What a bumper year it is for blossom. But my friend Bronwen reminded me that she hasn’t seen the ubiquitous cherry bloosom shot that I take every year. We have around forty cherry trees lining the road all the way to the letter box.
I get up early, position myself at the top of the drive and try and get the narcissus thalia (white) into the same shot as an avenue of white cherry blossom.
I messed up. The weather has been so sunny and dry that the blossom came out, flowered and set fruit in the space of just ten days. So I’m afraid you will have to eschew that particular delight this year.
Instead I offer you the quince bank.
This is the east garden; a steep bank that contains a few trees – two monstrous pine trees, a fig, and fourteen quinces.
I’ve been photographing the bank from many angles at different times of the day just so you can see how gorgeous the scene is.
It almost glows in the dark.
The downside is that the blossom has no scent. But I’ve learned to be philosophical about quince. As our fruit has no scent either. Well, not when you have just picked the fruit and place it in a bowl and hang about ‘waiting for it’s perfume to scent a room’.
Never mind. Just getting the fruit is the hard part and that is all down to timing. It flowers later than the cherries and seems to get hammered by late frosts too. We had no fruit last year and I’m just watching the forecast a little anxiously to see it doesn’t happen again in the next few days.
The cherries are fine as they are already setting fruit. But our bees have to work hard pollinating such a huge variety of flowers and fruit at this time of year. And they don’t enjoy battling gales or cold weather to get to all fourteen trees.
Were I completely obsessed and no one was watching, I might go at the blossom with a fine paintbrush and hand pollinate. But that would be madness. I can’t reach most of the trees because the slope is too steep. So I think I’ll let nature take its course.