“Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee”

I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,

And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made:
Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee,
And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;
There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
And evening full of the linnet’s wings.

I will arise and go now, for always night and day
I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
I hear it in the deep heart’s core.

WB Yeats


Sunday morning, 6.30am, before the sun hits the plot. Just me, the hedgebirds, the waking beans and the waddling ducks (one female and her two comical followers). We are away for a week soon and I need to weed. I have always admired the feral ability of the “bad herbs” – as the French call them – to quickly establish themselves (bittercress is everywhere on the plot today, growing, flowering and expressing seed in what can seem like moments).


I have “fruit” seed to sow and a wigwam to populate. But I am also here for the feeling it brings, Yeats’s “peace” (see above) perhaps. After a lifetime, though, of sowing seed I am still almost surprised by their ability to waken, unfurl, put down root and search for sun, their powerful need to reproduce.



I sow a row of Peace Seedlings True Gold corn to go with the tiny shoots showing from Howard, Nancy and Rose’s rills. I push in a Golden Nectar bean to the base of each pole on the wigwams and add transplanted seedlings from the nursery bed. We don’t know the new seed but we are long admirers of Alan “Mushroom” Kapuler’s work.


As the sun hits the site, I immerse myself in the special place, packed as it is with apple blossom and excited birds. The light catches a fairy flight of bird cherry fluff as it blows over the site, the blackbirds serenade from the tops of trees, the first wild calendula is flowering. Early summer is set. As I water in the early morning’s work, I soak in the Innisfree-form feeling.

Good gardening everyone.

Allan Jenkins

23 may 2013

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