October seems to be a month for far-flung festivals: Oktoberfest in Germany (lots of beer and sausages), the Concurs de Castells in Tarragona, Spain (where people compete to form nine-storey human pyramids), a matchmaking shindig for eager singles in Lisdoonvarna, Ireland, and almost all of India celebrates Diwali (the festival of light).
Everybody loves September, except possibly schoolchildren as this signals the end of a long, lazy summer and they must go (to borrow a bit of Shakespeare), “creeping like a snail unwillingly to school”. But, on the educated assumption that most of the estimable readers of this magazine are above school-leaving age, then I reckon this is one of the best months of the year.
There are seats free on all the trains, the roads are little less busy and shopping seems a tad more relaxed. What is going on? I will tell you: it is August, and many people are enjoying far-off beaches and the myriad pleasures offered by the departures lounge at Luton airport.
Are any of you surfers? I have always been rather captivated by the idea of swooping and turning atop a crashing wave. Duck diving, barrel riding, wipeouts and doggy doors. However, I only ever get as far as standing up for a short, though glorious, moment before coming a cropper.
One of the greatest joys of June is to lie on the lawn. The ground is warm enough to prevent any unfortunate chills and the grass is sufficiently thick to provide a comfortable mattress. All around, the air is rose scented, warm and lazy with the buzzing of bees.
May has arrived in a tornado of growth and fecundity. It is the all-powerful wizard of warm days waving its wand across our gardens – as if Gandalf or Merlin had landed outside the back door in a great plume of coloured smoke and a shower of glitter.
Hundreds upon thousands of tulips in jewel tones wash over the Leicestershire garden of Robin and Sally Bowie, delighting owners, designer and visitors alike
There are many remarkable things about April – for starters, it is the only month that contains the letter ‘p’ and no other months rhyme with ‘squill’ (or trill). But, most importantly for us gardeners, April is the gateway to spring.
Traditionally, this is the month of the mad March hare – not named after the one at the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party in Alice in Wonderland, but so-called because they can be seen in the countryside boxing (it is the females doing the punching), leaping and generally cavorting
If February had a mother, then even she would be hard pushed to see the good side of her beloved child. It’s not a month when we spring lightly from bed, fling open the doors and rush out into the garden
The RHS exists to ensure that gardening improves people, plants and the planet. Here, in the second of a three-part series, a member of Council examines how the charity furthers the understanding, knowledge and appreciation of the plants gardeners grow
It is tricky to find a reason to love January. We are all feeling a bit sluggish after the jollities of Christmas and, to be honest, our gardens are not exactly stuffed to the gunwales with excitement and fizzy whizzings.
In the rolling grounds of Pensthorpe, Piet Oudolf’s textured and colourful Millennium Garden sits alongside a naturalistic complex of islands and lakes filled with all manner of waterfowl.
This month is, like many football matches, a game of two halves.
No more pages to load