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A blaze of colour throughout the summer...

July Diary

It comes around every year and each year I try to tell myself to let it go. I do for a while but then it gets too much. I am talking about roadside grass cutting. I can fully understand the need to cut sight lines, turn offs and sign board areas but why oh why do the authorities feel the need to lay waste vast areas of roadside verges and banks by cutting them in areas where sightlines could never be a problem. Don’t tell me it looks tidier because it doesn’t and within two or three weeks or so it’s all grown up and needs cutting again. It’s the most spectacular waste of money and does nothing for our wild flowers and rough areas (where bees, butterflies and other insects and animals live). There might, just, be a chink of hope however. This year in our area the steeper banks have been left uncut and in many areas they have just cut one width down the roadside. Could this be new, sympathetic thinking or just that they haven’t got around to cutting the rest. Time will tell. Take a walk into some rough grass sometime. Look at all the different flowers and grasses. If you are lucky you might see an orchid. On a sunny day you will certainly see and hear  butterflies and bees. Now tell me that it’s better strimmed down or cut with a flail mower on a tractor....I think not.


After a lovely spell of hot, dry weather in early June we have had a few weeks of wet and coolish weather. The plants....and grass... that had been slow to grow suddenly took off and lush greenery is everywhere. The roses are flowering spectacularly, delphiniums have gone from a foot to eight in a matter of days, it seems, and everywhere looks so healthy. The downside is that grass, also, loves these sorts of conditions and no sooner have we mowed one area than it needs done again. Usually this early spurt slows down fairly quickly but not so this year, on it grows and on we mow but eventually nature will slow things down and the mowers can relax a little, just a little.


And back to the roadside grass cutters. I hope none of them come to visit the herb and kitchen garden because we have decided to take a rest in the vegetable plot this season and plant it out with wild flowers. To some it might it needs a good others (like me) it is just so lovely. Wild red poppies, purple cornflower and oxeye daisy are first up and many more to follow. If you have time go and have a look....I defy you not to say “WOW”.