This one is going to be a bit of a brain dump …
These golden-yellow beauties have just come out in synchronised lush profusion, lining both sides of the walkway just behind our house.
They weren’t there last week, probably won’t be there next week. Certainly not at this vivid peak of radiant perfection that has transformed this pathway into our very own yellow brick road.
Miniature sunflowers? No, actually … they’re weeds … corn marigolds, my know-it-all friend Google tells me.
I step away from these mellow yellow beauties and look across at the back of our house, and this is what I see.
All spring and summer long, I am surprised by joy as, one after another, splendid guests arrive unannounced, with nothing to declare but their unexpected beauty
This overspill, this uncultivated, riotously neglected profusion of everything that has either squeezed out the back of our garden fence, or has just taken root and burst up from the soil … is fantastic to behold.
Over the years we’ve put a lot of thought — and quite a few bob — into our actual garden, an oasis of constant delight, in wind, rain or shine.
You buys your seeds, plants and flowers every year; you puts them in your border or in your pots; and you sits back and watches them sway, play, and permeate the very air with their aromatic charms, and draw a constancy of birds, bees and butterflies to this enduring garden party extravaganza.
And then there are those glorious accidents, the ones that have nothing whatsoever to do with your plans or your pernickety interventions.
All spring and summer long, I am surprised by joy as, one after another, splendid guests arrive unannounced, with nothing to declare but their unexpected beauty.
These exotic roses have just emerged, flouncing out of their pots like cheeky can-can dancers
Don’t really know how they got there, what wind their procreators floated in on, or how long they will stay … they just pitch up, hang their multi-hued hats in pots or beds, and stay to an end of their own devising.
How I love these gallant, errant wanderers that show up unannounced in our L-shaped haven.
It’s that mix of the planned and the random blow in that really makes our garden glow.
Here are some of my favourites, ones that are out now and I can capture with my phone camera.
First, the anticipated ones.
These exotic roses have just emerged, flouncing out of their pots like cheeky can-can dancers.
We bought the rosebush only weeks ago, and were not expecting this exquisite payoff quite so early.
Then there are our routinely astonishing passion flowers.
The more I look at these ravishing creations, the more I see. Architectural form meets unfeigned beauty and the result is symmetrical, three-dimensional sublimity.
Our friend the bee is doing his business on one of our fragrant honeysuckles.
And here are a few of those party-crashers I’ve been talking about.
Like this single blue one which popped out just the other day.
A cornflower, I think … but isn’t he or she splendid? The deep, rich blue, the cheery, insouciant mien …
We had cornflowers a few years back, pink and blue, but, as things go with nature, they had disappeared, until this lone hero reared their perky little head.
Then pause a while to contemplate this little symphony of colour and grace that sprang up at the foot of our thickening expanse of bamboo this summer.
Up they have pushed through the stones we laid here.
One of the greatest joys each year is to just to see what what shows up, grows up
Now normally, the little green sprigs that spring up between the pebbles here, I just assume they are weeds and routinely pluck them before I can find out.
These ones were out of sight and born to blush unseen, for all they cared, but pottering around one day, I looked across and there it was, this splendid little copse.
That’s nature, though, isn’t it? … You think you can name it, tame it, shape it and order it, especially if you read enough, pay enough.
But sometimes you just have to step back, let it at it, and see what turns up.
One man’s weed is another man’s unexpected delight.
Like that corn marigold.
I love our garden, as one might gather from all the references and imagery I draw from it.
Now I hope you don’t think I just let any old weed come through and spoil this living sanctum …
Diarmuid Gavin I ain’t, but I do diligently weed and claw away the scraggy grass, and battle with those unruly intruders that would soon turn all this into the morning after Glastonbury.
But one of the greatest joys each year is to just to see what what shows up, grows up here.
Things grow, things wither and die, yet everything seems to remain the same, and then one day all has changed, utterly.
And your garden grows on regardless.
Blooming marvellous, isn’t it?
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