Six on Saturday – 13th July 2019 – Boundaries

My six this weekend are all about the boundaries because I am celebrating getting my privacy back.  Long term readers of this blog will know that my old neighbours neglected their garden and it was overgrown with a thick barrier of ash and sycamore trees between our two properties which gave me reasonable privacy.

When the new neighbours moved in 3 years ago they did what any of us would do and cleared the garden.  It was quite alarming for me as I suddenly felt like I was in a goldfish bowl.  All the screening above the fence line was gone.  This might not seem such a big deal but our gardens slope up from our houses and so with all the angles you often feel like you can be seen by your neighbours in your garden and they can see you which I don’t like.

Then to make matters worse because the garden had been neglected for so long the fences hadn’t been cared for and in some places it was only the trees and shrubs that were holding things together.  So over the past two winters the fences have disintegrated or have bits missing and it has looked a real mess.

Not any more, they have had the fences replaced and we now have a lovely 6ft fence which is rather beautiful.  Sadly, for the neighbours, as they are at the end of the road they are responsible for all the fences around their property so this must have cost a lot but I think it is fab.  Suddenly, I have my privacy back and it brought home to me just how much I had missed that privacy.  I think there is actually even more privacy than before as the fence is higher than the old one.

Not only have I got my privacy back but I have gained about a foot along the fence line.  I need to fill in the trench left from where they dug out all the old tree roots etc but once I have done that I can play around and give some of my plants more space.  I had left some Hawthorne seedlings grow up in recent years in anticipation of new owners clearing the garden and now I think I will cut the Hawthorne trees back to create more of a hedge along the fence which will in turn allow my Liquidamber tree to have more light and thrive.

The new fence at the end of the patio.  The fence here was previous held up by a variegated ivy that I planted which was OK.  The bamboos in pots were added when they cut all the trees down as it meant they could see straight from their garden down on to my patio which was horrid.  The new fence is higher and somehow I think has obstructed the view but I think the bamboos may stay.  Now they have a smart backdrop I may think again about what is around them and smarten it up.

As I am fixated with fences at the moment I thought I would include my back fence which you can just about make out through the undergrowth.  The garden slopes up to it and last year I removed the path that used to run along the top of the garden as it was never used and was a waste of growing space.  I am encouraging a wild and hardy exotic look up here. There is a huge thistle which has appeared from somewhere which sort of messes up the look of the planting but I was intrigued to see how big it would grow.  Behind it is a fig tree which I had to prune hard last year as it had a lot of long branches going off at angles and I wanted more height than width.  This year it is smothered in figs.  I need to work out when I am meant to harvest them and what to do with the fruit as I don’t think I’ve eaten fresh figs before.

And finally my side fence which is the same style as the neighbour’s new fence but shorter.  I thought I would include this as my final six as it another boundary photo and includes my marmite rose which I included in a previous post.  I inherited this rose when we moved in about 16 years ago and for years and years it had one or two flowers.  Then my other neighbours also indulged in some heavy handed pruning and cut everything back hard meaning that the rose suddenly benefited from light and more rain and this is the result!

For more Six on Saturday posts visit The Propagator’s blog.

I’m off to Yorkshire later today garden visiting for a week so I hope to have some interesting gardens to share with you soon.

 

16 Comments Add yours

  1. bcparkison says:

    A new fence is always welcome. You are going to love figs. They are good for you and just this side of heaven in taste,

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      But how do you know they are ripe and what do you do with them?

    2. bcparkison says:

      Mine sort of bow to the ground (the stem bends down and they soften). Color will depend on type you have. Eat them off of the tree, make preserves or dry. There are plentey of recipes out there. You will love them.

    3. Helen Johnstone says:

      Ok, will keep an eye out for them ripening, although as they are right at the top of the garden spotting them may be a challenge

    4. bcparkison says:

      The birds may beat you if you dont pay attention.

    5. Helen Johnstone says:

      They did last year

    6. That rose is pretty clear evidence of the benefits of light and air!

    7. Helen Johnstone says:

      I totally agree

  2. Jim Stephens says:

    I wish I could have persuaded our neighbour to put up a fence like that, full height and zero transparency. A garden is a very private space to be shared only with the people you choose. Your garden is looking very lush and full of interesting things.

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      Thanks, the soil is clay based so retains moisture most of the time leading to the lushness plus years of compost.

  3. We had our fences on three sides replaced two years ago – I’d let ivy (which was a great screen) grow through it and it caused such a problem! We’ve still got bare fence showing as the lack of ivy has reduced the screening effect, but I’m working on it!

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      We like the fences so much I haven’t made any plans to screen them

  4. They are very handsome fences that your neighbours have put up. When we moved into our garden the neighbouring plot was also overgrown and when it was cleared we also lost our privacy. I stopped using the garden so much for a while until I got used to it.
    I’ve enjoyed reading your blog for a while, and I like the new page layout.

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      I haven’t gardened much since the trees and fence went now I feel reinvigorated

  5. Lora Hughes says:

    Privacy! In our new place, the neighbours to our right have no qualms leaning out their upstairs window to watch me in the garden. Such an odd thing to do. As others’ve said, that is quite a handsome fence. I especially like the bamboo against it. And figs? Mine go from hard green things to soft purple & oh, as bcparkinson said, fresh off the tree, a real delight! Lovely Six.

    1. Helen Johnstone says:

      My old garden had some flats behind and the residents used to sit in the balcony and comment loudly on my activity, we moved house!

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