No, not wild camping in the hills or trekking across a desert somewhere, but days on end in the garden, as I try to pack a summer’s worth of gardening into a few weeks, before we head off across the Channel in a fortnight’s time. The cool, showery weather in my last post was followed by a surprisingly windy few days, but things have now settled down to be warmer, dry and calm – ideal weather for gardening.
Once DH had fired up the ride-on mower and tamed the hayfield that our lawn had become, it was time to tackle the flowerbeds. For some reason the delightful previous owners of our house seem to have had a love affair with privet, with the result that two out of three of the flowerbeds were dominated by disproportionately large privet bushes.
To get my hand in, I decided to tackle the smaller one first, so on a day in May, I roped in DH to help. After a titanic struggle with the aid of a winch (yes, really!) we succeeded in dragging the privet bush out of the ground, roots and all, and I set to work to make the bed ready for more ornamental occupants. These I largely acquired at the village church’s plant sale last Saturday and they are now safely ensconced in their new home with plenty of space to grow and spread.
In between times I've been making inroads on the much bigger privet bush which takes up nearly half of the larger bed at the far end of the garden. It’s far too big to repeat our previous uprooting success, so I’m hacking it back until we can see the roots and decide how we want to tackle their extraction.
For light relief I’ve also started work on the other half of the bed, which is a mass of mint run wild, creeping buttercup and nettles. There is no way this bed will be ready for planting before we go to France, but if I can at least get rid of the great mass of invasive weeds, it will be much easier to work with when we get home in September. This garden has the potential to be a really lovely place and I’m enjoying starting to get it into shape and planning for the future.
If there were any justice I should be sylphlike after all this hard work, but failing that I am at least more flexible and I sleep like a log! The morning mist has lifted now and the sun has come out, so if you’ll excuse me I’m off out into the garden…
|Where to plant them...?|
|Safely bedded in|
|I may not be able to kneel, but at least I can still bend.|
|Grrr... Those dratted mint roots!|
|An unexpected crop of ready-minted potatoes!|
|Just to prove we DO have colour in the garden...|