"Fair daffodils, we weep to see
You haste away so soon"

Herrick's account of nature's transience may seem almost corny, but to me as a novice gardener it carries extra force this year. I've spent a lot of time growing runner beans. Preparing the ground, erectig a supportive structure, buying the plants. Putting them in, watering them, and then watching them grow, climbing up, spreading flowers and finally - producing beans. For a glorious few weeks we've been eating them every day, passing them around to neighbours, storing the surplus in the freezer. And now, all too soon, it's over. The few beans left are thick, heavy and inedible. It was worth doing, and I'll do it all again next year, but i'm shocked at the speed with which the cycle is completed. Or am I just getting old?