Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Compulsive Gardening Disorder and Giant Chickens. And, model dogs.

It's been a while you might think. Me too. I have Compulsive Gardening Disorder. At this time of year, I blame the snowdrops. Galanthus, they look all innocent and pure face, believe me they are not. Someone told me once winter was a quiet time in the garden. I think not. In the garden who took me in last year, all of the snowdrops have held me hostage for as long as I can currently remember. You know the poem 'Remember remember the last time you saw a snowdrop....' or something like that. Well the last time I dug, sorted, counted and wrapped up a snowdrop (or a mere 100 of them to be precise) was today. I'm exhausted. And, of course, don't tell, rather muddy. No one has a tan this good from January through to April. Its mud I tell you. Very unseasonal I know. And whilst this beauty is called 'Grumpy' I'm remarkably not grumpy at all after my second snowdrop season, this year as 'snowdrop overlord in training'.  Its not as glamorous as I make it sound. Snowdrops are little devils. All cute and wanting to be planted like penguins at the pole. In huddles of hundreds.

I'm hoping we've sent the final 'snowdrops in the green' parcel out to its new home. Seriously I really hope its the last of it, for a few months anyway.  Delicately digging, sorting, mossing, wrapping, parcel taping and posting 150,000 snowdrops is a tad exhausting. And that's just the ones who left the estate. For every snowdrop sent, several more are replanted in the garden, its a very sustainable, if crazy venture. Next dispatch is in the autumn. Yikes.

Buying snowdrops, it seems, is a very compulsive pass time for some folks. And, although I hate to admit it, they are bonnie, even the special ones. (....who are a nuisance to pack, diva's I tell you, divas.)
Photo courtesy of
You can, it seem, never have too much of a good thing. And, they say gardening is relaxing. What do 'they' know. Its been a blast. Although I'm really glad it's all over. Even the Leucojums (Snowflakes) are glad to see me gone.  I dug up far too many of their friends and swished them into the post this year. Bonnie though eh? Much better than real snowflakes which are cold and not as pretty.
Photo from wikipedia
After the snowdrop frenzy, I went on holiday. To rest you know. In the snow, I like to keep the snow theme going. Although not a snowdrop in sight. Bliss.
After that! I finally saw my own garden in daylight again. You know in real life. And its woken up. I'll post some photo's soon. Although it went to sleep again, in snow the day I took the garden sofa out. This does not bode well. Garden sofa's aren't a lot of fun in the snow. Especially on your birthday. Birthdays at the end of April, do not require snow.  Snow is for holidays.

Anyway, after that unordered snow, I went into it and was surprised at how its survived the winter. And, how some of it didn't. Life's funny like that some things died, right beside the same thing that also lived. Very odd. There are other odd things in my garden, its also full of gigantic chickens. Like really huge. When Greta bounds up I'm actually quite scared. Never say though, you know give a chicken an inch, and they're in the kitchen before you know it they're helping themselves to tea and cake. I keep a safe distance and the cake tin locked. She's almost bigger than me, I don't think I'd wrestle a cake off her any day of the week.
Greta the biggest chicken I've ever seen in my entire long life. She's potentially turning into a turkey. Do chickens do that?
 Who knew taking a hen out of a 'factory farm' encouraged it to grow like Godzilla. Me neither. They're looking good on life out there without me, whilst I was captive with snowdrops. Aren't they? In other shocking news.......
Photograph by Annie Baker, who's clearly a dog whisper, with a good hairbrush. Yes that IS my dog.
In my garden absence Haggis decided to take a full-time modelling career. I never knew he could actually stay still, never mind find a brush. I never even knew we owned one. He's also been posing all 'moody' in the garden, the minute I pick up a trowel he's all 'plant me, plant me' or at least take my photo, that dog has issues.
Haggis looking like a plant pot. Nae brain that mutt. 
He tells me he'll be on a biscuit tin shortly with his amazing good looks, although I think he meant, IN a biscuit tin.
Who sulks in plant pots?
 Peedie of course remains, as always, unimpressed by his nephews antics wondering where that biscuit in might be.
Peedie giving the Primulas a tasty look.
 So Haggis found a new friend.
Aunty Claire's third dog. I think its a chameleon.
So with the sweetpeas in and the cerinthe germinated, guess its time to get out there and get on with some work in my own garden. I've dropped full-time (and some) hours for a three day work in a different garden/two day arrangement with my own garden. The three day a week job saw me dismembering Hellebores all week. Well, give a girl a bread knife and a mallet.........Just don't tell anyone I took it, OK? Me and a big knife? We all knew how that was going to end.
Not well. Not for me and not for the Hellebores. Bonnie though eh?  The flowers not the finger. I have very ugly hands, ask my husband. He married me for my ugly hands. He did really. Not my cooking. What can I say, he likes ugly hands.
As for the butchered Hellebores, they're all lined out now in rows, the last time I looked there was more than 100 of the pesky little suckers. All standing like soldiers. I had to buy a few, seemed only right I lost my finger for them after all. Ugly or not, again the finger not the flower.

And, here was I moaning about how buying snowdrops was compulsive. I think I need a new rule. No more buying plants until they're all in the garden.

If you see someone with a head torch in their garden, they're probably in the same predicament as me. No matter the season, we're out being all muddy.

Compulsive Gardening Disorder.


  1. CGD, it suits you. I'm glad that you've resolved the work garden/life garden conundrum, it sounds a better balance. Snowflakes! I'd forgotten about snowflakes! And speaking of gardening, I bought some trees in 2014 (Spring Fayre, a very memorable day for me) and have just started to plant them. Must be something to do with sync'ing weather, time and motivation. Perhaps I should acquire a head torch.

    1. Dear Mr I&T a head torch is as essential as a trowel in my mind, floodlights acquired at the same Spring Fayre, probably a step too far for most folks. Its more deranged than hard core if I'm honest. Twas a memorable day for me too, I met a new amigo. Hope you and yours are well and yer trees, blossom. Every day I see a new bird in the garden I think of you guys. Thrushes are still making anvils, we've wrens, blackbirds, robins, blue tits, sparrows, gigantic hens and the odd greenfinch. Although its not odd we just rarely see them for very long. And, I grew teasel for them too, ungrateful bonnie wretches. Not quite hen harriers and alike but its grand.

  2. I honestly don't think you can call yourself a gardener until you have a head torch. If you live in the land of 24 hour daylight, then fair enough, you can be a headtorchless gardener, otherwise you're playing at gardening.
    What a romp through the first part of the year this was. I'm exhausted reading it. Thank goodness you had a holiday. Do you think you should have another?

    1. I've already had three this season all in the snow, I hate leaving the garden in the summer. Shh don't tell. Snowdrop hunting is exhausting. And, very odd to be so busy so early in the season. Romp it was. Thanks for popping over. Your patch looks wonderful!