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Columbia Road Market 12

November 15, 2009
by the gentle author


The clouds were clearing from the sky this morning and there was even a rainbow as I negotiated the puddles and fallen leaves on my way to the market. There was an especially deep puddle under the railway bridge which sent a shower of dirty water onto the narrow pavement every time a car passed. So I had to wait my moment and make a quick dash to avoid getting my feet wet.

This is now the season of the year when trading becomes roulette with the weather for the stall holders. They pack up their plants in the dark, drive through the rain and stand for hours outdoors in the cold, all in the hope that the weather will not drive away the customers and send them home empty-handed after their hard work. It must be soul destroying, and there are always a few empty places in the market at this time, where stall holders just cannot countenance the risk of a wasted day at the expense of so much effort.

Today I found these autumn flowering lilies in a delicate barely perceptible shade of shell pink. Schizostylis (Pink Princess) is a perennial and shade tolerant, so I bought two pots for five pounds and I should like them to take over a corner of my garden. Plants that manage to flower and thrive, putting forward flowers in the bare garden of autumn and winter, are particularly close to my heart. There is a poignancy about them that gets me and it tells me that at heart I am a winter gardener.

One Response leave one →
  1. November 15, 2009

    Oh! I never thought that gardeners could be divided into different seasons. I love the sparse economy of winter gardens and it has felt like a guilty secret in a world of gardeners who love the abundance of summer. Thank you for this insight.

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