We are in the middle of spring. How lovely our garden looks at this time of year with so much new greenery, blossom, flowers and happy birds zipping around. Between the globular box plants in their pots, a little path leads up the garden towards our vegetable patch, the compost bins and the green back lane beyond.
When we moved into this house in 1989, the garden was a jungle. I had to set about it with a powerful garden strimmer before applying weed killer to some areas. It was like taming a wild beast.
How many hours have I spent here - cutting the grass, trimming the hedges, laying paths, planting and picking. It has been a joyous adjunct to my life. Our children played here when they were little. We have had barbecues and bonfires and parties. Here I have seen foxes, hedgehogs, a badger, squirrels, dogs, cats, frogs, toads, snails, slugs, butterflies, a swarm of bees, wasps, spiders, mice, rats, sparrows, jays, rooks, blackbirds, magpies, seagulls, wood pigeons, doves, bluetits, coaltits, great tits, long tailed tits, thrushes, starlings, goldfinches, wrens and a sparrow hawk.
Having a garden is therapeutic. It helps to get the rest of life in better perspective. Soil on your hands and sweat on your brow. Building snowmen. Watching the seasons passing. Watching plants grow. It's like a big outdoor room - a natural extension to our house and after all this time I must say that I would hate to live anywhere that did not have a garden. I feel that my life would be somehow impoverished.