Winter 2020

Not much more to be said about our current situation, but on the shortest day there’s a quietness about North Kent that makes this time of year even more unusual. There’s been some rain, some wind, some cold but mostly a combination of all the weathers including mild sunny afternoons and frosty mornings. Not much chance of a white Christmas (or so we are told) – but there will be treats and gifts and a fire.

In the garden its the ideal time to move trees and shrubs, so I have been busy.

A new hedge: this one beech, and another (alder buckthorn) to go in soon

The older beech has been trimmed, now sharper and wider against the winds

Most mornings are misty, rolling down the hill and disappearing by midday
Some leaves left on the sheltered parrotia
The fields were ploughed about a month ago
Seed-grown chimonanthus – first flowering on its 5th birthday
Dried remains of echinacea and variegated euphorbia
Golden miscanthus marking every winter breeze
Golden willow and dried love grass
Sunset on the shortest day

Autumn 2020

Wet grass in the mornings, sun lower in the sky, an amazing range of toadstools; it must be autumn. Time for moving things around, planting bulbs, and for finally getting the whole plot bunny-proofed. The autumn colours seem to get better by the hour. Then – just when they reach their finest – the leaves fall, lying around their former trees, food for worms. Everything ends, and there can be great beauty in these final moments.

Cotinus with acer ginnala ‘flame’
Euonymus alatus (foreground) and white mulberry (background)

Acer rubrum ‘October glory’

Euphorbia and sedum
Viburnum plicatum mariesii and various miscanthus
Zelkova serrata
Schizostylis coccinea ‘river lilly’
Liquidambar styraciflua
Callicarpa bodenieri ‘beauty berry’
Cercis canadensis ‘forest pansy’
Crataegus crus-galii ‘cockspur hawthorn’