Without a doubt it’s a baptism of fire, albeit in a gentle green sort of way, when you plant your first round of plants …


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Bought from a beautiful Highland plant nursery and a few weeks later they’ve been munched by the neighbouring sheep that are still managing to negotiate their way into the garden by way of old fencing that needs re-doing and the occasional left open gate, not me I promise.

Or is it the roaming deer at night or perhaps the gorgeously large hare who makes the twice daily trip through your garden, only ever munching grass while you’re watching… slowly we are learning!

And then of course, how to grow from seed; the ins and out of germination – what temperature is actually needed? (no greenhouse yet!) – and the dawning (why so slow, lol!) realisation everything needs to be in-doors until it’s properly warm enough, and up here in the central Highlands, we’re talking really the end of May. One more spring frost to come they say…

But it’s an exciting journey, reading about the synergy of permaculture and the biodynamics of planting seeds at the full and new moon – optimising germination, which plants fare better as the moon waxes or wanes… It’s a learning curve I’m willing to stumble along blindly in the hope that something lovely will be blooming at its end and I’ll be a little the wiser!

Wearing Genevieve Sweeney cardigan, White Stuff skirt, Grenson Nanette boots

Fitting in another whole dimension to a life can feel overwhelming – where is the time! – but it’s like the other important things you want to do (exercise, focus on health & reading)  you just have to let it battle its way to the top, give it space to breathe and trust that if it is meant to it will become a new part of your life.

The mental rhythm of sorting soil through your hands is wonderful to submit to, even with it is all rocks, tough roots and strangly old string; it’s like slotting back into somewhere comforting and certain. It’s time-consuming and exhausting but draws you back in ever more fiercely the more you do.

Enough opining, we are only very much at the beginning of creating a garden, with only vague ideas of what we want to achieve and yet fully busy during weekends and spare afternoon moments (lighter so much later now and warmer too, which makes all the difference!) with the tasks we have lined up. Very much not an Insta-ready project at this point in time, and definitely a slow-burn but, I hope, a beautiful story along the way…

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