This garden has really awakened my appreciation of ornamental plants and just how useful they are for wildlife, especially in the early parts of the year when food is scarce.

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Without a doubt, my favourite part of the garden in spring is the alpine garden. The masses of starry, blue scillas that carpet the entire area never fails to cheer me up, however miserable the spring may be.

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Mixed in with the scillas are some darker purples from the grape hyacinths and the palest of lemon petals of the primroses, fluttering in the biting spring winds like the wings of tenacious butterflies, their cherry, yolky throats also visited by the bees.

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I'm not sure if the scillas were also planted in the neighbouring bed or if they've crept their way there, to sit among more vibrant primulas and some comparatively garish pastel hyacinths, but the bees appreciate their proliferation.

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During the renovations the alpine bed will be under the unsympathetic tyres of a digger so I've joined the Alpine Garden society in the hope that I will make friends with some people who may be able to advise me on how to preserve this blue spring treasure.