Savour the rewards when they come
THIS is the best of September mornings. A low yellow-tinged light seeps through the hedgerow from the east and illuminates the borders.
It pours through the apple tree and its reddening fruit, through the spiders webs which bridge stems and leaves.
It filters through the nicotiana sylvestris. The flowers look like pale silk gloves, unworn.
Echinacea's copper tops are shining, so too the glossy elderberries and their bright red stems.
NEW FROM SYMPLY - a wet dog food in a tray freshly steamed with real meat and veg you can see minimum of 68% meat content up to 72% in the adult trays.
Terms: Come and try tray at introductory price of £1
Contact: 01271 440626
Valid until: Friday, January 31 2014
Some lazy wasps linger. I have been told that when the nests are abandoned it is only the juveniles who remain, not knowing what to do with themselves.
They are the ones drunk on fermenting fruit, which sit in the grass or buzz around sugary tourists.
It seems quieter in the garden now. It is stilled.
There is no denying the decay which has started to gently unfold.
It is a gradual process in the same way you don't notice the changes in a friend you see everyday.
But while I write this, I can see so much plump green material has turned to brown and orange and red.
As the life force retreats just the physical remains and it is drying out.
Some has been skeletal for a while, like the allium heads or foxgloves which tower like spinal spires.
I like how they rattle in the wind and send showers of seed on to the soil.
This senescence is such a necessary part of the garden. Without it, how would the seed cases crumble to let the new life out?
And as the plants retreat indoors — like we do when the weather turns — they give us one last display of bursting colour. There is so much beauty in decay, if you allow yourself to see it.
And yet, in the vegetable garden and greenhouse, I am still coaxing the last of the fruit to fatten and ripen.
The tomatoes have been good this year though not in plentiful supply — I am blaming poor fruit set on the dry summer because despite efforts to dampen down in the mornings and spray water at night, the trusses have been surprisingly light.
The aubergines have failed to fruit and the chillies have yielded nothing.
But I will not give up on the fiery ones, instead bringing them to overwinter in the house for another go next year.
Even my comfrey, which usually runs riot here, has offered enough for only one bucket of foul tea.
Why do I dwell on failure when there have been so much success? The squashes and pumpkins have been brilliant so too the elephant garlic and shallots. The corn is fat and ripening well and the beetroot prizewinning.
I am already making a mental note of regime changes, but should really listen to instinct.
Trust is the answer. Trust that what wants to grow will grow and what doesn't, doesn't. Let it be and savour the rewards when they come.