• The Chichester Gardener

Gardening in Lockdown. The Cool of the Day.


This lockdown business is hard and the cracks are beginning to show. There are moments of pure gold... the long lazy family lunches in the shade, the nature walks interspersed with our children paddling in brooks and streams where time seems to stand still in a good way and even, dare I say it, fleeting moments of child initiated learning. But the shorter tempers, frustration and apathy are showing which is unsurprising given the circumstances we all find ourselves in.


Waking early as I seem to do in the summer months, my Eden is a stroll around the garden with a mug of tea in 'the cool of the day'. The garden, even life in general, seems softer and gentler before the midday sun reigns over head and it's a chance to be still and take stock before the onslaught of paddling pools, home school, coming up with new ways to burn off the children's never ending energy and endless zoom chats.


The uncertainty we are faced with currently has the potential to overwhelm and chip away at our security, but nature has provided us with the great escape. No matter what goes on around us the plants and trees still carry on, birds sing like we've never heard before, the seedlings tenaciously push up towards the light, buds open and the bees go about their essential daily business. Here is the hope that life carries on regardless and all will be well again.


This is the privilege every gardener knows, the satisfaction of seeing seeds germinate, the sense of achievement gained from a rescued bargain plant nursed back to life and a planting scheme finally coming together. But gardening is full of failures as well, the seeds that never sprouted, the plant that withered no matter the level of intensive care you gave it and the despair that rabbits and slugs leave in their wake. But that's ok, because we try again in the hope that next time will be different, even better, just like in the real world.