Jane has been kind enough to write up a ‘diary style’ report in the absence of any activity at the Club.

A wet Sunday in October lends itself to sitting in front of the fire, browsing seed catalogues and compiling a shopping list in preparation for next year’s planting.  However, seed catalogues are becoming a thing of the past as everything moves online.  So, instead, I find myself spending hours sat at my computer, clicking in and out of screens and endlessly scrolling up and down to find the information I need.  Call me old fashioned, but this does not feel like progress.  One page of a paper catalogue can encapsulate details of 20 different types of cabbage seed so, at a glance, I can glean all the information I need and readily compare prices.  An enjoyable (if you like that kind of thing), efficient and relaxing exercise.  Whereas, it now takes me far longer to gather the same information online and by the end of the afternoon I am frustrated, fatigued and fractious.  At least I am unfazed by using a computer but not everyone is so comfortable using this medium and there are some members of the Gardening Club who do not have a computer of their own at all.

I suppose I could venture out to the garden centres and look through their seed selections but, by buying through the Gardening Club, members get 50% discount on seeds and 20% discount on seed potatoes and onion sets.  It is well worth the £12.50 annual membership fee even when, due to the pandemic, we can’t benefit from the usual club outings and talks.  So back to my computer I go, to continue my perusal of online seed catalogues.

The garden is certainly beginning to fade into winter now, but there is still a surprising amount of colour to be found and many plants that flower at this time of year seem to last longer in the cooler temperatures.   The row of nerines is a dazzling display of dayglow pink, rudbeckia give a splash of sunshine yellow under the twisted willow and a clump of crocosmia is sending out sprays of deep salmon pink behind the pond.  Not to mention the delightful cyclamen that quietly appear at this time of year to brighten up shady corners. 

However, as we head into winter, there is much less to report on the gardening front, so this is to be my last gardening diary for the time being.  I started writing this diary at the beginning of April in lieu of the usual articles about Gardening Club talks and events that had been cancelled due to coronavirus.  Back in April, I had no idea that I would still be writing my diary in October.   Fingers crossed, Gardening Club meetings and some resemblance of normal life will be able to resume in 2021 and the regular club articles will return to these pages once more.

Jane Cross