I love this time of year when the garden is full of flower and often with second flushes on herbaceous perennials and roses and seeds are already setting for dispersal up and in to the garden to create a new generation. If you look around the base of your plants you will probably find the young seedlings already appearing from the seeds that have successfully landed and germinated. The garden soil is a veritable feast of old and new beginnings putting on their best before the autumn arrives and the floral show diminishes. Take heart, I shan’t mention the ‘a’ word again, at least not for a few more weeks and until then lets focus on what we do have in the garden.
So with paper bags, kitchen paper and a tiny pair of clippers in hand (bought at Wisley as a fun gardening tool) it’s off I go into the garden to plunder the setting seeds. I always intend to tie a ribbon or some string to my favourite colours of Linaria (Toadflax) and Aquilegia (Granny’s Bonnet) but invariably forget and rely on memory. Of course, your plants are more than capable of scattering their own seeds but I do love to get involved in this as an annual ritual and either drop seeds into places I would like to see them as this is a wonderful way to choreograph the planting compositions and change how colours interact with each other.
I have a couple of precious old biscuit tins full of envelopes with scraps of remaining seeds and I love adding to my treasure trove in this yearly ritual. Pencil in hand I take great pleasure in scribing onto the envelopes the details of the collection inside. I always put a date on this as it places me in the garden as it was and acts as a useful aide memoir. In time this provides a wonderful look back on what has been and what will be in the future.