My column for the June issue of the Hawkesbury Parish News
Pegging the washing out on the line in the garden, I realise I’m knee-deep in dandelion clocks. The recent rains have brought the weeds on apace, as well as the glorious spring blossom.
But on a sunny day like this, I’m happy to forgive the weeds. After all, weeds are only plants that are growing in the wrong place.
I learned this important gardening truth at a very young age, berating my father for uprooting bindweed. I couldn’t understand how he could want to eradicate its beautiful pink and white flowers that fitted like fairies’ hats on the ends of my small fingers.
My own nemesis is ivy, so rampant in my garden that I feel it should carry a government health warning when sold in garden centres. But I know it’s a haven for wildlife, and come Christmas, I’ll be glad of it for decorating the house.
I’ve even learned to love blanketweed. I spent ages today twirling it like mouldy candyfloss round a garden cane, spring-cleaning our garden pond. The frog that was watching me work, like a small green planning officer, seemed glad to see the back of it. But beneath it, I was delighted to discover lots of frost-sensitive oxygenating plants, safely overwintered and multiplying beneath this insulating, er, blanket. They’d have cost a fortune to buy new in the garden centre.
So what’s not to love about weeds? Japanese knotweed? Bring it on!*
*No, not really! Not even I’m that much of an optimist!
If you enjoyed this post, you might like these other ones about gardening and garden produce…
- In praise of gooseberries and other soft fruit in my gardens, past and present
- The joy of jam from my garden harvest
- My new philosophy of flower arranging
…and All Part of the Charm, my new collection of essays about village life, including other columns written for Hawkesbury Parish News 2010-2015, now available to order in paperback and as an ebook here or from your local bookshop.
(Photo credits: www.morguefile.com)