Monday, May 21, 2012
sparrow nasturtium herb Robert
This sparrow and I played hide and seek for a while before I managed to snap it.
In recent years I have bought dark red nasturtium plants from The Farmers' Market . The orange ones which climb all over the place, seed themselves in the vegetable garden every year. This year a packet of seed sown in the green house produces all the dark red plants I need and more. They are of compact habit and intended for pots. Today I transplant a few of them to see if they will withstand the still cold weather. If they succumb there are more in reserve.
Lucy wrote the other day of herb Robert, a charming and very common wild flower, a member of the geranium family. It has popped up in the garden this year nestling under the well established and almost indestructible fuchsia (the wild, small flowered variety which grows on the coasts of Cornwall, Wales and Ireland). Though technically growing as a weed, I think I shall look after my herb Robert for a while. Interesting to note it is growing out of a pavement crack down the road, but because it is in full sun, the red flowers have blanched to a pale pink, and it looks none too happy. It is better off in woodland shade. Geoffrey Grigson, in his The Englishman's Flora, quotes the herbalist Gerard: "'Herbe Robert groweth upon old wals, as well as those made of bricke and stone, as those of mudde and earth: it groweth likewise among rubbish... '". Grigson says of it that : "it lives with man much as the robin flips into his garden and to his back door."