A heavy frost a few mornings ago shocked me into action. A large number of pots containing plants brought from 88 have been waiting in the wings, sitting on the shingle area at the side of the house. Some of these plants came with the main consignment of all our worldly goods on this side of the Channel. Others had been cared for by my sister Liz in Gillingham. Most are perennials, divisions from the principal rootstock, some of that planted by Andy ten years ago.
I had earmarked Thursday and Friday as possible days to resume the Dorset coastal walk which Rollo and I embarked on two years ago. A tumble and broken wrist put the brakes on this enterprise and 2010 has been a year filled with activities which have impeded resumption of our walk. On Thursday I took a phonecall from Rollo who was proposing a day working in my garden. Yes please………..
We cut back spent growth and worked our way along the hedge which forms our southern boundary. By the end of the afternoon the garden appeared far more controlled with empty spaces in the border very much in evidence.
Friday morning dawned and first on my list was to put a call through to Matthew, boss of the removals firm who moved us from 88 to TOW. I needed to talk to him about the missing black cabin bag which I had packed with jewellery and underwear, in order to carry it with me as I travelled to Sunbury, and then to Maiden Newton, before taking possession of TOW. It was mistakenly loaded onto the van on the first day and I have been ever since regretting that I did not insist that it be restored to my keeping during the move.
As it happened there was a voice message on my mobile, it was Matthew asking me to call him. It is over a month since we moved, so I was expecting the worst, and you could have knocked me sideways with a feather when Matthew told me that the cabin bag had turned up, in one of his warehouses, having been mistakenly placed with a whole lot of other bags and cases being stored for a well-known luggage manufacturer. What a Revelation!
Feeling very buoyant, I spent a good part of the day in the garden emptying pots and planting out. In go the Eucomis, Penstemon, Geranium, Iris unguicularis, Schizostylus, Papaver, Gladiolus, Centaurea, Lamnium, Campanula. My small flight of fancy is to plant a mixed row of Hemerocallis and Agapanthus along the northern end of the strip that will function as a potagerie – a much nicer expression than kitchen garden. This is much against the better judgement of Nick and Rollo who think a veg. patch is just that!! But it will be visible to visitors as they come to our front (side) door. And I got the idea from the exotic garden at the Chateau de Vauville …… at least, the companion planting of these two in a border.
The best bit of the afternoon is to round up all the empty pots and stack them up, like a huge set of kiddy nesting beakers, ready to tuck away for another time. There are at least 30 – that is 30 pots that I won’t have to worry about watering when they are in danger of drying out.