The sun has been shining more times than the rain has been falling for three whole weeks now - amazing after the winter we have just had. I know on the other side of the country floods still remain and it will be weeks if not months before they can smile again. Notwithstanding this old lady who hates the winter with a passion is feeling hopeful that spring is here.
When I was a child, spring was my favorite season - a time when the bitter cold of hated winter began to vanish. When water pipes no longer froze, when chilblains and raw, cold chapped,legs began to heal. When windows no longer froze from the inside out. Yes spring brought promise of sunshine, lighter carefree clothes and heat.
Spring is still a welcome sight at the end of a long life but for so many decades now, since I have become interested in the natural world, autumn has taken first place. Is it because, as I grow older, I wish to associate my feelings with the beginning rather than the middle of life? I don’t think so, after all I began to change opinion, as to which was the best season, before it even entered my head I was going to one day be an old lady!
Autumn of course has many charms, the colours, the fresh sharpness of the air. However, spring also has freshness and colour. No, what I enjoy about autumn is the promise of things to come. It is like being right there at the beginning of life.
Death comes in the summer sunshine, the seeds, nuts, berries fall to the ground,their sole purpose to produce new life, they wriggle their way down into the blackness of the soil. There they lie and the rest of world mistakenly calls their time a dead time.
Nature though is not all about show and display. Deep down in the darkness, tiny roots begin to grow, life has begun. Throughout this particular season, life is pulsating down in the depths, safe from predation, safe from the ravages of weather. Growing, gathering strength, stores and security.
While I gather the fallen leaves, tidy the paths. I can imagine an army of plants mustering beneath my feet, unconcerned with me. When I decide to leave the seeds on the weeds or the cultivated plants, it is not just to feed the birds through the winter or to provide cover and food for the hidden wildlife, it is my contribution to the migration of life. My nod to fellow travelers.
I am a fair weather gardener as those of you who have read this blog before, I need sunshine to tempt me out, I am being tempted out, day after day, at the moment and spend as much time exploring as I do working:)
Now spring,the second favorite,is arriving and as I wander the garden I get to view that hidden army. Tiny, bold and determined flower buds and green, oh the delicious green of new shoots. Blossom bedecks bare branches and makes the pulse beat a little stronger.