We have returned from our Californian adventures and are settling back into life in rural East Anglia. A year and a half of absence and the garden is a wild thing.
The badgers have been busy scraping up any semblance of a lawn and the squirrels are on a mission to plant walnuts where I really don’t want walnut trees. Thistles taller than myself are attempting to colonise the meadow, along with the peevish, relentlessly suckering blackthorn. Branches have fallen from trees (as branches are want to do) and now lie willy nilly across borders and lawn.
It is tempting to buy every petrol fuelled machine known to man and set about taming the wilderness once and for all. But if this garden has taught me anything it’s that it’s rather nonsensical to work against nature. I try to remind myself of this when the tasks seem unending. I have made a vow to myself that if any element of my garden practice begins to make me feel as though I’m wading through treacle it will be quickly abandoned.
Of course, some days I look at my three acres of garden wilderness and all there is to do and my heart sinks. But other days I step outside into the twilight, watching the bats flit between the trees, listening to the geese migrating from their daytime grazing grounds to a favourite night time roost (honking as they pass the silhouettes of ancient trees emblazoned by a distant sun setting over the stubble cornfields) and I lean back and realise my garden is perfect just as it is. As it always has been.