The blossoms of spring

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The apple, pear, damson and plum blossom has been and gone in my fledgling orchard. The beginnings of the damson fruit, pea-sized as well as coloured, are now growing on the tree. The flowering currant, wild cherry and magnolia have finished blossoming too and what’s left of their petals are blowing about amongst the grass. It is now the turn of the hawthorn and the larger, majestic trees.

Our village has dozens of horse chestnut trees and their white or red blossom dances above me as I drive along the country lane. They look magnificent. I have made a mental note as to which ones are red so I can collect the conkers in autumn and grow some for myself. Bringing up the rear and taking their time are the two giant ash trees we have in the garden. Like my cat, they do things at their own pace.

Almost languorously the dark buds finally burst open to reveal the fresh green leaves within. The buds are still opening as I write. Everywhere you turn there are signs of growth. The cherry laurels, with small buds bursting out and the light green tips on the edges of the Christmas trees. Each one provides me with reassurance that the plant has taken. My baby trees are doing well. The poplars have all grown leaves - last year my poplars did not take which was most disappointing. The willows too are looking strong. Even the ones I thought were duds have pale green growth emerging from the bottom. The scots pine looks amazing as it proudly puts on new growth, tall and erect, growing towards the sky.

Earlier this spring we went through a dry spell. Unbelievably, after all the rain during the winter, I had to water these young trees myself. Now, with the rain pouring down and the sun coming out behind the clouds, you can almost see the scots pine growing in front of your eyes. You just cannot beat rainwater.


I have two standard hawthorns that have just come out into flower over the last couple of days. A Crimson Cloud (pictured above) and Pauls Scarlet. Both are just stunning and provide beautiful colour now much of the cherry blossom has finished. In my new garden the alliums are growing amazingly well. The sweet Williams are also showing great promise, as are some Sarah Raven cut flower seeds I sowed at a similar time as the wildflowers.

As for the wildflowers in the meadow? Well, I’m watching and waiting. I have buttercups. I have forget-me-nots. I have bluebells. But the wildflowers are taking their time, just like the ash. Every morning I peer over the area I dug out and sowed, and every morning I can barely see any change. A few specks popping through the earth maybe? Is it a wildflower? Or is it another weed? I am impatient, but after asking advice, I was told to wait a while longer. Apparently when it happens it can be very quick from just a few small shoots. So I’m crossing my fingers. Lets hope next month I’ll have exciting wildflower news to share.

Thanks for reading,