Poppylicious

The poppies have been magnificent this year.
Each flower starts off tucked away as a tiny bud.
They grow into plump, hairy nodding buds.
The stem starts to straighten, sending the bud skywards.
Nearly there.
The bud case turns turns brown and starts to split…
revealing the delicate, papery bright-red petals. They remind me of crumpled silk or crushed tissue paper.
They nod about for a couple of days, bringing joy to bees and gardeners.
Before discarding their petals on the ground and…
revealing their perfectly designed seed heads.

Hello. How’s it going with you? It’s been all about getting garden safari-ready here, which is very boring to everyone who isn’t interested in the garden, especially our teenagers. I was going to pull out these poppies – they’ve passed their peak but they’re still flowering so I’ve left the clumps where they are for now and noticed that they had flowers at each stage of development, so I thought I’d record it here. I find the whole process of seed to plant to flower to seed fascinating.

We had a massive push outside this weekend. My mother-in-law came to help and, as usual, galvanised us to do more than we’d planned, so it is looking great even if I’m not (exhausted, grubby, terrible hay fever-face at the end of each day). I’ll take some photos towards the end of the week so you can see – of the garden, not me, obvs!

The weather has been amazing but I’ve had such revolting hay fever which doesn’t combine well with sticking my head into ornamental grasses to remove bindweed. Nothing seems to be helping, so I just keep splashing water on my face and carrying on. What with all the gardening, having a nose like a tap and having everyone at home and all that entails, I am exhausted and looking forward to having an excuse to sit in the garden and do nothing other than chat to any visitors who wander in. In the meantime, I’m off outside with my pockets full of tissues.

Have a good week.

9 thoughts on “Poppylicious

  1. Oh Sam, sometimes I wonder why we bother to garden, but as an enamel mug, given to me by my daughter, proclaims: “I garden, therefore I am”. I cannot begin to describe my travails. I too am filthy and exhausted but I am off for a swim now to cool down. Thankfully no hay fever, but I sympathise. Could you take a daily antihistamine to keep the worst of the effects at bay? Lovely poppies btw. Fortunately the ones I have left are well above rabbit nibbling height. I think I may have spotted evidence of fox this morning … He/she was a lean keen killing machine last summer – fingers crossed. I took delivery of 100m of chicken wire yesterday as I the situation in the kitchen garden is ridiculous. Do make the most of the summer with all the children around. A few more years and they’ll all be gone. Have a good week and good luck with the garden safari. Sarah x

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    1. Lovely to hear from you, Sarah. I do take antihistamines but it’s been a corker this year. I’ll survive 🙂 Hope you manage to outfox the fox. Good advice about the children (I do try to enjoy having them around!). Enjoy the summer x

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  2. Sounds like a fun time to me! The common day to day annoyances like hay fever, seem so exhausting and unbearable at times. Ten days ago, out in the garden, sweating and digging holes, I came to an abrupt halt with unbearable pain, that ended up being a ruptured appendix. Plants that were dug up are still laying on their sides, and holes are still empty. And I would gladly embrace all my daily pains and backaches to be out there again. I’ve learned that a major setback puts everything into perspective. That life is annoyances like hay fever and back aches, and those kind of aches and pains are far better than not being able to move at all. If I could bring a box of tissues, I would gladly join you in the dirt, digging and sweating. Do take time at the end of your day or breaks in-between, to enjoy the fruit of your labor and cherish the joy of gardening.

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    1. Oh my goodness, Cindy! I’m so sorry to hear this. I hope you’re back to full strength very soon and back out into the garden. Take good care of yourself x

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  3. I love poppies at all their stages, so really enjoyed your photo journey with them! Sorry to hear about the hay fever. Looking forward to seeing your garden all dressed up for the safari. Enjoy it.

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  4. From the look of all those pods, they have been very busy. I do not grow poppies just because they are not as happy here as in other regions. I happened to feature the Matilija poppy on Tuesday, but it is not really the same thing; and it grows like a weed! Our native California poppies grow wild, although they are not as common as they used to be before getting so crowded by exotics. They don’t play well with others.

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