I can’t remember when it changed. But it did. I can’t remember when I started enjoying the park at the end of our road. Or when it became alive. Children in the play area. Teens playing football. Families picnicking. Trendies sitting on the grass chatting. People playing on the fixed table tennis tables. But it did. So very different to the 80’s when the park was threatened with a cut and cover tunnel for the planned Euro star route. It never happened. Thank the lord. A community grew up.
This year a sea of daffodils has appeared. Beautiful. Colourful. Interspersed with blue.
It’s a joy to walk through the park on the way to the station. Past my favourite tree.which is now staring to bud.
This year there are plans to plant wildflowers around the edges. There are hanging baskets to be hung on the lamps posts along the path. The wildflowers by the Friends of Warwick Gardens. The hanging baskets by Southwark Council.
Outside the gate and along the path are cherry trees. The white blossom being scattered in the wind. Beautiful at this time of the year. Three or four in a row. Here a sea of white.
Leaving the park you head towards the station. Via the Holly Grove shrubbery. Or via the road. As often as I can I walk through the shrubbery. A small bit of green along Holly Grove. Naturally. That’s where it gets its name from. Just to check out what’s flowering. What’s there to surprise.
A Narrow space. Some seating. Houses to the left. Black railings to the right. A curved path down the middle.
I didn’t know when it was planted. Or who planted it. But for a council owned space the planting is interesting. Very interesting. Some great perennials. Unusual ones for a local green open space.
A little research shows the land was purchase in 1897 by Camberwell Council for £996 planted and opened to the public in 1897. Its opposite the listed houses which were built between 1816 and 1822.
The details of the purchase of Holly Grove shrubbery give additional details.
There’s ceanothus. I’ve never been lucky with ceanothus – not in Somerset anyway. Maybe too wet. There’s Forsythia. A memory of my parents garden. They had one bush. I’ve never quite got forsythia.
There’s melianthis major. I intend to have some in our Spanish garden after seeing them in Malaga Alcazar.
There are hellebores. Two colours. There are bulbs interspersed with dandelions. Just inside the black iron railings. I’m surprised that the railings weren’t removed during the war years.
Things have come alive. There is colour. The lime green of the Euphorbia. The pink of a plant I can’t identify. The whites. The yellows. There are blackbirds in the bushes whilst those pesky parakeets screech overhead.
It makes a lovely walk through first Warwick Hardens and then Holly Grove on the way to the station and the noise and clutter of Peckham Rye.
At the end of our street the other way is Camberwell Arts College. A newly refurbished frontage of the college which is adjacent to the South London gallery. A bright frontage. Lit at night.
In front of the college on the wide pavement area they have created beds. I have walked past here a lot. I can’t remember what was here before. But now there are flower beds. The front ones have been planted with beautiful white daffodils. With what looks like white vinca. And the prospect of alliums. Hopefully white too. Genius planting. Not to have your usual bog standard yellow.
It’s is lovely to see such fantastic planting. Who ever is responsible – well done! Behind the front beds are beds on a slope. It looks like these are full of alliums. I will keep a look out for the flowering as I go to the Sainsbury’s local when I run out of Milk. Toilet rolls. Or cat food. One of the three.
We may be inner city but there is plenty of colour. Some lovely planting. And at long last. Some sun and warmth to bring it all on. .