What a lovely autumn weekend. Misty cool mornings followed by warm sunny afternoons. I do love Autumn; its my second favourite season after Spring.
We were busy with some family gatherings and a need to buy a new wheelbarrow – yes my lovely purple wheelbarrow is no more. But I did find time to start the mammoth bulb planting project I have on my hands. I would like to say that this was planned but whilst it may have started like that the reality is that whims and too many opportunities to buy from wonderful bulb merchants have led to a glut of bulbs. I did make some notes and plans when I place my annual bulb order with Avon Bulbs but then there was last weekends purchases at the AGS Bulb Day and a lack of self-control at the local garden centre when we were buying the wheelbarrow.
Continuing with my learning to love my front garden project I have planted some Crocus chrysanthus ‘Blue Pearl’ and also Sternbergia lutea near the front door. Also more Colchicums were added to what is sort of becoming a collection. Both Colchicum agrippinum and Colchicum speciosum album were purchased at the Bulb Day and have been planted out in the back garden with a dash of slug pellets to keep the molluscs at bay. For the last two years I have grown lots of small bulbs in terracotta pots but this year I have decided to plant the hardy ones out in the ground, mainly to free up space in the greenhouse but I believe a lot of them will do better in the soil. So I have been tipping out the pots and planting out ,or for those that need some protection repotting. I was thrilled to discover that my two bulbs of Galanthus peshmenii have bulked up and there were 5 or 6 chips/bulbs. Hopefully they will flower before Christmas.
I wanted to get on today as I am conscious of how much I want to get done before the winter hits but as is often the case with my gardening my plans went astray. I have been conscious that the nights are getting colder and so I wanted to get my succulents in and under cover. However, having tried sand in the deep staging this past year I have decided that it isn’t working well for me. It retains too much moisture despite the drainage holes and moss has been growing. So today I spent the morning digging out the sand and lugging it up the garden to go on the very top path. We then filled the staging with horticultural grit. The staging is the type you use for plunge beds so the drainage is very good and it won’t hold the water as much as the sand did. This should reduce the moisture levels in the greenhouse and keep it warmer over the winter.
Having played mud pies with the soggy sand for the morning and spent a delightful afternoon with my niece I quickly stored away the succulents in their new refreshed home. Needless to say the list of jobs I wanted to do this weekend hasn’t really been reduced at all but the greenhouse was a job that I had been dithering about for ages so I am really pleased I got it done – one less worry.