Tuesday, 2 March 2010

The Snowdrop Lady



We don't have a very large garden. The plot at the front has undergone several changes and is, yet again, work in progress - more about that in a later post. The back garden is far more established and now just evolves with the seasons and our growing children.

We have two greenhouses, a small fruit cage and some raised beds, accessed through a rose-covered arch in a picket fence, which screens the veg plot from the pretty bit nearer to the house. Although small this outdoor space has three seating areas - lovely views if you choose the right seat, some shade and a small paved area backing onto a south-facing garage wall. A bit too hot for me in the height of summer but a lovely crafting space in spring and autumn, as long as I take care to cover my work when making a cup of tea. The crows were using me for target practice all last year and by the end of the season their aim was faultless!

Our garden is very like our house in that it is a collection of plants and artifacts from family, friends and our previous homes. A laurustinus bush is a descendant from one I grew up with (I think that was the great-great-grandfather of ours). A house move has always been the result of careful planning and a period of striking cuttings and establishing a nursery bed. A spiky dragon tree is the descendant of one given as a house-warming present to my husband in his first home. A winter-flowering jasmine was a cutting from an elderly neighbour, now no longer with us, and so on.  The items which mean most to me (in this part of the garden) are the daffodils, snow drops, some white daisies, japanese anemonies and the lovely Victorian rope edging tiles which surround our herb bed outside the back door.

There is an old cottage in the centre of  the village where I grew up. It was rendered and whitewashed when I was a child but is now stripped back to its lovely old brickwork. Unfortunately the garden at the side of the house has now been re-developed. The front garden is that which a child would draw. A straight path leading to the front door with rose beds on either side. At this time of year the garden was a carpet of snowdrops. A passer-by once stopped to talk to the occupant and said that her grandson had been referring to the 'snowdrop lady'. His grandmother had been puzzled until he indicated the garden and said this was where the snowdrop lady lived.

Our rope edgings, and the ancestors of our daffodils, anemonies, daisies and snowdrops came from this garden. The Snowdrop Lady was my Grandmother and March 2nd was her birthday!


( For some reason, as a child I always gave her a primrose in a pot for Mothers Day. This slightly battered one has ventured out in our garden)



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Some of the items in my shop were inspired by my grandmother. The first choice needs no explanation. On most Sundays my Aunt would take Gran out for a drive. The destinations were dictated by the seasons. A bluebell wood always had to be included each year. Gran's garden had some huge lavender bushes. We used to hide behind one of them, watching the bees. She loved the scent and the colour of lavender and would have liked the colours in this patchwork.






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