The garden is looking shabby and unloved at the end of this month and my excuse is that it is autumn but if I am honest it has looked a bit like this  for most of the year.  However, the tide of indecision is  turning as I  am slowly but surely moving forward with my plans.  Although  this has resulted in some lost sleep as I wake up in the early hours and then can’t get to sleep as I am mentally moving plants around.

Above is what I call the gravel border and I said in last month’s post that I was going to put the new pond here.  Change of plan – keeping the border and we are going to create a seating area.  This will mean that there will be no pond in the garden as I am filling the existing pond in to make a bog garden.  However, it turns out  that the rescue cat I got 6 months ago is a real hunter and I can’t bear seeing her walking along with a frog hanging out of her mouth so if I whilst I am removing a habitat I feel that I am also encouraging the frogs to use  neighbours pond and avoid my cat.

As you can see I have made no progress in the last week with sorting out the old pond but I haven’t been lazy.  I have been working hard at the allotment tidying up ready for the winter and I have been working on sorting out the new cottage garden border.   There has been much plant moving and although the border (below) look quite bare at the moment there is a lot  in there but it is all cut back and tidied.  Now we have had  some good rain I will give it a good autumn mulch and then sit back and hope the tulip and allium bulbs I have planted look fab in the summer.

I have some apple trees on order to use for step over apples along the wall edge as I think this will add some much-needed structure.  It may be that I widen this border but I will wait a year before doing so so I can concentrate and complete all the other projects.

I’ve planted lots of Erythroniums and dwarf Narcissus in the woodland border  so again fingers crossed that something resembling the pictures in my head will appear in the spring.

I am though pleased with the top of the garden.  I have finally turned the corner here and although it looks quite bare at the moment it is very full but the plants are quite small.  The three bamboos I planted in the spring have started to send up new shoots and hopefully next year will be tall enough to screen my neighbours.  In front of them is a mixture of shrubs to add some depth and, along with the vine and flowering quince, and to break up the bleakness of the fence.  While I wait for the shrubs to fill out I have filled the gaps with blood-red wallflowers and a mixture of red tulips kept over from last year.  The border gets a lot of sun so I have also added an edging of bearded irises.  Again it looks wonderful in my imagination!

Having avoided the pond by doing the cottage border I am now distracted by the potential of a new area my eldest son has cleared for me.  The top corner was full of branches and other twigs etc collected over the last six years.  My son has taken all this to the scout hut where he is a leader ready for bonfire night.  He and his friend have also cut down some of the lower branches of the trees and tidied up the stumps where my neighbour has butchered the tree from his side.  Now hopefully there are no more branches overhanging the fence which he can reach.  The ground slopes a lot in this corner so we are going to put across a raised bed, as we did across the other side of the back of the garden.  I am then going to plant it up with Hydrangeas and some form of large, tall grass to give some privacy and height and movement.  I can then use the stones from around the old pond to finish off the border in front of the tree and sort out the planting here with more woodland plants.

A final  view of my cottage border.  I have moved an Abelia from the front garden to add some substance to the corner of the border.  I am really glad I did this especially as I dithered about it for ages but my instinct kept telling me that this was what was needed and I  think it was right.

So I have been busy but I have such ambitious and multiple projects that I suppose to me it doesn’t look like I have made much progress but writing this post as showed me that I have.