Day Dream Believer

Gardening in a pretty dress is not all it’s cracked up to be. Over the weekend I was out pottering in the garden. It was a gorgeous day. The sun was beating down. Little Paddler kept flinging her sun hat off. The guard dog was busy hunting wasps. It was the kind of weather you associate with the kids going back to school. I had thrown on a skirt and t-shirt and was wearing a pair of flip flops. Perfect attire for a bit of re-potting plants, sowing seeds, water a few tomatoes. Mr. Fairweather was building me a clothes line. The luxury of an outdoor clothes line is not to be underestimated. I have had too long of drying everything on an indoor clothes horse and whatever chair back is available. I digress. Little Paddler was hanging out with her daddy and the guard dog so I headed off to the compost heap with my kitchen bucket. Mr. Fairweather had recently strimmed a path past the currant bushes over to the compost. A few nettles had been sprouting up alright but in the last few days they seemed to have taken over again. I picked my way carefully so as not to get stung. Success! Getting back was another story altogether. I slipped and fell. Into the nettles. As if it weren’t bad enough, I skidded and slid in the process. My body was on fire. It was like fire ants had got in under my skin. I tore every dock leaf I could find to rub on the stings. Nothing seemed to help. By the next day the stinging had gone and it was a vague skin crawling feeling.
Sweet Peas for Summer coverI bet this kind of thing doesn’t happen to Laetitia Maklouf. She appears in the pages of her book Sweet Peas for Summer adorned in beautiful dresses and skirts and fabulous wellies with perfect nail polish and beautiful hair. Actually scrap that – I lie. Sweet Peas for Summer is not a book. It is a work of Art and all of the images used don’t just appear, they adorn. I love this book. It set me off dreaming and planning long before we had this patch. I could get lost day dreaming in general. Making grand plans in my head without possibly having thought through the steps and processes involved. I used to head off to a garden centre – it’s an addiction and I’m okay with that. I used to head off to a garden centre and impulse buy plants without having a clue about where I was putting them, how to look after them or what to plant them with. Mr. Fairweather would roll his eyeballs and hedge a guess at how long before this one died. Or else I’d plant it out and then find six months down the line it was in the wrong spot altogether and needed digging up.
Sweet Peas for Summer leafSweet Peas for Summer is Laetitia’s journey through her first year of making a garden from scratch. Despite its coffee table look, it is packed with great information about getting a garden up and running. From the basics of planning things out on paper to what tools are essential and what gardening terms even mean. She then goes through the year season by season and month by month detailing what to do when. I like that she also breaks it down in to what she did in her garden followed by a general look at what should be done in a garden at that time. I’m interested (nosy) as to what other people do in their gardens but it’s not necessarily what I might do. She lists off plants and flowers for planting or those that might be looking their best at a particular time which is great. I would head off to google the names of plants I had never heard of and then find that I couldn’t imagine my garden without them. Others I would take or leave.
Each month also has a few projects to do that might keep you occupied while you waited for the garden to fill in. Again, some I could take or leave. The idea of a cut flower bed I love love love. Sugared fruit for the table doesn’t excite me at all. Either way, I loved reading about them. Dreaming about them in my garden.
sweetpeasShe doesn’t talk about fruit or vegetables in this and that’s fine. I have lots of other books that cover those topics. Too many some might say – but can you ever have too many books? This is about a pretty garden and every garden should at least have a pretty spot. This book gets me excited about planning my pretty spots. And on days when the list of work to be done looks too long, this book helps me fall in love again.
I will however say that gardening should be done in trousers. Certainly where nettles are involved.


4 thoughts on “Day Dream Believer

  1. Great review. I love how you make the connection between the book and your life so clear, and how you explain why the book is so useful/important/meaningful to you. And I hope you’re feeling much better after your tumble!

    Liked by 2 people

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