Summer time ….

….. and despite the largely cool, cloudy and damp weather the garden is singing to me.

Hinomaki red gooseberries

We have eaten the offerings of the berry and currant bushes.


The tree fruits are ripening on their as yet slender boughs.

apple Sunset ripening


the first and so far the only, very lovely, mirabelle ripening


damson Abergwyngregyn bearing its first fruits and surrounded by marjoram, oca, tree onions and more


Jerusalem artichokes and mashua are rocketing skywards and oca is fast expanding outwards and upwards.

oca thriving in deep, fertile soil

When the sun comes out bees, butterflies and an assortment of other flying insects are attending closely to the thousands of blossoms on the cardoons, mint, catnip, marjoram, budleia and hyssop.

cardoon flower plus bee


Swiss mint (I think) – the flowers are super attractive to honey bees and another species I cannot identify yet. They flew away when I took out the camera.


red admiral and peacock butterflies were swarming around these alliums



skirret in flower


tree onions ripening beside marjoram, elder bush and fennel behind

The birds (blackbirds I think, but I wasn’t here to see) ate the aronia (chokeberry) berries.

aronia (chokeberry)


Californian poppy attracts a particular fly to its gorgeous flowers

In contrast to all this wildlife activity I am doing very little – nothing in fact – just enjoying it all.  By this time of year I am always let go completely.  The plants in the polycultures are growing together so closely that there is a general surge of growth and loveliness which I just want to spend time gazing at.

looking down the garden from fourth polyculture bed in front


second polyculture bed, currently dominated by nasturtium, alliums and fennel with berries and roots behind


first polyculture bed


‘triangle bed’

I want to look at the flowers …

views across two valleys to the hills beyond

… and the views.  After all, winter is only round the corner.

29th November 2016




About Anni Kelsey

I love forest gardens and forest gardening, nature, reading and everything good about being alive. I have written two books - the garden of equal delights (2020) - about the principles and practice of forest gardening; and Edible Perennial Gardening (2014) - about growing perennial vegetables in polycultures, which is basically forest gardening concentrating on the lower layers.
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6 Responses to Summer time ….

  1. mortaltree says:

    Very nice. That miribelle really looks delicious!


  2. Sara says:

    You have such a stunning garden Anni, it’s so inspiring. Thank you for the seeds you sent. The skirret was an unexpected surprise, thank you! I look forward to growing them in my garden x


    • Anni Kelsey says:

      Hi Sara, it was salsify – not skirret – and you are welcome. It is a root veg that also has edible stems in the spring before it flowers. They are nice. So you can eat some of the roots and leave some to grow into their second year – eat some of the stems, let some of them flower and save the seed for the next crop. They are very pretty flowers too. I meant to send an email about them, but forgot!


  3. Carole says:

    Beautiful, Anni, really lovely. Enjoy!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Helen says:

    I’m glad to have seen what oca and skirret plants look like. Good to see a garden which looks generally like mine (polycultures)!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Bill Wright says:

    Fab pics., Anni . Thanks

    Liked by 1 person

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