I have been home alone for most of the weekend with no real plans and it has been blissful. I have been pottering in every sense of the word. I started with weeding the patio which was long overdue and is one of those incredibly satisfying garden jobs. I use the blade of an old screwdriver, whose handle is long gone, and it is just the right size to get between the slabs.
If I am honest I dislike the patio, I always have, but its well down the list of expenditure and it serves a purpose. I dislike it because when I pressure wash it the colour of the slabs is revealed and we have a ‘delightful’ pink and yellow checker box effect! Therefore, I rarely pressure wash it. However now it is weeded and tidied I am rather pleased. I have never been very good at using the patio for relaxation. It is normally the home of trays of seedlings and purchases and the small table often houses seedlings etc. However, in the last couple of weeks my sons have both mentioned that they have sat out in the garden when they have got home and how nice it was. So I have moved all the trays of seedlings up the garden out of the way and arranged the pots of purchases and other things in a more organised/decorative fashion. What a difference, even I have sat on the patio and enjoyed a cuppa and read a magazine.
I have quite a collection of pots many of them accumulated during my brief foray into alpine plant showing. Above are some pans of alpines which live up by the top bench which there is some shade but also sun at some point of the say.
I’m not a huge fan any more of pots of mixed plants, preferring instead collections of individual plants in their own pot. I like being able to ring the changes as things go over. This collection is by the door to the shed and I have added some succulents as this is quite a sunny spot so they should do well here.
Round the corner of the shed is what we call ‘quatermass’. Last year I plunged a couple of pots of zantedeschia into the old tin bath which I was using as a pond and they did incredibly well. So this year I decided to fill the bath with compost and plant it up exclusively with white zantedeschia. There is no drainage in the bath so the compost gets very wet when it rains and takes a while to dry out but the plants are thriving. I did wonder if this was a mad idea but when I visited Brian and Irene’s garden over at Our Garden @19 last weekend I noticed that he had ensata iris growing in sealed pots of compost and they were doing incredibly well too. I had to drag the bath over the gravel this week as it was being engulfed by the neighbouring fern and I see that I need to sort the level out again – opps!
In the very top photo you can see that all the succulents and pelargoniums are out of the greenhouse and in their summer home on the staging. As I said I don’t really like mixed pots or hanging baskets any more. Instead I have planted the window box up with herbs which is already proving very useful and the only hanging basket I have is hanging from the tree by the shed and is housing my Christmas cactus. I went to a talk at the local horticultural group recently on cacti and succulents which was actually really interesting and the speaker advocating treating your Christmas cactus in this way over the summer so I thought why not.
And finally one of my collections of plants by the front door. I was rather than by the Polygala myrtifolia on a recent visit to B&Q so it ended up coming home with me. I have under planted with some nemesis and today added a pelargonium and a pot of oregano. On the other side of the entrance is a deep pink hydrangea, some violas and a succulent. I think it looks charming and it makes me smile when I pull up in the driveway, far more than any other arrangement I have done in the past.
So that’s my weekend – a weekend of potting up, moving pots, and sweeping.