Yesterday I bought a fairly large black galvanised metal container from the garden centre: I had a very special purpose in mind for it. Today I half filled it with the choicest compost from the bottom of my heap, topping it up with John Innes No 2. Several liberal handfuls of dried chicken-manure ensured that conditions would be perfect - nothing but the best for the fellows I had in mind for this hearty meal. Then I went around the garden in search for suitable tenants. A few minutes and several handfuls of dandelion root later, I was ready to do the planting!
A little unusual I grant you, but for many months now I've been fascinated by the idea of taking common garden weeds out of their usual settings and doing something different with them. Last autumn I sowed a seed tray with hundreds of greater plantain (Plantago major
) seeds and I'm harbouring a desire to see what I can do with container grown bindweed (Calystegia sepium
In her entertaining book How to Enjoy your Weeds
, Audrey Hatfield says "In many an old kitchen garden of palace, manor, rectory and cottage, rows of dandelions bred up to giant size could once be seen, manured and pampered to be served at table". I'm picturing my black galvanised metal container contrasting with huge sun-yellow heads of the dandelions - a magnet for all the neighbourhood hoverflies and butterflies.