Tomorrow I am to be visited by Zoe from Garden Hopping which is both a great pleasure and a cause of mild anxiety. Zoe is a serious gardener, someone who knows a lot about plants and gardens. I am a passionate gardener but so haphazard and self taught. My bookshelves groan with books about plants. I think about my garden, muse, sow, propagate but I am a rank amateur. I garden on a high bare hill, with a northwest wind and a stony soil. Much of what I tried to grow in my first year here failed. Now I propagate madly from what is here and what will thrive. There is no point in planning a thrillingly designed sort of space with rooms and great herbaceous borders and topiary, all of which I love. We are an ancient farmhouse on the side of a steep valley. The garden is a mixture of the veg patch, which has been gardened productively for generations, and a field. I plant trees for an orchard and daffodils round their feet. The trees are not twigs now, although they were a couple of years ago, but they are not a generous orchard of quince and cherry and damson, with two gorgeous gnarled mulberries near the house. That is in my head.
I have extended a yew hedge in the kitchen garden and we have planted mixed native edible hedging in the field. This is not a great green wall, like the old hedge in front of the sunny bank. It is a narrow line of green twiggy stuff, with some rosehips which bow the plants heavily down, some hawthorn, some blackthorn and some hazel. All in my head, all in my head.
There are weeds in abundance every where: nettles, dandelions, cow parsley, docks. There is mown grass too, and beds of chard and beans and marigolds and apples weighing down the trees, but it is not tidy. It is not under control. It is all a dream or a mess - I hardly know which.
I have been out deadheading and will pick sweetpeas. Perhaps the sun will shine. I hope so.