So now it is February and there have been some piercingly bright days slicing the grey and the gloom. The light is lasting for longer and although the nights have gone back to cold and some mornings to frosty, seed sowing now seems more justifiable. In the only very faintly heated greenhouse the cuttings and seedlings which seemed to have been holding their breath dormant for months are now gradually breaking into life: putting on fresh green growth and shoving white roots vigorously through the bottom of their pots. Increasingly difficult now to ignore the seedlings which are elbowing each other in their overcrowded trays.
First of all and starting in the shelter of the greenhouse, there is optimism in the survivors from last Autumn’s propagation workshop at Derry Watkins’ Special Plants.Yes, the pelargonium cuttings have been under attack from the tiny slugs sheltering out of sight under the lip of the pots, but they still seem robust enough.
Second are the the Jamaican Primrose cuttings, taken from Derry’s garden on a wet and windy Autumn afternoon, which are definitely outgrowing their pots. Just hope they can keep this up until some warmth creeps back.
Next are the Thalictrum seedlings which are unfurling their fresh greenness very prettily.
Number 4 (and last in a quick final look round the greenhouse highlights) are the unexpectedly healthy looking cuttings taken from Salvia nachtvlinder – perhaps the most loved out of my many loved (but often neglected) salvias.
Outside the door, entirely exposed to the worst of all the weather are some of the autumn planted cornflowers – blue, black or lacking a label. Probably should be potted on or out, but for now they are marooned there waiting.
And 6 can be the lovely fat buds growing on the clematis around the apple tree at the end of the garden which have survived the dog’s raids on the squirrels.
Not a day for being outside with its mean, bleak mizzle. Or even inside the cold greenhouse. Better to light a fire and catch up on everyone else’s Six on Saturday – thanks to The Propagator.