The Blooming Old Gardener
The March winds are the morning yawn
“Springtime is the land awakening. The March winds are the morning yawn.” - Lewis Grizzard.
The windy weather we’ve had this month reminded me that the Romanies named March ‘bavalyakero’, or ‘month of the winds’. Not a good time for the Romanies as these winds could blow over a traditional wagon. And we’ve had some blustery winds and heavy rain this month.
It’s a busy month too. There’s been St David’s day, Commonwealth Day, Mothering Sunday and St Patricks Day. Spring has started. And we still have Palm Sunday, Holi and the start of both Passover and British Summer Time to come. It’s not easy to celebrate at the moment, though. So, forget all about that and take a quiet moment in the garden. Close your eyes and listen to the garden sounds around you.
The Bloomers garden has been a bit neglected because of lockdown and the limitations to those who normally help in the garden. But plants are beginning to recover from the winter now. So, there are buds and shoots all over. Some are very visible and others are hidden by last year’s growth that died down over the winter. I am currently cutting off the dead parts of plants to encourage new growth. It’s a long job, but soon we can start working in small teams again.
I’m avoiding sowing and planting in the garden until the containers have been rearranged and weed suppressant put down. Definitely a team job. So, if anyone fancies growing some geraniums, marigolds, lavender or sunflowers at home, that would be great. Then you can plant them in the Bloomers garden in a month or so.
It’s full moon on the 28th. If planting by the moon, this is a good time to sow crops that grow above ground. So, I have started sowing some of my brassica, beans, herbs and chard at home, ready for the garden. I have to remember not to sow the whole packet when I grow seeds. I’m not going to repeat the mistake of finding myself growing 140 tomato plants in a bedsit!
I have several packets of vegetable seeds spare, if anyone wants to have a go at growing things like cabbage, parsnips, leeks and lettuce for their veg garden at home. Message me for the list of seeds using the Old Town Bloom Facebook page or WhatsApp.
Looking after the Bloomers garden isn’t just growing, or even working in the garden. There are making and painting jobs and a few creative ones too. And lots you can do at home. I’ve been collecting veg signs from the garden and station. Some have faded and need to be repainted or touched up. So that has been a job to do at home and great for lockdown.
The garden has two old walls, both have some interesting surfaces and some disrepair. Over the years we have tried to make the wall under the mural more interesting. Remember the summer of Lego bricks? Well, one year we planted between the bricks. We tried all sorts of alpines and ferns. But nothing survived. However, this year I’ve noticed ferns growing in the gaps. I wonder if these seeded from the ones we planted there?
The ‘Old Town Bloom Connects’ sessions are going well. My birdseed cones from the first session are hanging in my garden at home. They are being used by my local blackbird. The seed bombs session from last week also told us a how to make our gardens more attractive to bees. The timing was great as we are starting our wildflower area in the Bloomers garden now. We also learnt a lot about bees and what their roles are in the hive. This week’s session on herb growing had us supplied with pots, seeds and a peat free growing medium. Lovely volunteers do a weekly pack delivery for each session, so that we can do an activity. I really look forward to it.
The Blooming Old Gardener