……. So wrote John Keats in 1818 in his epic poem Endyminion. Well actually, not quite:-
A thing of beauty is a joy for ever:
Its loveliness increases; it will never
Pass into nothingness; but still will keep
A bower quiet for us, and a sleep
Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.
Now that the flower beds have been reclaimed, it is time to address the woodland area, the lawn, the water terraces. It’s not a big job pulling weeds from the barked surface of the woodland paths and steps. The couch grass, the fleshy stemmed cranesbills and the straggly vetch give up easily. I leave a few violets and primroses in place. Nick will need to strim the long grass, although Teddy, our Littlest Pirate, pronounces it fit for a bear hunt when he comes to visit. Charlotte and I sit on one of the wooden benches and look out over Godalming’s valley to the other hillsides feeling very much on top of the world.
The lawn is gradually recovering from the major damage inflicted by badgers and possibly foxes during the cold wet months. They dig for worms, beetle larvae and perhaps crocus bulbs? I’ve filled the depressions and transplanted rooted grass weeded from other parts of the garden. At least it is now mowable.
The water terrace is hugely improved by the drastic pruning of evergreens that have encroached across the paving. I derive great pleasure from weeding underneath the Skimmia and thinning out the comfrey. I’ve emptied a number of pots which contained a medley of bulbs and retrieved a large number of grape hyacinth. I’m not sure I like grape hyacinths; they can look dreadfully naff in some situations but I think the new space in the Skimmia corner is perfect for them. They will push up through the comfrey and pink cranesbills that cope with the rather sparse conditions there.
Before we leave 88 to the temporary care of The Legend who is working in Flat 4 and doing a marvellous job too, I have to move all the pots down to the small courtyard at the back of the house. Here they will be shaded for the forthcoming week and have a chance to really put down new root growth as a prelude to placement in their new surroundings.