My Garden This Weekend – 15th June 2014


Some times you have to listen to people when they are giving you advice and you also have to listen to your body when it is protesting.  I haven’t done either very well recently.  Consequently, by the end of Saturday I was completed exhausted and my body ached all over.  I suspect a two day trip to Plymouth to see my youngest son’s end of University design show driving for 3 hours each way in 25C degrees and standing up lots in a warm studio may have been one thing too many.  So today I have cancelled my plans and decided not to attend the Stocktonbury Gardeners Market or Noel Kingsbury’s open garden or the other garden I was toying with.  Today I followed one of my commentators, Yvonne from New Zealand’s, advice and scheduled some sleep and rest.


Everything seemed to be even bigger and lusher when I got home on Saturday afternoon despite it only being 24 hours since I went away.  I suspect that what really happens is that I returned with fresh and less jaded eyes.  So much to do but I have to remind myself that there are no major jobs to be done and so a day of pottering was prescribed.


Someone asked me how wide the path between the Cottage Border and the Big Border was.  I am rubbish at measurement so I can show you it is one sleeping cat wide! This seems to be Maisie’s new favourite sleeping place, I think it is nice and warm in the sun.

2014_06080010Being over tired I was awake early so decided to start my gardening pottering early in case it turned out hot again.  So 8:30 saw me tackling the wilderness that is the top border.  This border runs along the front of the top fence and I have started to grow Pyracantha and Chaenomeles along the fence to provide coverage.  In front of these are three Phyllostacys flexuosa to add coverage above the fence line.  I am pretty sure this is the type of bamboo as if you look at the stems they zig zag which is just amazing to me.  The plants have been in probably 4 years now and this is the first time the stems have zig zagged so much so that I had forgotten that was what attracted me to this variety in the first 2014_06150014place! I have also added a Dahlia Imperalis and Cephalaria gigantea to the border as well as some Geranium palmatum.  I have been remiss in keeping an eye on this border and the Cephalaria has grown to nearly 7 ft tall and flopped all over the path.  The weeds were out of control and the Pyracantha needed serious pruning and tying into the fence and I also wanted to thin out the bamboo so the zig zags were more noticeable.

At the end of the path is a pot with a dahlia to add a focal point although this morning it was hard to see the focal point! I did struggle with corralling the stems of the Cephalaria gigantea so I must remember to stake the stems earlier next year.  This area is all a little hit and miss without a real plan and I suppose in my head once the plants in the Hardy Exotic Border (on the lower side of the path) have grown up the view from the path down on the garden will be obscured and you will need to peer through leaves.  At the moment this is the view and to give you some idea of perspective and steepness of the slope you can just see the bench on the new seating area at the bottom.


After lots of tying in and pruning I decided a more gentle activity was required so I weeded the patio which was looking very green with lots of grass and weed seedlings.  As I said to my son I have done the bottom and the top of the garden which should make everything in between look neat!


I also pruned back the rosemary but that’s for another post.

At the end of the day I am pleased I decided to be sensible as I feel relaxed and recharged and when I look outside I don’t feel a sense of despair when I see the weedy patio.



8 Comments Add yours

  1. Good job. I find it extremely hard to say no to anything, especially a bit of fun. The patio, and the whole garden really, look terrific.

  2. hoehoegrow says:

    Now, measurement by sleeping cats, is the way forward I’m sure!! I , for one, never really estimated properly using metric measurements, but I can visualise the width of a sleeping cat with no problem !
    The garden looks very lush Helen, and I know this year, things seem to be growing more quickly than usual, due to the magic mix of sun and rain. Although it all looks terrific it does equate to a lot of hard work !

  3. I always find a walk through your garden to be so special; your perennials are so lovely this time of year.

  4. Sal Ward says:

    I absolutely agree with your decision to tidy up the bit nearest the house. I always try to do the same. Even if I know there are areas that need lots of attention further afield in the garden, it means I see most regularly the neat bits next to the house, and that makes me feel altogether better. Keep up the good work, I love to see your progress!

  5. Kim gibson says:

    I find that paths that are “sleeping cat” wide are good, feel part of the garden while I walk them.

  6. Yvonne Ryan says:

    So Lush!! I think pyrocanthus has become a weed here and gone too rampant. Also bamboo can only be the clumping varieties ans goes MAD. Cherry and I have now had 2 wines in our new bird bush and watched the sun so down at 5pm then wham, bang by 5.30 it’s dark! We said goodbye to our lovely French Wwoofer last night who is going back on Thusday. What a lovely guy he has been and so hard working. We took lots of photos in the new bush the he and his love German girlfriend had prepared for us. Nothing like young mussels to do the hard work! Sounds as tho’ you only took 1/2 of my advice as to taking it east!!

  7. Love the sleeping cat measurement. And the reminder of dahlia imperialis. I used to have one… I empathize with the physical woes at the beginning of this post.

  8. bittster says:

    Glad to see you taking a break here and there, I feel better about my own idleness.
    Your path width made me laugh! The British measurements are hard enough to keep up with…. slugs and rods and inches and pounds…. but to add sleeping cat lengths!?

Please feel free to leave comments as its always lovely to get feedback. I try to respond to comments as much as possible but sometimes life and work get in the way but I will do my best to respond especially if your comment is a question.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s