A silver swan...

Scary stuff. A new year, a new idea. I have a silly new non-gardening idea for 2020. Adult ballet classes! That is, very mature adult ballet classes. Oh my. I am going to join the Silver Swans (that's the name of the dance programme).

 Pebbles the dog is puzzled...
Dancing gardener

Can just see myself grand jete-ing into the flower beds to dead-head the dahlias. Well, perhaps not. But one is never too - ahem - mature to try something new. So far have resisted Tai Chi (which looks too much like gardening in slow-motion) and tap dancing (which just might give the arthritic toes too much of a wake-up call).

Wednesday 29th January

OK. Have just started a Lychnis trimming promenade down the driveway. Chunks of garden here obviously miss out on the irrigation, so I've got the hoses on. This will be a long process, making sure everything is watered well enough. No wonder some of the Bergenias are so small. Not a good look. One of the mature weeping cherries is even changing leaf colour prematurely, two plus months before autumn. Poor tree.

 Rather a pretty colour combination!
Dahlias and Cornflowers

After an hour in the dry mid-day heat of summer I started to wilt. If I was furry (e.g. a Border Collie) I would just have leapt into the irrigation pond to cool off. But being human (i.e. wimpy) I have slunk inside for lunch.

 Throw the stick!
Winnie by the Pond


Aargh! Too much heat. Too many dahlia dead-heads. Too much old Lychnis. And the orange Alstroemerias have invaded the driveway lawn. Oh well. Make the side of the Island Bed a big bigger, I reckon. Have a nice drink of water, get ready for my choir rehearsals. Note the plural.

 By the dog kennels.
Shrubby Lavatera


I'm excited about the dance class. On my registration email I described myself as a musical gardener. Implying not only a sense of timing but a certain mobility - dare I use the word agility? Hee hee...

Thursday 30th January

This morning in the cottage I re-read one of my semi-favourite gardening books - 'The Adventurous Gardener' by Christopher Lloyd. He always inspires me to improve my gardening habits, in this instance to take cuttings, and put plants in sensible places. So this morning I will check out sad or sulking plants in the driveway border.

As for cuttings? Shrubby Lavateras and the variegated Buddleia (which may be RIP, looks very sad in the dry garden behind the pond). Plus some of those tough yellow shrubby daisies which flower in winter. Name? Not sure.

Later this morning I am off to dig up some blackcurrant bushes from a friend's garden - a good excuse to go to the nearby cafe for lunch, hee hee. Hope they survive their mid-summer wrenching. The ornamental weeping maple we shifted out of her garden a couple of weeks ago is sulking big-time. Oops. The Azaleas we dug up are happy, even showing off some new leaf growth. All the shifted roses are sprouting. Mid-summer plant shifting...

Variegated Buddleia Flower

It's later, and the blackcurrants are here, pruned and planted. Poor things. I've identified several plants in the driveway border which need digging out and relocating : a sad rose, a Choisya ternata stuck behind the Pseudopanyx, some Bergenias. But have left them for now and am watering the area madly. My goodness this area is dry. Even some of the larger robust rhododendrons have drooping leaves.

OK. I'm off outside to dance down the driveway and shift the hoses again. Twinkle toes...

Dear reader...

At this point of my online year, 2020, the website data base goes down - for the whole of February! Just in case anyone was or is worried or puzzled. Sorry about that! Love from M.