April Review

April. A month that began with sunshine and laughter, and quickly deteriorated into a turbulent time for us.   Sunshine on new horse chestnut leaves against black skiesRegular readers will know the anguish and grief that this month has brought down upon us; I shall not dwell on this here but focus, instead, on the garden. We spent limited time in the garden in recent weeks, due to the turn of events, but our snatched moments here and there yielded respectable progress; building structures, weeding, sowing and planting, and a myriad of other bits and pieces that have kept us busy.

Seedlings in the greenhouse, early April

Tulips and honesty lit up the garden through the month, although the last week’s winds have pulled petals from the tulips and brought the largest clumps of honesty crashing down.

Honesty sprawled after storms

Undeterred by the weather, the borders have begun to fill with lush new foliage; aquilegias have pushed up tall flower stems, ready to flower, Anthriscus sylvestris ‘Ravenswing’ has similarly produced long dark stems, speckled at the tips with delicate white buds.

Anthriscus sylvestris 'Ravenswing' and Aquilegia 'Lime Sorbet'

A profusion of brilliant magenta flowers has appeared on the low-growing Geranium sanguineum, while Knautia macedonica continues to produce dark crimson pin-cushion flowers; nearby white Dicentra spectabilis hangs its hearts along the line and even Achillea ‘Walther Funcke’ has started to flower gently already. Geums, more dicentras, forget-me-nots, primroses, Centranthus ruber, aubretia, Omphalodes ‘Cherry Ingram’ … the list of blooms is long and varied – though the weeds are quickly multiplying up too!

Aubretia along edge of herb garden

The month ends for us with a litter of torn leaves and petals from the destructive force of recent winds; with an upside-down trampoline and broken branches, though the rain has called a temporary ceasefire, and the winds have dropped to ‘strong’.

Petals and leaflets strew the grass in front of the windswept border after the storm

Goodbye, April. I will not be sorry to see you go.

Visit the Patient Gardener for more end of April views. 

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18 thoughts on “April Review

  1. April has been rather turbulent and for you in particular and one can only hope that May will be more peaceful in more senses than one. Take solace in your lovely garden. Flowers-and weeds-will continually grow on.

    • Thank you. It has been a whirlwind in many ways; alas not just a nightmare but the stuff they are made from. I hope too that May is drier and calmer – and not just in the garden :S. Hope that your garden has survived the tempests outside unscathed.

  2. On the positive side – the rain has helped the garden become lush and will help it to survive should the drought eventually come.

    • Indeed. If only the winds had stayed away! We are one of the parts of the country that are not in drought conditions, and likely to remain so.

  3. April has been er, challenging certainly. Several weeks ago an elderly countryman scoffed at the idea of a ‘drought’ summer and confidently told me that we were in for a long, wet summer. That would solve my watering problem. Knautia flowers? Blimey. Again, you are way ahead of me.

    • Hmm, I hope that he meant a long hot summer, with plenty of welcome overnight showers…
      The knautia has not ceased flowering for the past few months, crazy thing…

  4. I’m envious of a knautia in flower! I’ve just been given 2 plants and hope they will perform as well for me. I’m a bit envious of the rain too, we’ve had some rain this month but nowhere near enough. Christina

    • I hope they do well for you, they are beautiful plants. Hm, it rained all night and long through the morning. The sun has only just broken through for the day now… I think we’ve had plenty of rain for the time being, alas I think this is just a temporary reprieve for us.

  5. It is amazing how a little pottering in the garden can help you get through difficult times. Sorry about your tulips.
    I dont really mind the rain as I am stuck in the office all week but as I am visiting friends in Wales this coming weekend I hope for all our sakes it stops soon
    Thanks for joining in again this month

    • The tulips haven’t lost any more petals – guess the change in wind direction benefited them at least. The orange ones are paler and definitely looser than they were, and most of the pink ones are still relatively intact.
      I hope that this weekend is fine, and you have a lovely time in Wales.

  6. Bad enough having the rain without the additional annoyance of strong winds. So unpredictable too – you would think a clump of honesty would be safe from damage. Lets hope the weather improves in May.

    • The winds were terrible. We are in a pretty exposed position, so used to some wind, but generally not quite as damaging as the weekend’s. I pulled out that clump of white honesty the other evening, since it had collapsed onto a nearby acer. The purple ones on the other side of the garden seem to have bounced back better.

  7. I enjoyed your April flowers Sara – we share some mutual friends :) The winds seemed to stay clear of us at the weekend but not the rain. No need for watering though which must be regarded as a plus. I hope that May is kinder to you.

    • Glad that you escaped the winds. There’s always a silver lining to the weather, the garden is obviously flourishing with all the rainfall (and the weeds). Thank you…

  8. A bit late catching up, but I’m with you on the ‘**** off, April’ front – what a month (I didn’t do an EOM posit because I was at a funeral, and that just sums it up as a month, weather and all).

    Your seedlings are looking really healthy though – lots of promise for the future. I’m going to go and shout at mine right now.

    • Yeah, what a month. I can’t even begin to quantify the horror it held. Think I have moved on to denial now, mind… Commiserations for your loss and lousy month too.

      I hope that your seedlings obey orders…

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