Updated: Mar 1, 2020
Nature moves in rhythm with the seasons, the farm does the same and island life too. Never before have I felt so closely connected to the changing seasons. My working life now follows the pattern of light and weather rather than the time of shift or clinic as it did in the NHS. Each season on the farm brings with it pleasures and challenges, the cosiness of winter, the business of summer.
Spring is a wonderful season for many people, that feeling of new beginnings, a fresh start. The lengthening light and growing warmth. It’s a time on the farm when I spend many hours in my “office “, the greenhouse. Silvered wooden frames, glass misty with mildew. Even on a gloomy, cold winters day, the greenhouse provides light and warmth and I have a dreamy view of the farm, Tresco channel and Appletree Bay. Within are plans and hopes for a successful season, hundreds of tiny seedlings and tender young plants. Some days I listen to the radio, other days I just enjoy the sounds of the island around me, the sea, the wind, the birds. From now on there is a constant rotation of planting, potting on and hardening off and the greenhouse bursts with life.
I have sneaked in a quick swim after the school run and before I go and start work in the greenhouse. The day is bright and breezy, tall spiked echiums are just begging their show of beautiful blue and purple spires. The island hedges and tucked away corners are filled with the smell of wild garlic and onion as the little tri-cornered leeks grow, with their dainty white flowers and delicious stalks.
I wander down past Carn Villa, Hanjague, Atlanta, Bank and Glenhope, down to Great Par with its expansive bay that sweeps out into the wild Atlantic. There is still the distant roar and thunder of a big swell and the water is swirled up into an opaque green. As I dive down through the gloom, the seabed becomes clearer. The sand looks like corrugated sheeting, great rolling peaks and troughs of golden grains of ancient rock. Circling gulls and two elegant swans are my swimming companions. Neither of us is worried about sharing the water but we keep a respectful distance.
My office with a view