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One of the disadvantages of gardening in a cold climate is that we have no flowers in our gardens at this time of the year.

Of course there are always flowers growing somewhere all year round, so we can always buy them even when we can't grow them. But while our own piece of earth lies fallow, we have to find distractions.

Some of us may feel it is good to have this seasonal break which provides time to contemplate and plan for next year. Others look for flower-related distractions.

We may sort through the photographs we have of our flowers, read or listen to music about flowers. I have been amusing myself by reading some playful poetry such as these lines by Reginald Arkell:

A garden is a lonesome thing -

When it starts blooming in the spring,

The daffodil, the snowdrop white, the dainty winter aconite...

And just as it is going strong, the woolly aphids come along.

Wire worms and Weevils think it fun, to eat your annuals one by one.

Until the caterpillars start to break your horticultural heart.

Go take a flat or buy a yacht, A garden is a lovesome thing- God wot!

This was published in My Garden: An Intimate Magazine for Garden Lovers in 1934 but still resonates today.

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