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Monday, 13 July 2009

Allow me to introduce...

I’ve been getting complaints that I’ve been hiding the rabbits from the world, so here we go… Louis and Marley (as in Armstrong and Bob), this one’s for you.

We got the rabbits entirely by mistake one day whilst waiting for the optician to finish preparing the boyfriend’s new glasses. We’d wandered across the road to the pet shop opposite and there they were, little bundles of cuteness, and 30 minutes later, there they were, sitting on my terrace. Now before you reach for your phones to call the RSPCA, yes I am aware that pets aren’t toys. I could attempt to reassure by explaining that I had rabbits when I was younger so know what I’m doing but to be honest that didn’t end so well so perhaps it would be best not to mention. Seriously, I am a responsible pet owner.

The one thing I didn’t anticipate was the impact the rabbits would have on the garden. It genuinely was a battle. On the one hand I’ve worked hard on my garden. I spend a disproportionate amount of my waking hours thinking about it and get upset when my plants and plans fail. So, when two overgrown rodents start gnawing on my pride and joys I think it is understandable that I get a little uptight.

On the other hand, no matter how much you love your garden, you can’t ever love it more than you do a pet. After all, the point of a green space isn’t so much to care for it for its own sake, but rather for your own.


Here are the highs and lows of my readjustment period:

1) High: watching the rabbits jumping for joy across the terrace, noses a-twitching and generally being rabbity.
Low: chasing Marley around the terrace three hours later whilst he jumped for joy and dived behind the bath tub whenever I got a little too close.

2) High: seeing the potato plants growing stronger day by day.
Low: seeing Louis eating his way through the aforementioned potato plants.

3) High / Low: Louis jumping face first off the upper level of the terrace straight into the lettuce and then bouncing off. Responsible pet owner.

4) High: deciding that it was probably about time to have my first home grown beetroot salad of the year.
Low: finding one pot of beetroot surrounded by 20 fungi… these things always seem to creep up on me over night. Finding the other pot of beetroot covered in two month old rabbit poo.

5) High: watching my wonderful rabbits enjoying my garden just as much as I do.

I only wish we’d called them Armstrong and Bob.

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Anna dax said...

Awesome post as ever!

I have one question and it is a bit provocative.... is the purpose of a garden only for the enjoyment of the owner?

Also, can you plant some species that attract bees? They have declined by 75% in the UK, and without them, we wont have much pollination and hence, food.


Rachel Surtees said...

Hi Anna,

Thanks for your comment... it's a great question. My very quick answer would be yes, the primary purpose of a garden is for the enjoyment of the owner BUT, i think it's a really interesting point that deserves a much fuller answer so watch this space...


Rachel Surtees said...

And here is my fuller answer...