|canary creeper grown from last year's seed|
Unfortunately at work, half-full isn't acceptable. We have mid-year appraisals at this time of year. It's an opportunity to review work-done with the management, assess achievements & shortfalls and reschedule tasks to be completed by year-end in order to fulfil objectives set at the beginning. If I had approached my gardening activities in the same way I would probably have much more to show by now. However in January, I emphasised that there would be no target-setting in my garden, as I wanted it to be my pleasure and escape from the pressures of the world outside. I did make some Promises though, which I believe I have honoured so far ... almost.
|rose in the right border ...|
|... and view from the kitchen sink|
"Experiments with Plants will continue" - I didn't think too much about these words when I wrote them in January but they are meaningful now that I have been thinking about the scope of this blog and Diana's question "why am I blogging?" It's what I do now instead of sitting in front of the TV. I often hear about people having blogging overload and how interacting with other bloggers gets too time-consuming. I have avoided this by keeping a careful life-work-blog balance. (It also helps that there isn't much to blog about in my garden ...) Only a few of the people I know in the real world are into gardening. By blogging, I have been delighted to "meet" people from various countries with a similar interest. I've learnt a lot and been inspired. I can't remember being inspired by anything else before. What I appreciate most, is that we all have different styles & strong principles concerning our own gardens, yet we are not judgmental about others.
roses in the woodland
"no display-ready plants will enter my garden" - This was not really a promise, more an explanation of why my garden looks the way it does ie.half-full. This year I have tried my best to nurture my inherited plants; I have grown more by transplanting suckers, from bulbs & seeds and exchanging seedlings with my neighbour. I haven't even been tempted to buy plants.
"foxglove measurements will be tabulated and correlated with flowering performance" - This was written when I didn't have a clue if my foxgloves would even flower. Luckily they did. It was the only real "experiment" that I carried out this year, even then I just discovered what gardeners seemed to know already, I guess we are all scientists learning by trial and error. My plan to create a sub-species of foxgloves was flawed because I didn't take into account interference from pollinators doing their job while I was at work. I never bothered to notice what bees get up to till this year; they've moved on to the hebes since the foxgloves died. I assume breeding experiments are only possible if plants are grown in isolation and hand-pollinated. I must try harder.
"Live and let live with the Slugs & Snails" - When I started gardening it was all about the plants. I never imagined that six months later my phobia of creepy-crawlies would be almost cured, encouraging me to deal with others, that I'd be taking photos of slugs and snails and becoming a bit curious about them. I'm convinced that when they eat leaves, the plant's reaction is to flower prolifically so its species can survive. It's not possible to prove this though because there are no slug-free areas in my garden to grow control samples for comparison.
|my last broccoli "sedum" ...|
|... to burst into flower|
|mixed sweet peas|
"Have trust in Mother Nature" – Before I started gardening, I didn't need to plan or have hopes for next year because it would certainly be the same as this year. My garden is teaching me to be hopeful in a way that I never have been. Starting with little hopes like "I hope this seed germinates", then "I hope this seedling grows", "I hope this plant flowers" leading to bigger hopes not just about gardening. Maybe they will come true too.
|love sun rose-despite its scent of cheap perfume|
|fuschia & late-developing hollyhock|
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