There is a whisper in the air…a hint…a suggestion…a little whiff of the festive season. It is far too soon to mention the C word in this house but one or two minor preparations are being made.

Some foraging has been done

Some cones have been collected and eyed up for their decorative potential

I have planted up some indoor bulbs for Christmas

They are in a variety of potentially festive containers which have been popped onto the windowsill to do their thing (plant them in bulb fibre, with their tops just level with the top of the fibre and put the container in a warm, light spot. Keep the fibre moist, you don’t need to put narcissus paperwhite grandiflora bulbs into cold and dark to start them off)

I have also found a cool, dark space for some hyacinth bulbs. I am growing them in hyacinth jars over water. The water needs to be just below the bulb to stop them rotting off and they do need to be in the dark to start them. Bring them out in about 6 weeks time when their roots are well established in the water (kids love this bit) and the green shoot is making its presence felt. I’ve chosen all white ones this year but they come in a nice variety of colours.

Thinking ahead to next year, you could be planting giant alium bulbs now so that next May you’ll have these

and next October you can be drying them

So that you can, like I may have just done, order some spray on glitter with a view to making a decoration or two!

What are you up to this weekend? Have you done any preparations for ‘that time of year yet’ – if you’re really organised you might want to keep that to yourself or I may cry.

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