How the garden grows

It's hibernation weather. But from a window, I notice the garden's rhythms as it works its way through midwinter. Waving, looping, bristling, springing – each plant is moving in its own way...

What starts me off on this view is the three-cornered leeks. Big, soft loops of fresh green, these will produce chandeliers of white flowers come Spring and, a little overenthusiastic, the job of keeping them back to make space for other plants. But for now, they bring welcome freshness and deliciously oniony, garlicky leaves for the kitchen.

The hydrangea waves and now, buds burst into sharp green leaf. Just to its left, I spot the hollyhocks unfolding.

The sage grows in all directions, its woody stems sending some soft grey-green whole leaves amongst those nibbled by beetles.

The alpine strawberries loop from pot to pot, new leaves out. Wild plants chance their arm in other pots while the bulbs get going, the first long limbs of narcissi stretching out.

The three variously-unruly conifers grow in brushes, new growth bristling while I'm not looking...

...and as dusk falls and I draw as much from memory as by sight, I see the curls and curves of ivy, shrub and stone.

For today's sketches, I've used traditional watercolours, softer than my usual inks and good, it turns out, for the blue late afternoon light. I add in other materials as I go – a bit of highlighter here; a gold pencil there; a bit of white fineliner.

What's next, I wonder? First nodding flower heads out, I'm looking forward to snowdrop season.

Ballpen, watercolour, fineliner, highlighter, crayon on handed-down paper.

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