ROOM WITH A VIEW: Musings from my window

The members of Mickleton Gardening Club who do not possess a computer, or who only use a computer for emergency and immediate-family contacts, and therefore unable to join in our monthly ‘Zoom’ gardening talks, would like to share their seasonal Spring ‘musings from my window’ with the wider gardening club ‘family’

(Illustrated by stock images or from Helen Jackson-Garside)

Glass Windows
Little Bird

‘Musings from Brenda Griffiths’ window’

‘I wandered lonely as a cloud ……..’  No doubt many of us are feeling this way, but a host of golden daffodils is around the corner for us. Blackbirds and redwing had a feast off the crab apples and cotoneaster, and the robin, wren and tits are enjoying the fat-balls. The heathers are colourful and the first snowdrops and primroses, a welcome sight.  Will leave the dead heads of the hydrangea for a while, as last year I cut them off and the late frost took its toll on the shrub.  We live and learn!  Lots of seed catalogues coming through the letterbox, with many new varieties to try.  Fun to look at and to think about for the Summer Show – hopefully!  Happy gardening to you all.

‘Musings from Mary Price’s window’

Bright morning, watery sun but ominous black clouds approaching …….  Blackbirds busy in the garden with cheeky robin in attendance.  Blue tits on the periphery.  Distant trees swaying gently in the breeze.  Jackdaws patrolling overhead, seeking scraps, and blue tits scampering among the shrubbery finishing off the last of the winter berries.


‘Musings from Mavis Ward’s window’

A bright, fresh morning after a glorious sunrise of mottled pinks, reds and splashes of blue. The garden is subtly springing to life, with primroses and snowdrops, although I suspect some bulbs were disturbed and ‘stolen’ in the autumn by the grey squirrel, a regular garden visitor.  Not so many blue tits yet, but the wren hopping under the shrubs is entertaining to watch. Have I just seen my first bumble bee? Has it over-wintered in my garden?


The magnolia and camellia are both budding up nicely.  Perhaps too nicely, if we have a frost.  I’ve just noticed two ‘clusters’ (known as a loveliness) of four or five ladybirds on two small branches of the magnolia. Hopefully they won’t become bird food for the blackbirds, once they’ve stripped the cotoneaster berries or want a change of diet!  My 90th Birthday present rose is shooting well, unlike its hebe neighbour that looks to be wilting and dying the longer I look at it.  Hopefully, my namesake ‘Mavis’ chrysanthemum won’t do likewise.


Oh no!  A large fluffy brown/black cat with a bushy tail is lying in the hydrangea pot, calmly sunning itself.  Shoo!!

‘Musings from Alan Hale’s garden’ and a poem

Thursday, 28th January 2021: Took advantage of a bright, sunny and not too cold a morning to venture out into the garden and do some long delayed clearance work from last year.I filled two bags with small dead branches and twigs from under the canopy of the beech tree, dislodged by the recent strong winds. I then moved on to cutting back some of my clematis collection until my back decided it had had enough.

I then had a walk round the garden to see what plants were in flower.  There was a large bunch of snowdrops, with more to come, and yellow winter aconites poking up amongst the, as yet, uncollected beech leaves. In another area, helleborus niger was in full flower.  A very reliable and attractive perennial with creamy white blooms which look good for many months. Finally, in front a coronilla valentina glauca, a small shrub with yellow flowers and blueish foliage was out. In fact it has flowers for most of the year. I would mention it is highly recommended by Bob Brown.

Finally to the greenhouse, where there is always something needing attention. I am in the final stages of a major re-potting exercise of my 100-plus semi-hardy plants.  Small pots are up-graded to 1litre pots, 1litre to two and twos to threes.  That is the end of the road, for I don’t have enough space for larger pots.  With the new compost, I put a pinch of fish, blood and bone organic feed to supplement the existing nutrients, as the plants will be in the greenhouse until April – May. My planting material is two scoops of Clover multipurpose compost mixed with one scoop of John Innes No. 3.

That was a good morning’s work and now it’s snowing!

Planting a Plant
Reading Outside

The following poem is taken from the latest newsletter of the Worcestershire group of the Hardy Plant Society.  It is written by that popular poet – “Unknown”

Outside at Dawn

Best time to marvel at your flowers

before the onward coming hours

the perfect time to be alone

without the stress of mobile phone

the time to plan what you will do

with no one interrupting you.

A quiet time to come on down

and wander in your dressing gown.

A peaceful time to stroll out there

or take the nearest garden chair

and think about your space a bit

and wonder what might add to it.

Just pottering around the lawn

can often make one feel reborn.

There’s so much stress around today

but out there it can float away

and once you’re through the garden door

Some things don’t matter any more

or far less than they did before.

I think that’s what a garden’s for.