Columbia Road Market 32
Sitting in Philippa Stockley‘s garden in Whitechapel last week reminded me of Clematis Montana that grows so readily in East London. In recent years, I have seen them all over the neighbourhood spreading rampant on fences and even up onto telegraph poles. I photographed the fine specimen above growing in Woodseer St at the junction with Spital St, where I have admired it over successive summers as it has crept further and further along the fence. A remarkably hardy species, it is undiminished by the rigors of last winter. Rejected by some gardeners for its ubiquity and ridiculous profusion of flowers, I embrace Clematis Montana for its vigorous life. In my garden, there is an old Laurel that has grown to become a tree and this morning I bought myself a white Clematis Montana at Columbia Rd for £6 to climb up and smother it with flowers. Then for £5 I bought two Thyme plants, a Variegated and a Golden Thyme to plant together in a pot on my kitchen window sill. It was a moist occluded morning and by the time I arrived home, it was raining for the first time in weeks, which seemed slightly exotic, whilst being just what my garden needs now.