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  • Writer's pictureThe Blooming Old Gardener

Turn your face to the sun

“Turn your face to the sun, and shadows follow behind you.” – Maori Proverb

I’m looking forward to seeing lots of sunflowers growing in the garden. We have started sowing their seeds in the garden as well as growing them at home ready to plant next month. We usually plant a few each year, but this year we are hoping to fill any spare space in the garden with sunflowers. So if you see a stick in a container, it’s to warn you that sunflowers have been planted there. This is the national flower of Ukraine. So the sunflowers are to show our support and of course links in with next month’s Eurovision. I don’t think we will have any in flower by then though. I love the way that the young flower heads turn to face the sun. Looking at them always makes me smile and think of the summer.

April has been a mixed month weather wise, but there have been lots of sunny patches to help things grow. So, as usual, the garden has lots of weeds. This is balanced out by plants starting to flower too, thank goodness. We have been busy in the garden, getting rid of patches of nettles and brambles that have started to appear. Along with weeding, tidying and getting rid of broken containers and dead plants. Volunteers have been taking our rubbish to the local tip. Tim, our friendly lawn mower, has given the grass it’s first cut of the year. The potted grasses have had a haircut.

Apart from the sunflowers, we don’t plan to plant anything new in the garden. Focusing on the shrubs and perennials we already have there, by moving them to larger containers, so that they need watering less often. No extra veg is being planted, so the herbs in the raised beds can take these over.

There’s been other activity in the garden too, with egg hunts over the Easter holidays. A local business Homesmart Lettings hid Easter related treats around the garden. I found six eggs and toys on one visit. But I was told that I was too old to take them home. It was a lovely way to keep our younger (or young at heart) visitors happy though.

Our bug friends have started to appear. Sunny days mean we are getting bees and butterflies in the garden now. Our early flowering plants are there to give them the nectar they need. Bugingham Palace may look quiet, but lift up a stone or move some sticks and you will find creatures that are coming alive.

One of the things I love about the garden is how people add to it. On an Easter visit I found a carved stump there. I am now trying to work out what the initials SF stand for. Any ideas?

The Blooming Old Gardener

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