Everywhere you go in the UK at this time of year, there are geraniums and pelargoniums of all shades blooming in tubs and window boxes, in the middle of roundabouts and in other public spaces and gardens.
But there are also plenty of the stragglier ones, too, that are every bit as bright as their cousins.
It was just this kind of floral display that made me envisage a busy, brash and careless conversation between flowers years ago:
The Language of Flowers
Nineteen to the dozen, geraniums
gossip brightly, leaning from their window boxes
to get a better view. Pansies nod
and smile, exchanging pleasantries
with passersby. Shocking pink petunias
shout aloud, while pompom marigolds,
in shades of summer, shine
like a myriad cartoon suns.
Last year, when I bought a tray of what I thought were mixed geraniums, they all turned out white. I thought I’d just buy some more this year, but as most of them weathered the winter quite well and they are all in full bloom now, it seems a waste of money to think of replacing them.
So in my yard, it’s not cartoon suns I’m seeing but cartoon clouds and sheep.
Much as I’d like to have more colour in the yard, I couldn’t really have done that with pink geraniums.