Happy New Year to Jon our leader and self confessed propagator, and all the rest of the gang of plant lovers. A choice shrub, yet to flower, and a bunch of carrots which Jon modestly describes as probably fit for a class 3 bag, but probably tasting superb, are part of his six. I'll be over to catch up with friends there during the day.
I seek absolution. My sin I believe is not in the activity itself: no ill intent or premeditation to cause harm ever existed in my mind. However my actions caused a vexatious reaction far beyond what I would ever want to cause. Since it was my actions that caused this, I must confess and say it was my fault. What was I doing? I was dead heading a window box, which had been standing on the ground on a public thoroughfare. It was within my eyeshot as I lock and unlock my bicycle at my usual parking place. I thought the box was outside one of the many airbnb quaint cottages which line the side roads of Wells.
This was not the first time I had done it, and noticed how the petunia and bidens, started to thrive after I started to dead head it weekly. I had of course admired greatly the bidens to the extent I had looked it up and thought it to be Bidens Bee Dance, and it had been added to my list of plants to acquire next year.
I had but dead headed half the trough, when a woman ran out the front door, and had a right old go at me. I tried to explain that I was not harming her plants at all, and even put all the dead heads on the floor at her feet, socially distanced, of course. I felt absolutely mortified. She had either had a very bad day, and was fed up with the passers by, or does not possess the ability to see the good in people.
Why do I bring this up around a month later? I had tried to 'forget' the incident, but as I was putting away my lighter outer coat during the week, I found some detritus in my pocket, from a previous dead heading session. Right in the bottom of the pocket, some of the spent flower heads yielded some seeds, and the whole episode has come back to mind, and I can feel the hurt, as if it happened yesterday. In my heart I have forgiven the person for her overreaction, and I hope in her heart she has forgiven me.
This little spot of soul searching, which I have been in the use of doing at about this time of the year, and others, gives four of my Six on Saturday.
1. Dead heading. Yes I shall only do dead heading in my own garden, or only with permission of the owners. Penance: maybe I ought to volunteer at the Bishop's Palace and get all their dead heading done.
2. Seed collecting: only gather seed intentionally, and with permission, and only seed that one intends to grow at a later date.
3. Go through my seed box, and make a plan and timetable for seed sowing for the coming year.
4. Offer seed from my garden. Back in the summer the Eryngium Silver Ghost was putting on a good show, and I have left the seed heads on. It was in late February 2019 when John Massey gave me a seed head straight from those growing in his garden, with his own hand, in case you form the impression that I take seed from anyone's garden, from which these were grown. They are now ready to fly and be broadcast in just the right place in other gardens, and come up and display their beauty. Let me know if you would like some.
5.As good as any silver Christmas decoration: Cotyledon orbiculata. This is a favourite of mine, and is able to take the low temperatures in the conservatory, though we do have a froststat setting overnight. More plants are being moved from 'The Shed with a side Window', which is my only semi protected area.
6. Another reason not to allow cold and non gardening weather to put paid to the weekly posting, and again, forgiveness please for now having posted last week, is to reveal the answer to the mystery plant. What you saw were the thick branched rhizones, and unlike some descriptions, for me this plant is not evergreen.
It is Viola sororia 'Albiflora'
Next week, I may reveal some of the garden related presents I received....