Planning for... Magnificent Meadows February 22, 2016 19:01

Last month I read a very timely article about the value of joining a local gardening club. To be fair, I had already joined a local gardening club, but had yet to attend a meeting. Prompted by the article I decided to bite the bullet last Friday night. 

Going to the gardening club meeting was met with a slight sense of fear and trepidation. It cemented the fact that I have (against all my best efforts and attempts at reckless, foolhardy behaviour over the years) turned into our parents. Alas, I am more mild than wild. However I am so glad I made the leap and went to my first meeting. 

The subject was 'Magnificent Meadows'  - a three year, nationwide partnership project led by Plantlife to protect, nurture and create meadows for all to enjoy. 

I have always hankered after a "prettyish kind of a little wilderness", a la Pride and Prejudice. Albeit a very bijou version. Luckily it turns out that when it comes to meadows, size isn't everything. Our wonderful speaker shared with passion and enthusiasm the opportunity to create a meadow area anywhere. Literally. Meadows in window boxes through to full scale "you can graze your cows here" sized affair were all valued and discussed.  Within a few minutes I was busily taking notes of wonderfully named meadow grasses and flowers, the implications of nutrients and PH levels and conjuring up plans for my own little meadow area by my dwarf fruit trees. Wild meadow flowers could be ideal for pollination, I thought. And it avoids having to mow around tricky trees roots.  A less virtuous reason I grant you, but surely a consideration... 

Like most things of value in life, creating a meadow is a long term commitment. We probably won't see a lot of prettyish wilderness for around 4 - 5 years. Until then, it's just the messy, slightly unkempt variety for us. But I guess that is what makes a meadow special. And at least I'll have a lovely group of fellow gardeners to swap notes with, commiserate failures and share successes (not to mention seeds) courtesy of my lovely local garden club.