Don’t tell the allotment but for five years now I have been besotted with another plot of land. This a sandy site, surrounded by trees on the Jutland coast.
It houses our ‘summerhouse’ a large-ish wooden hut 200 yards from a rugosa-strewn beach. There is no planting here, apart from trees and spring tulips (I can’t help myself) scattered though the long grass at the borders.
This is a slow-burn garden, if you will. Here we mostly plant trees – apple, plum, espalier pear, red and other pine, fir, silver and copper birch, blue cedar, larch (perhaps my favourite) and a hedge of beach.
The deepest appeal lies in knowing someone else will benefit, that I will not likely live to see the trees in their maturity, that I am husbanding a place where hare, deer, polecats can feel at home (and they do), red squirrels, woodpeckers and shy redwing too. Handing it on to others whose children will also run in the long grass, who will also mow the lawn, gaze in amazement at the wood anemone, hepatica, make pies from the apples, plums on the trees.
It is cold there now, often like Narnia under the snow queen, but we always walk whatever the weather (some of the best in driving freezing rain), visit the beach at sunset (the hares share this habit), light log fires and enjoy the hygge (a Danish word without adequate translation but meaning comfort, sharing, deep relaxation, feeling at home). As December comes and Advent, I wish it too for you.