Thursday, 7 March 2013

Holes and Hellebores

I can’t pretend I’m not loving this sprinkle of rain today but I must say we do need more, much more. 

Working on the garden yesterday, the soil was still ominously dry for the beginning of March.  Normally I would be thinking about starting to mulch some of my perennials at this time of year to help keep the ground moist after a precious winter soaking. However, I’m not entirely convinced the ground is moist enough to warrant a capping of mulch at the moment. So I shall be patient and optimistic in the hope we have more Suffolk precipitation (obviously before a gorgeous sunny drier summer - asking for too much?!)

I seem to be overrun with moles at the moment.  I haven’t actually seen any of the cute beasts, I just keep sinking into their runs as I weed and last week I noticed an increase of molehills around my Clive Greaves (not a euphemism but the name of one of my scabious, actually 'scabious' doesn't sound much better, but I know all you knowledgeable flower lovers out there know what I mean).   Apparently, last year’s wet weather increased mole populations and as the worms come to the surface in wet soil so do the moles. I’m very protective of my worms.   When I first started the cutting garden my worm sightings were minimal but after much enrichment of the soil their appearances have increased. So the thought of the moles munching their way through my worms doesn’t fill me with love for these velveteen rodents.  Now, if they just ate the slugs, that would be different! I shall be watching closely over the next few months to ensure that the moles hopefully make their way outside the perimeter of the garden wall and that they remain there.

Lots of productive work was done in the garden yesterday, preparing beds as well as picking hellbores and here are a few pictures to share of some single and double burgundy beauties.

Beautiful ruffles like a ballerina's tutu.

Trying a sneaky peek underneath.

The fresh, tender, deep burgundy leaves and buds have a superb gloss to them and the buds are as equally gorgeous as the open flowers.

I couldn't resist making a floating tapestry out of the hellebores, heather and catkins.  The mix of textures in these flowers is heavenly, blousy, waxy, dotty, spiky, flowing, I want to dive in there.

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