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No Horticultural Pain. No Aesthetic Gain!

Today witnessed only the third drive of my car since lockdown. This to collect, at compliant social distancing, an afternoon tea gift for my mum in gratitude for letting me reside in her home on a pepper-corn rent.

My benevolence bolstered further by her tolerating my capricious moods and, more importantly, mater desisting from her erstwhile habit of interrupting me when I’m endeavouring to write.

My tenancy agreement with the matriarch including paying for half the monthly food shop, along with promising never asking her to read my blogs. Words she opines are fed to me by beelzebub himself; diablo utilising me as a conduit to bring shame on the Strachan family with tales of the absurd and “appearance of scruff bag beard!”

As an aside, my back lawn looks an absolute eyesore at the moment. The weeder/feeder I spread, and watered, on Wednesday already turning the moss within the grass black. Subsequently, the area now bears the unappealing aesthetics once bequeathed by a wintertide 1970’s football pitch.

Soccer - Football League Division One - Derby County v Arsenal - Baseball Ground

Archie Gemmill, Derby County – Baseball Ground 1970’s

I pen this section after spending this afternoon raking out moss and rehydrating this formerly emerald coloured patch, which now resemblances Derby County’s grass blade bereft Baseball Ground of November 1973.

The lawn a horticulture holocaust, but this cosmetic backward step sadly unavoidable as part of my strategy to rid it of weeds and moss…… As poet/writer Rudyard Kipling once advocated. “Gardens are not made by singing ‘Oh, how beautiful!’ and sitting in the shade.

No garden pain, no aesthetic gain!…… As, I suspect, nobody has ever said!

With six digitalis in a nearby garden border about to reach florescence, hopefully their chromatic bounty will provide a degree of visual recompense for the lawn’s prevailing disfigurement.

As I’ve written before they say beauty is in the eye of the beholder…… Personally, I think beauty is in the eye of Noddy Holder. And after speaking with the Slade frontman, I concur with his thoughts that my lawn looks “A right f***ing mess!”

In adage, they also say you should never judge a book by its cover. However, I’m not disrespecting a literary tome here; instead the target of my polemic an area of grass which looks as though, instead of a lawnmower, I undertook it’s last cut with napalm!

As alluded to above, though, I’m not fazed by this temporary horticultural unseemliness. Grass blades have the capacity to regenerate in a way a moderately mild drinkers liver may recover if they snub the demon booze…… Consequently, I’ve checked my lawn into the Betty Ford Clinic for a two month detox.

Of all quotes I’ve witnessed about the joys of horticulture, the following from TV garden show presenter Monty Don is amongst the most profound I’ve encountered:-

“Modern life is, for most of us, a kind of serfdom to mortgage, job and the constant assault to consume. Although we have more time and money than ever before, most of us have little sense of control over our own lives. It is all connected to the apathy that means fewer and fewer people vote. Politicians don’t listen to us anyway. Big business has all the power; religious extremism all the fear. But in the garden or allotment we are king or queen. It is our piece of outdoors that lays a real stake to the planet.” 

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