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May 2023

“All things seem possible in May.” — Edwin Way Teale The garden is alive and well, with green and pink, purples and yellows bursting out of every border. Though spring started some weeks back now, May is the true heart of spring. We can finally plant out summer bedding flowers, though if you do live in a colder part of the UK (Scotland for example) best wait till June. As bizarre as it may sound, in the flower garden now is the time to plan for September blooms. Hunt around in garden centres for flowers that will be only just emerging in September so that when the rest of the gardens starts to fade, YOUR garden will continue to shine. The garden will now be a sea of pink- the peony for one will be at her very best this time of year with plump flowers that spark joy in anyone’s hearts. The blossom of the apple tree will be falling gently and the garden becomes the heart of the home. The weather (if kind) will be warm and welcoming and it will at last be time to ditch the jumper and enjoy the rays. Apart from gardening I have taken up a new hobby. Throughout the winter months I take to my kitchen and enjoy cooking over the warm stove, but for now I need something new, I’m tired of cooking hearty meals. So I have turned my hand to painting. I was brought up painting, it sounds daft to some but on holidays my parents would take my sister and me to many BEAUTIFUL places. The south of France, Italy, Isle of Wight and so on. We would go to Monet's garden and home, see the cave paintings in the Dordogne and visit cathedrals and ruins. And while I would be in awe of the beauty around me now, it fell flat at times on a nine year old brain. But my mother, who always had a trick up her sleeve, kept us entertained with a sketch pad and a set of watercolours each. “See that waterfall? Try drawing it” she would say. Or while sitting waiting for dinner in a restaurant garden she would point out a castle on a nearby hill and tell us to try sketching it. It worked.. It really did. But what is more it taught me to look, to see, to really see. It brought out a world of depth, of colour and shadow. “No shadow is made with just black, try a dark blue” and my mind was blown away! So I decided to pick up the brush again, but this time, for the garden. It is a great way to capture what is truly there. To better understand depth and foreground. It also helps to see your garden in a new light, should that plant really be there?

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