I always love the optimism at this time of the year – the expectation of what’s to come in the summer.
But it can also be a bit daunting as there’s 101 things to do: all the winter tidying you should have finished, all the beds you should have prepped and all the seeds you need to sow.
But then there’s that wonderful feeling when you get on with the jobs and you think, ‘Oh, it wasn’t that hard after all, and look at what I’ve achieved’.
And to remind me that it is worth the effort the tulips I planted at the end of last year have started to come out. I’d had totally forgotten what it was I’d put in there but knew there’d be some irises and tulips at some point.
To my surprise I rounded the corner, taking the barrow full of bindweed roots to the bonfire, and suddenly abandoned my task to take a look. I was so excited.
You have to understand that this is the first spring in my grown-up house where I’ve done anything. Last winter I was knee deep in breast milk and phooey nappies.
The beautiful Tulip Foxtrot were opening up by the front door. They have a bowl-shaped blossom and remind me of peonies, which I also love, and are cream and light pink. Very English garden.
I felt pride in a way I’d not experienced before. It was a mix of pure joy to see them and then a realisation that it was all down to me (and mother nature).
The other great thing about this time of year is the chance to get little ones outdoors for even longer without the fear of cold. I’ve always been a little bit ‘throw on a jumper, all-in-one and hat and they’ll be fine’. But it’s definitely more relaxing knowing my daughter can wear less clothing and move a bit more easily to eat her next piece of dirt.
I may be going a bit overboard with the vegetables but as it’s my first year with a big area to properly plant I’m experimenting with amounts. I’ve planted 8 rows (about 3m in length) of potatoes, two of snips and beetroot, 3 1/2 rows of carrots (two different sorts), half a row of spinach and a row of lettuce.
There’s another bed to fill for brassicas, peas, beans, courgettes and some spaghetti squash. My husband is not at all keen on the latter but i’m hoping it’ll be a hit with children. I just need to sort the bed out first checking for bindweed and creating a nice fine till. In short – hard work.
Over and out then… the garden beckons.