Sun strikes cobweb strands to shine like silk. Beautiful in their intricacy, I leave them where they are, ducking to avoid ruining them.
Dust sails on streams of light shining through the grimy window. Delighted, I watch the show for some moments.
Rich smell of earth and dried herb stems, compost and dead leaves, scent of rainwater freshly decanted from butt to pail, join to provide heady perfume.
Crumble of soil scattered across the old wooden table that serves as a potting bench. Scrunchy underfoot spillings and sweepings beneath my garden clogs.
Leaning towers of tiny pots, seemingly fidgeting in their eagerness to carry this year’s crop.
Gaudily illustrated packets of seed march alphabetically in an old sweet tin. Inside each little envelope scores of tiny miracles waiting, just waiting, sensing the time is right. Alyssum, antirrhynum, bellis, calendula, cleome, cosmos, dahlia, delphinium, larkspur, nasturtium, passion flower, poppy… these and many more, some tried and true, others experiments, little excitements to charm and delight through the summer.
I stand, sniff, savour. I am reminded of my father, my grandfather, uncles and maiden aunt Lily, married to her garden. In this moment of anticipation I am connected to growers everywhere, in shed, field, greenhouse, allotment, on balcony. A band of mucky fingered, season watching servants to nature’s annual wonder. My own stubby fingers itch to be active. I draw one last deep breath of the magic that is my potting shed, and begin.