Ian is a Gardens Manager living in Crowhurst, working as part of a team in three large country gardens in the Sussex and Kent Weald, where he is passionate about natural gardening.
The beginning of August is noted for the ancient Celtic festival of ‘Lammas’ or ‘Lughnasadh’. It is a celebration of the harvest time & the subsequent baking of bread from the first wheat brought in from the fields and the making of traditional corn dollies.
Seed was kept from the ripened wheat & stored to sow again the following year. As we look around this time of the year, we see fruit all about forming and starting to mature. Rowan berries are starting to colour, children on their summer break are exploring the hedgerows with accompanying parents looking for ripened blackberries.
In our gardens too, whenever possible we patrol with brown paper bags, tying them to desirable seed heads to collect the seed to sow next year. It really is an abundant time, one of my favourite times of the gardening year.
It doesn’t seem long ago that the first migrant birds were returning and prospecting nest sites. Just last week I observed the first migratory flocks of swifts heading back south and this morning the swallows in the village were starting to gather in lines along the telephone wires.
I encourage you to embrace this time in August and celebrate in the joys of our magical countryside!