Our May workday last week was a beautiful sunny day – the kind to lift your spirits. And Brighton Greenway was looking fresh, green and pleasant. Most of our work focused on the ornamental beds around the central fossil bench. It’s been quite hard to maintain the plants there and protect them from being trampled on or dug up, presumably by dogs, but also possibly by other animals such as squirrels. Sadly, some of the lavender and rosemary plants – normally extremely hardy – have given up the ghost after losing branches and being flattened. But others that had been a little sulky in the winter were springing back to life.
A surprising success has been the golden oregano (above) which is definitely holding its own behind the fossil bench. Some of the wild flower seedlings which looked like they had disappeared have come around and flowered. And amazingly, the hebe at the back of the bed – a left-over from the original planting in 2008-9 – has come back with lovely flowers this year. I’ve been promising to plant Verbena bonariensis – a perfect pollinator plant – in these beds for some time. We extracted seedlings last autumn from between the bricks on the forecourt of London Rd Station, and they’ve been growing on in my greenhouse. We planted around 10. Hopefully, they’ll establish and self-seed in this area.