Spring comes slowly to the Linden Walk. The epicormic stems at the base of the lime trees may have had their buds unfurling, but the canopy is only now showing a hint-haze of green. All in all, it has been a very strange month. My favourite on-line gardener, Charles Dowding, who gardens commercially down in Devon, says April has been colder than March, and the nights colder than January. I can believe it. Even on bright sunshine days the air has teeth, as if blowing off Arctic glaciers.
Surprisingly, the icy blasts do not seem to have deterred the fruit trees: cherry, damson, greengage have all been flowering magnificently, and now the apple trees are bursting with blossom. In the woods the primroses, celandines and violets have been flowering since February and now the bluebells are joining them. The wild garlic, too, is running amok in the shady parts of the Linden Field. Meanwhile out on the farms, the fields are already brassy gold with oil seed rape flowers, and the wheat behind the house is growing tall and lush, which is also surprising given many weeks without a drop of rain.
All the seasonal confusion is causing this gardener to dither more than usual: shall I shan’t I sow, pot on, harden off, plant out? One can only adopt the trial and error position and be ready with the horticultural fleece to protect the vulnerable. I have at least managed to get the potatoes and onion sets in the ground and planted out, with protection, some climbing pea seedlings and broad beans. And I have also ventured to plant out some tomato plants and one aubergine inside my polytunnel where the most successful production otherwise is a bed of overwintered coriander which has recently made its own small forest. (Never managed that before).
Of course when I go gardening, I’m still wrapped up in my winter gear – sweaters, scarf, hat, padded parka. The allotment is on an exposed slope above the town, and when the sun goes in, it’s been pretty bleak up there. But then all that clobber gets in the way of many spring season tasks. So please, please, May, could you just turn down the icicle winds. And perhaps bring us a bit of warmth. Oh yes and some gentle rain at regular intervals.
On and around the Linden Walk:
Over the garden fence:
Potatoes planted at the allotment; overwintered field beans behind:
Come evening, still need to spark up the log burner:
31 thoughts on “The Changing Seasons: April In Wenlock”
I do love to see the Linden Walk…..
That’s very lovely of you, Sue – I mean, not to get bored with it. It’s become a bit of a fixation for me – the small changes, its full-on greenness, or its winter-stark drama. Perhaps there’s some element of Darwin’s ‘thinking path’ about it too.
I love avenues of trees…..
Me too. I miss the big seasonal changes in nature (though not the biting cold) and love being able to vicariously enjoy your seasons in a spot I’ve come to know via your posts.
I’m so happy that you come here, Su, in spirit anyway, which is a big thing of itself. We don’t actually need to haul our physical selves all over the planet to know and love other places.
Thank you Tish; you are a very welcoming host. I suspect that virtual enjoyment of other places is going to become increasingly common one way or another.
Thank you, Aggie.
Amazing how the plants are carrying on regardless. Your last two sentences sum up my feelings too.
It’s not just just being wimps, is it, Brian. It really is bitter out of the sun.
In return for the welcome photos of spring, I’ sending you 10 degrees F, as we’re up into the 90’s here. I can see my garden envy beginning to surface as well. Ah, well, at least I can indulge here. 🙂
10 degrees F gratefully received, Janet. G. tells me this morning the cold spell is here for another 2 weeks!
The garden and weather’s mysteries do keep us guessing, Tish. Perhaps you should let those apple blossoms be your guide? I am very impressed by your coriander. I’m looking forward to seeing some sun filtering through your linden walk. Perhaps next month ….
Listen to the apple blossom – I like that idea, Tracy. And I will try and catch some sunshine on the Linden Walk 🙂
I love to virtually wander along your Linden walk Tish, virtually observing the changing seasons. I am a bit obsessed with the idea of “Shinrin Yoku” Japanese “forest bathing” and your Linden walk would be a delightful place to experience it. Such a beautiful selection of photos that bring back so many memories of an English spring.
So happy you enjoy this space too, Pauline. You have me intrigued with the concept of ‘forest bathing’. I shall explore further.
Lots of research showing how good being in nature is for our health and well being.
I can totally believe that, Pauline.
The consensus seems to be that we cannot get enough of your Linden Walk Tish. Always a delight to visit. Despite the sunshine it has been bitterly cold down here too, though without the frosts thank goodness. April in the past few years has seen heatwaves in other parts of the country, so maybe we’ve forgotten how fickle a month she can be. I have enjoyed the dry, bright days despite the cold winds. Nothing like sunshine to make you feel happier.
Yes, sunshine is probably the best medicine all round – for body, mind and spirits.
Loved your walk Tish.
Glad you could come too, Ana Maria.
Spring’s just teasing us but it’ll get there in the end!
That is very hopeful of you, James. Did you read the met office report; coldest April in 99 years. And the driest.
Then with monsoon levels of rainfall today the drought has spectacularly ended! And cold though it was, April was just lovely this year – as it was in a different way last year. But best of all, in a few weeks time it’ll be Summer and Summer’s great in England whatever the weather. Well that’s my positive spin anyway.
Well spun, sir.
Such lovely images to represent your April. Here is to a warmer May for you.
Thank you for those warm wishes 🙂
Ah, so beautiful Tish!
I can imagine that if seeds are planted too early, the sudden cold & frost could hurt them!