Grown in Wales

Grown in WalesGrown in WalesGrown in Wales



This season

Charles Warner

The morning is appearing at my window. It's a morning to be reckoned with. It hasn't slipped from night into dawn. The sunlight has blasted into the kitchen window and cast great oblongs of light onto the slate floor. It is April but this is a winter light. Hard and brittle as stars and dry as a scythe. This would be great if it were January. We could make bread, stoke up the fire and think about the season ahead but in April......

We have to put plants onto garden centre benches. It's April and that is what we do in April. So I drive around but the garden centres look like desolate places and although some of them have customers they are not buying plants. The ornamental plants that we have are ready to flower but are stunted by the cold wind that seems to tear the colour out of everything. There's a level of despair in the trade. Even the best orginised places are holding back on stock worried that it will sit outside only to be ruined by temperatures well into minus figures overnight. Coming as it does on the back of one of the worst years for the horticulture industry there is a palpable feeling of stress in the air.

It will pass. Quickly I suspect. The part of the public that like to garden are just itching to start. In a week or two weeks the jet stream will give us a break and the air will come from the atlantic again instead of the arctic. There will be an almighty rush of customers into the garden centres. It's all a matter of being ready for it. We have our plants on all our centres now and we have a nursery that is crammed to bursting point. Each day we wait for the sun to thaw out the tunnels and we make a tiny bit of space somewhere and pot a few more plants. The newly potted plants grow only slowly in this weather but they do grow and that's something to be positive about


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