Tiptoe Through The Tulips…..(and the Bluebells!)

Posted on 11th May, 2011

I think I’m obsessed !!

(if anyone out there is actually reading this…and they know me...can’t imagine why anyone else would be reading ...they will be nodding in agreement)…but obsessed about what…in my case the WEATHER. It seems to feature highly as a topic in this blog and its time to acknowledge that I am afflicted with the great British disease. In my defence the job requires us to spend a lot of time outside and the weather affect us and what we do – so it pays to keep an eye on the forecast.

Anyway – I am not writing abut the weather except to note that it has given us the MOST AMAZING SPRING – with an assault on the senses and a kaleidoscope of colours not normally seen from plants all in flower at the same time. Tulips in particular seem to have created an especially riotous display – with early, mid and late tulips exploding together in some gardens. I was particularly taken by Louise’s front garden planted with Tuilp Ballerina & Queen of Night which looked so beautiful with the mulit-stem of the Prunus serrula and the fresh spring green of Euphorbia.

Thinking about tulips had me wondering about the song…..so with the wonders of Google I discovered that ‘Tiptoe Through the Tulips’ was a chart hit for Tiny Tim in 1926 (amazing to discover the charts existed back then). Google also led me to discover that another version of the song was recorded –  ‘Tiptoe through the Bluebells’!! (that other wonderful spring plant).

My own recent Bluebell experience was to see them growing on the side of a steep rocky hillside on an island off the West coast of Scotland facing the full force of the Atlantic gales – the very opposite of the normal dappled shaded woodland I am so used to finding them. The debate rages about the introduced Spanish variety, but despite this, in my view you can’t helped but be moved by the sight of a big swathe of blue in the spring sunshine.

Returning to London – I recently walked past Eccleston Square in Pimlico – well known for its sumptuous Garden. My breath was really taken away by the range of plants in flower as it looked as if spring and summer had collided together – I was left wondering 2 things – first what will happen in summer proper – here in town the stalwarts of our English summer gardens are already in full bloom, roses in particular are looking good -and secondly,  I wondered how exhibitors at this year’s Chelsea Flower Show are coping with the conditions. With the show just round the corner it will be really interested to see what part the weather has played on the exhibits – watch this space!

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