I managed to do some work in the garden on Sunday; the first time in many weeks that I have spent more than a couple of minutes outside.
Some weeks ago I moved three tubs of spring bulbs – snowdrops with Tete-a-tete daffodils in two tubs and little blue crocuses in the third – from their winter-quarters behind the greenhouse to the front of the house under the kitchen window. They were ready to bloom and they have brightened up the area near the front door. On Sunday I moved the rest of the pots and tubs away from the back of the greenhouse either to the front of the house or to the rear near the conservatory.
The area round the greenhouse has become very wet and waterlogged and the pots were sitting in puddles. Richard and I had a talk about how to solve this problem and I suggested a French drain ( a trench filled with gravel) immediately round the greenhouse and then we discussed again our idea of putting flagstones round the greenhouse to make it nicer to walk on than muddy grass. We have a plastic compost bin near to the greenhouse and a lidded water-butt behind the greenhouse – the water-butt will then go on the flags and so will the compost bin. The water-butt keeps sinking into the ground despite the bricks and flints it is standing on (there must be quite a collection under the water-butt by now). Also, we often get rats, mice and/or voles getting into the compost bin and having the bin on hard-standing would stop that little game! They dig tunnels that come up under the bin and then make themselves at home amongst the potato peelings and weeds.
We also discussed where we would put the new potting shed. We have a very old tumbledown shed in the middle of the garden. It is rotting and disintegrating very quickly and we need to replace it and we don’t want to use the same site for the new shed. We have a very nice tool shed near the greenhouse so the new potting shed with a large window and bench will go next to the tool shed. This will keep all the out-buildings together in one place and will save us a lot of time walking from one side of the garden to the other.
I am considering drawing a plan of our garden as it is now and scanning it so that I can include it in this blog. When we make changes to the garden I can then update the plan.
I mentioned in a former post that our old summerhouse was demolished and the base was extended in readiness for a replacement. The new building arrived and was put up during a gale on 8th February and is just what Richard wanted. He has been enjoying his room with a view and often sits inside it looking out over the big pond.
Behind the summerhouse (you can’t see it from the angle the photo was taken from) is our large open compost heap where we put our bulkier garden clippings and waste. Next door’s chickens are often here turning it over for us and kicking it about and in the summer Richard often finds Grass Snakes sleeping in its warmth. Richard doesn’t like snakes.
I have also mentioned in former posts that the garden is large and is mainly laid to grass. There are a couple of vegetable beds near the summerhouse and another mixed vegetable and flower bed half way up the garden. I had started to use this mixed bed when we moved in to this house but I haven’t had the time to do much to it since my father died and Elinor started suffering so badly with anxiety. Most of my plants there have died and couch grass and ox-eye daisies have taken over. Richard is using part of the bed for his dahlias and chrysanthemums and there is a rhubarb plant and some blackberry canes there too.
There is an old rose arbour next to the mixed bed and on this side of the arbour Richard has made a flowerbed for his favourite flowers. He has also started to make a shrubbery fairly near to our septic tank. We have a large gas tank close to the house and I have made a small flowerbed on the northern side of it and filled it mainly with spring flowers. I haven’t weeded it recently and this will be a project for the next time I get outside.
There are narrow flowerbeds most of the way round the house which I look after and I have also started to landscape the area to the south of the house. I had made a flowerbed near the hedge at the rear of the house but again, I had to abandon this when Dad died and Elinor started to need more support and I had much less free time. Many of my plants are in pots and tubs waiting to find a proper home. I hope to make a gravel garden at the front of the house with paths through it from the front door to the drive way. I bought the gravel for this project eight years ago!
Cherry-plum or Myrobalan Plum (Prunus cerasifera) is not a native tree but has become naturalised here and is often found in hedges. It is often confused with Blackthorn or Sloe (Prunus spinosa) but the Blackthorn flowers open before the leaves come out and the Cherry-plum’s flowers and leaves open at the same time. The cherry-plum isn’t so spiny as Blackthorn.
My music choice today is a song written by B A Robertson and Mike Rutherford shortly after the death of their respective fathers. It is sung by a favourite singer of mine, Paul Carrack, whose father died when Paul was eleven years old. It is a song about the regret we have when we lose a relative and realise all the things we should have said to them when they were alive. I am so glad I was able to tell my father how much I loved him and appreciated the love he had for me.
Thanks for visiting!