It’s been a poignant time of year, as Autumn always is for me. But this year it’s been even more so. It’s the time when nature reminds us that death is as much a part of life as life itself, and this year that reminder has been greater than any other year.
We’ve been busy this weekend tidying our garden. Delaying the cutting back of the meadow patches in the paddock until our time off in October – when they will be cut back and left to re-seed. I will definitely be asking for bee bombs this Christmas to get my meadow patches ablaze next summer.
But this year the biggest thing for me is allowing things to have their time, not rush them along because we have changed seasons, and as if to say thank you some have certainly had a last hurrah, with new blossoms and bursts
Some of the pots and baskets have finally had their day, not least the sweet peas that have now gone to sweet pea heaven . But listening to a weather forecaster she mentioned how important it is to keep the flowers going, enabling the bees to collect as much pollen as possible to survive the winter, and it resonated. So we have continued to water some of our plants and pots, and look at the ones that are left!
The basket on the right of the picture had been at the front of the house, but as Autumn blew in it got battered by the winds and began to look very sorry for itself. It was so tatty RD brought it around the back with the intention of adding it to the compost; but instead it thanked us by producing even more flowers, with the leaves of the trailing plant (I have no idea of it;s name) now turning a beautiful autumnal purple. Bless it, it’s starting to give up the ghost now but I don’t have the heart to throw it away until all of the flowers have have their day.
Whilst RD mowed the paddock I moved the pots about to both bring out the best in them, but also to keep them warmer during the colder nights. The bush Fuchsia you see here were left over from last year. They were tiny, but I put them in the garage and kept them going and just look at them. Beautiful autumnal colours, still going strong. The standard Fuchsia were rescued from Lidl, where they had been left to die un-watered and unloved. All of them have been fabulous all summer and we will have the added bonus of them coming back each year.
The basket on the left has been fabulous all summer, with its’ never ending blooms, and it nearly went in the compost on Saturday, but it has an ivy in it and I love baskets of just ivy. So I will nurture it to give me winter colour – Ivy covered in frost is a site to behold. In the meantime the lobelia seemed to have had a second wind, so I tidied it up and it has burst forth again.
On the right of this picture is a basket that I shared with you all right at the beginning of the summer, when things were very different. It has not stopped blooming in the last almost six months. The begonias, and the stark lime contrast of the creeping jenny are just beautiful and the ice cream sundae verbena has suddenly burst back into life.
The hydrangea on the left has grown like a triffid and I have fed it a food that ensures that it remains blue, as it was starting to turn pink, as is the want of hydrangeas. All of the plants here will stay here now for the winter, it is quite a sheltered spot which will hopefully protect them from the Donegal winds.
The bench has been moved from amongst the new orchard trees, to a place that catches the Autumn and Winter sun, and some of the happy hydrangeas have come with it. They will not only provide late colour for us as we sit and drink our tea in the late seasonal sun, but they too are a wonder of nature if you leave the heads on them through the winter and they become covered in frost.
I love to sit and look out of my window when I am working at the flowers, making the most of their lives, and having one last hurrah as if to say thank you for caring for me.
Over this summer I have often sought solace in my garden, the flowers have helped lift my spirit when I have been down. And now, when some of them know that their lives are coming to an end they emblazon, their sign being don’t give up, live in the moment, for the only moment is now, enjoy it all. Things will change, but there will be beautiful things in that change, no matter how hard it is. Life is for always trying, and seeing something beautiful every day.