Last week I told you a little story. I like to think that it was a happy story. Today I want to introduce you to another plant in our garden. There is a story behind this one too, but it is very different.
My grandmother was brought up by her sister after her mother died. This meant that my mother and her cousins were very close, even though they were older. One lived not far from us in Middlesex, and we would often visit. Aunt Rita only had one son, but she had two beautiful grand-daughters, both of whom married very well. On one of the visits to Twickenham Aunt Rita gave my mother a plant from her garden.
This plant is not so well travelled as the Viola as it was only passed on about 15 years ago, but part of it has been in our garden for a number of years, and the photo above shows it last week, just before we dealt with the bindweed. It is a pretty Osteopermum, which changes from white to lilac as it ages. It only opens when the sun is shining, so we didn’t see much of it last year, but this year the flowers have been quite abundant and prolific.
In the last summer of her time at home my mother spent many days enjoying her garden. Towards the end she wasn’t able to potter around it as much as she would have liked, but this plant was one of her favourites. She would think of Rita and we would talk about her. Sadly, the last couple of years of Rita’s life were filled with great sadness and sorrow. One of her beautiful grand-daughters was murdered by her husband. It was a case that filled the national newspapers at the time, each day bringing new revelations about the ‘other’ life that the husband led. Mum was convinced that it was this that ‘killed’ Aunt Rita.