Until Sunday we have been housebound, except of a slow walk along the icy pavements. We just had to get out and feel the air and listen to the bird song. Luckily whilst the lock down lasted we have had much to entertain us in the way of tasks, reading and watching the birds, and getting on with jobs inside.
When we got to our local supermarket we were surprised to find it open, and managed to get a carton of our special milk, and a little fruit. Virtually all the fresh produce had been sold and the supermarket was more empty that late on Christmas Eve! We are being patient and understand that it will be several days before supplies get back to normal.
On Sunday when the snow started to melt and temperatures rise, I didn't hesitate to get out into the garden. For one, pots had to be moved around: precious plants had been moved from the front of the house into the garage, from the shed to the utility, and from the conservatory to the house, and they were all shuffled back to their usual overwintering positions.
A little peer over the little of the garden that is planted out, and the pots gave me very meager but non the less pretty offerings for my vase.
The twig is a piece of the Dwarf Forsythia which I had from my Kenilworth Plantwoman friend Janet. This shrub has the loveliest of forms with branches that swoop and curve, and is less than 25cm high and in still in its pot into which it was first planted, along with species crocus and Ophiopogon planicscapus Nigrescens. I'm not sure of its particular name.
The delightful textured leaf with purple wash on its mid leaf vein and ruffled edges is Teucrium scorodonia 'crispum marginatum', which also is known as curly wood sage. This plant came from Alison C and the gift is being cherished. It is a very tough little plant but cutting this shoot which grew slowly over the winter will ensure that the many smaller shoots will be encouraged to spring up as soon as the temperatures warm up. At the Bishop's Palace a large round urn in the centre of formal garden is planted up with a mixture of curly wood sage and succulents, and when Alison C and I were admiring this plant last year, she offered me a little plant from her 'mother plant'.
The Primula stem has been saved from the hoard of slugs who are sure to emerge very hungry from their temporary freeze. The plant was chosen for me from a selection of old Primulas at The Vyne by my little Grandaughter, several years ago.