of the bench a second coat. It was cold and it was late but the tale of the furniture maker sprung to mind, as it often does. Could I really just leave the underneath of the bench with one very patchy coat of black paint? I pondered this for a while (well, a few seconds) and decided “Sod it, I’ve had enough.” The fiddly/intricate interlinking arches on the front of the bench were left unpainted too; I’ve decided to make a feature of the contrasting black and copper for now.
4. While I was painting the garden bench I discovered this yellow Hyacinth in the border behind it. I always forget this is here, which is a shame as it’s rather lovely.
5. Next up, the undisputed stars of the garden at present, the ‘Brown Sugar’ tulips. Where have you been all my life? I’m burying my nose in the fragrant flowers every time I wander to the patio. These are in pots but I’ll plant them in the borders when they’ve finished. More will be acquired at the end of the year.
6. And finally… The bee fly has been an almost constant visitor to the garden over the past few weeks, enjoying the nectar of Saxifraga, Grape Hyacinths, Primroses and emerging Forget-me-nots. On Thursday afternoon I found it taking a rest on the bottom of a ‘Black Lace’ elder leaf. They’re cute looking things.
And they were my Six on Saturday. For more Sixes on Saturday, from all around the world, take a look at the site of the chap who started it all over at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com.