My hair isn’t the only thing I’ve been trying to grow over the last few months. Mummy readers will totally relate to looking like the secateurs had free rein over their hairline in the months following childbirth. Six months ago, my back garden became my comfort zone when venturing out with a newborn and a three year old felt daunting and seemingly impossible. My neighbour passed some baby tomato plants over the fence. I planted them in two grow-bags and picked away at ripe tomatoes with the kids all summer long.
Let’s rewind quickly to four years ago when my husband and I first moved into our home in Walkden, Salford. The garden was overgrown with conifers and laurel trees. Mostly. It took us, and our family, a couple of weeks to clear the garden and slowly over a year or two we built the raised flower border you can see above. Well the wood is raised, the same cannot be said for the soil, which has taken us a while to fill in – the border is huge! It is looking less like a trench lately.
Last year, in the raised border, we planted as much as our ‘Wedding Garden Gift Fund’ would allow. We loved watching the space transform into a mishmash of plants and trees – there isn’t really a theme. Just plants we like the look of and smell of, such as Pelargonium graveolens (lemon-scented geranium), the mosquitoes hate it! Bonus.
This spring, we sowed our first ever bag of wild flower seed! Whilst I sat breastfeeding the baby, I would watch it grow taller. Summer arrived and so did the bees – that was it, I was hooked! Who knew that bees LOVE purple flowers (more on that another time).
Phacelia Tanacetifolia also called purple tansy
Borago officinalis also called star-flower
Earlier this year, it became clear that I wanted to understand plant biology, create my own allotment (growing and eating your own food is so much fun and very rewarding) and build confidence when it comes to cuttings and propagation. In September, my journey began with the Royal Botanic Garden of Edinburgh, studying remotely on their RHS Level 2 certificate in the Principles of Horticulture. Having not studied for a loooooooong time, my blog will hopefully help cement the vast amount of information in my brain. There are over 330,000 plants, all with their own individual binomial name (two-name system in Latin). Let’s just say I am glad there is such a thing as the Post-it-note. Although, I don’t think my family will agree. I maybe need to get Amazon’s Alexa on board with the naming system. She could really help me out, as opposed to just reminding me when to take the washing out the machine.
And last but by no means least, if my blog inspires just one of my friends to give gardening a go, then happy days!
“It does not do well to dwell on dreams and forget to live, remember that.” – J.K Rowling.
Time for a brew!