Surprises

imageWe have quite a large strawberry bed in our garden. It has been there for around 16 years now and every year we talk about how we should replace some of the plants……next year. And every year…..yes you’ve got it….we forget.

This year is no different and the plants that are there are still the old ones.

The difference this year is that every other year we have carefully dug around the strawberry plants in the spring, removing any grass, stinging nettles, buttercups and anything else that might stop them growing big and strong. This year we were away and so did nothing but leave them to their own devices.

Today we had some time and decided the strawberry bed was our priority if we were to get any fruit this year and so set to. At first it was hard to even see where the plants were but as we dug and pulled we quickly began to uncover nice healthy, strong plants. The grasses had grown long as had other plants whose name I don’t even know but in doing so they had protected the plants.

As we uncovered more and more we realised that not only were there flowers on the strawberry plants but green strawberries and even a whole container, ok a small one but still, of ripe juicy strawberries.

I have a very loose attitude to gardening anyway. If it flowers it stays. If we plant something and a stronger plant takes over the space so be it. We don’t have straight lines nor neat and tidy flower beds but wild fuchsia hedging, ash trees and hawthorn. My herb beds and paths have been taken over by evening primrose and wild garlic and our ‘patio’ area by foxgloves and aqualigia.

So what a lovely surprise to discover not only fresh strawberries hidden under grass but a new relaxed gardening strategy for the strawberry bed. Next year I will just be leaving them to fend for themselves. They certainly seemed to like it.

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