Today I potted up 245 pots of English Bluebells – Hyacinthoides non-scripta.
I received 600 bulbs by courier on Wednesday. Tiny shoots of green showed that the bulbs are actively shooting towards Spring and their flowering. Only this year that they will find that they are not in a wood (these bulbs are, in fact, NOT from the wild but cultivated by a reputable wildflower supplier) but in pots in our Hackney garden. Even stranger, they will be spending 2 weeks as an installation in a Gallery as part of my upcoming exhibition Landscape of Change.
I had planned to pot up the bulbs yesterday, a miserable, drizzly day. Thankfully I ended up too busy and unable to fit it in. So this afternoon at 2pm I was out potting up in the back garden. And what an improvement – it actually could have been Spring today and the birds were sounding like it too. A busy robin kept me company for a time. It took 3 hours to complete the task, although I did get some help from my daughter when she arrived home from school. But at 4.5 yrs. her attention doesn’t last and I was left to the task on my own as the sun started to dip towards the horizon.
The repetitive nature of the job let my mind wander and think more about some of the aspects of the exhibition and it occurred to me – too late- that I should have contacted Hackney’s excellent green waste composting scheme to ask if they would have sponsored me with some of their compost – I’ve certainly contributed plenty of raw materials to the scheme over the years. As it is I spent £50 of my own hard-earned on some peat-free organic potting compost from a DIY chain.
If you check back here you can follow the progress of the bluebells and indeed the evolution of my work towards the show. I promise to elaborate more on the intentions of my show as I go, but for now I need to rest my aching back. Enough.