Mid May and Karel Čapek’s Gardener’s Prayer

We had the hottest and driest April on record this spring, and the first half of May was just as warm, producing only a few passing showers. This sort of weather is absolutely wonderful… unless you are a gardener! Still, the garden has soldiered on and produced glorious flowers once again. Here are the Moon Daisies in our meadow…

And a view from the top of the rockery shows how my Man of Many Talents has mowed even fewer of them away this spring 🙂

From the bottom of the rockery I can still look across the top of the giant Miscanthus and see the early deep reddish pink peony. Today the first white ones opened too. And the ferns in the foreground have taken off since we got more rain.

Recently my thoughts have often returned to this ‘prayer’ I found some years ago in ‘The Gardener’s Year’ by Karel Čapek. His wit is sometimes charming, but occasionally beyond me! However this prayer says it all perfectly, so I shall share!

“If it were of any use, every day the gardener would fall on his knees and pray somehow like this:

‘O Lord, grant that in some way it may rain every day, say from about midnight until three o’clock in the morning, but, you see, it must be gentle and warm so that it can soak in; grant that at the same time it would not rain on campion, alyssum, helianthemum, lavender, and others which you in your infinite wisdom know are drought-loving plants – I will write their names on a bit of paper if you like – and grant that the sun may shine the whole day long, but not everywhere (not, for instance, on spiraea, or on gentian, plaintain lily, and rhododendron), and not too much; that there may be plenty of dew and little wind, enough worms, no plant-lice and snails, no mildew, and that once a week thin liquid manure and guano may fall from heaven. Amen.’ ”


34 thoughts on “Mid May and Karel Čapek’s Gardener’s Prayer

  1. Such wise words Cathy! Still smiling…I think I have a copy of The Gardener’s Year somewhere. Must look for it. Enjoyed seeing your meadow with the Moon Daisies. Such a happy moment in a garden.

  2. I like that prayer, Cathy, but would be grateful for any rain I could get. Your meadow looks wonderful.

  3. We have also had a horrible spring. Those few blooms should give you hope. Hope for the answer to your prayers. Have a great weekend.

  4. Cathy wonderful prayer of Karel Capek: just what we want the gardeners said charmingly. Your meadow full of Margaritas de la Luna is divine. The ferns are beautiful. The giant Miscanthus I like a lot. The reddish pink peony I love. Your rockery looks divine. Happy weekend. Greetings from Margarita.

  5. Amen to that Cathy! Your garden is looking most colourful and lush despite the lack of the wet stuff. We have been having a dry spell too this month and I’ve already been out with the watering can this morning to give some a drink to some new arrivals.

    • I have refrained from doing any planting this spring so far as the watering would just get on top of me! Hope your new plants settle in Anna, with some gentle rain overnight perhaps!

    • Thanks Karen! We let different bits of the meadow grow each year now and the moon daisies seem to enjoy being given freedom to flower every so often! 🙂

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