28 February 2012

Thinking of Future Visitors

I do like doing a good bit of research; cross-referencing is a kind of heaven for me. I've been thinking lately about how I would like the garden to develop. Japanese style order does hold a lot of appeal. I love the severely rectangular pond with its backing of airy bamboo that my mum and dad helped me make for my 40th birthday (what? you thought this blog was written by a young'un? No, middle-age and gardening are inseparable. But it may be time to accept I'm situated in dull and wet Manchester, 'The Sponge of Mordor', as I like to mumble under my breath. Hence, the logic goes, wouldn't it be easier and more naturalistic to plant plants that are native to this area, and therefore encourage vigorous growth and attract the local bees and butterflies that are apparently so in need of food?

The Natural History Museum holds a fantastic database of the plants local to your area: 'The Postcode Plants Database. Cross-referencing this list with one of the 100 best butterfly nectar plants from Butterfly Conservation, together with a report of butterfly sightings by the Cheshire and Peak District branch of Butterfly Conservation provided hours of endless fun. My desk is covered with spreadsheets and tables and scribbled notes.

You don't have to be in the garden to derive pleasure from it. But if I do work in it and plant the right plants perhaps The Gatekeeper would honour me with a visit.

Image from Butterfly Conservation