Hello again from the Garden (3)

Japanese air brushing

This is a lovely technique for hardening off plants. It was developed by the Japanese to save moving plants outdoors. (Though I think I’d still do the previous hardening off exercise anyway.)

Simply sweep your hand very gently and very softly, backwards and forwards over the leaves of tender plants. Do this for about a minute every day. Don’t be tempted to do it for longer than that as you will exhaust the plant.

The act of stroking the plants equates to them being exposed to a strong wind. They must stand their ground to withstand it. There is an old saying “Growing trees are strengthened after they’ve endured a storm.” A bit like ourselves, when the going gets rough, we have to toughen up to survive it. But then that’s what makes us strong.

Of course, there’s nothing to stop you stroking bigger, hardier plants for as long as you want – they can handle it. All the new leaves on trees and plants are soft and delicate this time of year and it’s a very calming peaceful exercise to do.