Thursday, 10 May 2012


Silver Linings


I love the British weather. It is so capricious. It lures us into over-dressing or even, perish the thought, under-dressing - and challenges and exasperates us, but at least it has the decency to do so in a loveable rogue kind of way.


Raindrops on Geranium Rozanne = 'Gerwat'


Recently though, it has taken on a new predictable persona and all this rain, while great for water reserves, is just plain frustrating and if it doesn’t ease up soon, I fear the hens will develop webbed feet and our veggie patch will produce a bumper crop of dandelions and little else.


In an acute attack of optimism, I have been scouting for silver linings to all these rain clouds and of course, the plants have come up trumps. Who could ever tire of looking at raindrops collecting on the leaves of Alchemilla mollis?


Even drought tolerant plants such as those found in the gravel garden at The Beth Chatto Gardens in Essex, seem to be enjoying the rain and are putting on lush growth. Unfurling leaves are vibrant and fresh - here is a bluebell wood I spotted on my travels last weekend.
 

In my own garden, recently planted hedges are flourishing. Were it not for the rain, it could have been a very different story. After all, bare-root hedging and hosepipe bans are seldom happy bedfellows.

I must confess that I rarely enjoy mowing lawns, so the rain is a blessing as it would be foolhardy to mow wet grass. Had I been able and willing to mow, I might have missed out on these cowslips which have made themselves at home in the lawn. 



Like many people accustomed to the physical exertions of gardening, inactivity is taking its toll and my clothes are tightening by the day, so I am grateful to be involved in some small way with the forthcoming Olympics. I am no highly-tuned sportsperson so I am not a contender- unless competitive chocolate consumption is an Olympic event these days - in which case, sign me up.

Like many of the Olympic volunteers, I feel privileged to be part of an exciting occasion which gives me the opportunity to meet diverse, enthusiastic and supportive people. I feel the same about the blogosphere. I haven’t been here long, but I am having a wonderful time in this community of diverse, enthusiastic and supportive people. So despite the rain, I am happy!



25 comments:

  1. That bluebell wood looks enchanting! What a wonderful photo of lady's mantle too. Some garden plants are just fun :-)

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  2. Cow slips, how wonderful! And the forecast is improving too.

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  3. Hi Spurge - the bluebell wood is delightful - it was a treat to find it - obviously I didn't walk through it, but it was lovely to look in and enjoy!

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  4. Good morning Peter, you're right - the weather is back to its fickle ways! After being kept awake by a stormy night, I have woken to the sunniest day I've seen in weeks!

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  5. Most plants seem to be thriving in these wet conditions more than I can say for us humans.

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  6. They do, Elaine - and given an hour or two of sunshine, we will be thriving too!

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  7. There are the up sides to all the rain we've had, we just need to look for them. I love cowslips, it would have been a shame to mow them.

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    1. Yes it would, Jo. We were delighted to find them -now we know we have them, we will be able to allow them to colonise.

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  8. I don't think there is any other plant that holds rain drops so beautifully as ladies mantle.

    Glad your hedge is enjoying the rain.......and hope it gives it a good start.
    Love those cowslips in the grass, it was worth not mowing the grass just to see those little beauties.

    Have a lovely sunny weekend :0

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    1. Thank you Cheryl.

      I am having a lovely sunny weekend, although it is one of those lovely sunny weekends filled with plans and very little time to garden.

      Let's hope the sun returns next weekend!

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  9. The Alchemilla mollis photo is wonderful! I am always grateful for the rain, as a couple of droughts are still in my memory. At least when it rains, I might get some indoor chores done, which otherwise are often neglected!

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    1. I am deeply impressed that you confront your indoor chores when it rains - you are a true silver-lining seeker!

      Some of us just wander around taking photos and leave the cupboards in chaos!

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  10. Alchemilla with raindrops is one of my favorite things. We had a drought in March and April so I can't complain about all the rain we are getting now. How fun to be involved with the Olympics. you might get more comments if you removed that awful word verification that commenters have to go through. Many bloggers have done this with no problem.

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    1. I will have a look at that now, Carolyn. I am still finding my feet in the blogosphere and truly appreciate all the help I can get.

      Thank you for your advice!

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  11. If your hens develop webbed feet, doesn't that make them ducks ?
    Thank for faving me on Blotanical by the way. Much appreciated.

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  12. My pleasure Crystal - your blog's great!

    The children want me to get Indian Runner Ducks... the webbed-footed hybrid chicken-duck might be a happy compromise!

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  13. Beautiful posting... love your blog! How exciting to be part of the Olympics. P.

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    1. Thank you, Pam.

      I am very excited about the Olympics! It's a wonderful privilege to be involved and besides which, I am having such a lovely time!

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  14. I think I would do well in a chocolate eating competition as well :) I am looking forward to watching some of the events of the Summer Olympics. It will be fun.

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    1. I'm pleased you've been taking your chocolate-eating training seriously, Sage Butterfly!

      Yes - the Olympics will be lots of fun - the garden will be over-run with weeds by the time the Games are over!

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  15. Hi there, look at it this way, if you didn't have all the rain, you wouldn't have such amazing countryside :) Here in Malta, the little countryside that we have is already drying up, and we are only in May when all the plants are supposed to flourish!

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  16. Hi Gra - welcome - thank you for visiting and commenting on my blog.

    You're right, the countryside is so fresh and green and we do need the rain, although you clearly need the rain more in Malta.

    Here's hoping that you get some unseasonal rainfall before the holidaymakers searching for the sun arrive on your beautiful island.

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  17. What great photos and how refreshing to find someone who can still find a silver lining in this horrendous weather! I made a decision today to stop complaining about the rain and just get on with gardening. It's only water, I won't melt.

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  18. Hi gardeningforlawyers - thank you for taking the time to visit and comment.

    You might not melt, but I suspect my feet are dissolving. Having said that, I haven't compained about the weather at all today - then again, it hasn't rained.... there is hope!

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  19. In worst weather and situations, looking for silver linings will warm hearts.....

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