I’ve bought several packets of flower seeds, most of which need to be sown in the next few weeks for flowering next spring and summer. Biennials mostly and a few perennials. Ever with an eye to Al’s business, I’m thinking that I can keep the few plants I need and he can sell the rest. He’s done well this spring from the foxgloves he grew last year, which have been coming into flower in the last few weeks.
Very hot again today, although again there is a fresh wind. I still would like to serve lunch out of doors on Tuesday, because our dining room, facing west as it does, is not at its best for a summer lunchtime – not unless it’s so hot outside that we’re grateful for its dim coolness. Usually we’re sun-starved and want to grab all we can, even at risk of pink ears and freckled nose. However, I suspect that we’ll shiver if I do. There will be twelve of us, and we can just fit around the dining table, but it’s a squeeze.
That’s still a slight niggle in the relationship between the Sage and me, actually. He wanted a refectory table, and found some lovely old oak planks, 8 foot long. We discussed the matter, and agreed that the table would be 8 feet long and 4 feet wide, so that it could comfortably seat 4 people at each side and 2 at each end. When the table was ready, it turned out to be 3 foot 6 wide. “I thought the proportions would be better,” he explained. I reminded him of what we’d agreed. It was obvious that he hadn’t actually been listening. He was quite unaware that there was a reason for the decision, so he saw no need to consult me on the change. As a result, family meals have often been quite awkward.
The legs of that table were made from an oak tree that fell down about 20 years ago. It had been in the middle of our orchard; now an ex-orchard. Nearly all the trees fell down in the ‘hurricane’ of 1987, knocking each other down like dominos. The oak tree, apparently strong, firm and in its prime, fell over a year or two later. Without its protective surround of apple trees, it couldn’t withstand the next strong wind.