It's Wednesday today. My elder brother's birthday, as it happens, but closer to home, it is Flower Day.
A lovely girl - a contemporary of my two sons - has returned to the area and opened a café in the village. It is delightfully called Pudding Row and, although I have not yet sampled any puddings, her bread and jam - both homemade - are dangerously good. We dropped in late one afternoon and she had sold out of cake (and pudding), but offered us some toast instead.
She contacted me several months ago, to ask if I would supply her with little table posies from the garden.
She got, poor girl, short shrift at the time.
'Yes,' I said vaguely. 'No problem', and promptly forgot about it. I was in Dublin, building the show garden for Bloom.
However, when I finally got back home, I did get my act together, and on Wednesday mornings I take little jugs of flowers to adorn her tables.
Because they need to last until Sunday evening, when she closes for two (much needed) days off, I don't pick them them night before.
But most Wednesdays this summer, I have been out picking in the rain, so this morning's sunshine made a welcome change, although I still needed wellies as everything is permanently soaked.
The rain has played wily beguiled with my garden this year. And in my absence, my garden has played puck with me. It is a sorry mess. The weeds are running riot, none of the early perennials have been cut back, and all the worst imaginable seed heads are wafting where they will.
The endless rain means I can rarely get out to call it to order.
The only - small - consolation is that, because it's such a cold, wet summer, lots of plants are still blooming that would generally be over and done with by now, so I haven't missed out as I might have done.
This Year's Weed is the minor rose bay willow herb. Minor is probably not its official title, but I've had enough official titles to last me a good while this year. You have to submit a complete plant list to the judges at Bloom, and, not having given the judging end of Bloom a thought, I planted quite wantonly, so mine ran to six pages. In Latin.
And inevitably, the final list was compiled at midnight the night before submission.
So I'm quite happy to go with any old handle at the moment, and 'minor' will do just fine.
Whatever it calls itself, it is everywhere.
When I was a child, I thought to myself: 'One day I shall have four children, and I will call them Rose, Bay, Willow and Herb.'
It looks like that has come back to bite me on the bum.
Still, it could be worse. At least they pull out easily. If the sun only shone a bit more often, I might have a chance to get out there to pull them!
The bees are not happy. Our bee man told me they are starving to death in all this rain, and has had to feed them emergency supplies to keep them going. But happily, my soaking garden is full of birds and frogs. Wherever you move, something leaps.
They are totally invisible in the dense jungle that has taken over, but I hope they are eating morning, noon and night. A rainy summer is a slug's idea of paradise, but a surfeit of slugs is probably an endless cream tea for a frog or a bird.
Yum yum. Pudding Row all round!
|Bine's wonderful photo of a frog wallowing in our pond|