My head is buzzing with ideas, one idea bouncing off another and taking my gardening thoughts in another direction. It takes me back, two, three years ago or even four years back when I was really immersed in my garden. Over the past period my focus on the garden has been limited for a wide range of reasons which I won’t bore you with but the upside is that I now find myself looking at the garden with fresh eyes. It’s as if I have moved to a new garden and can start again. Even better, I’m not so sentimental about plants as I was before. I find myself looking at plants and thinking this really isn’t working any more or, to be quite frank, I just bored of this plant. Now for some this might sound a terrible way to think as like many keen gardeners I have often nurtured the plants, coaxing them to establish and grow well. But a garden is not a museum, plants out grow their space, the gardener’s tastes move on and change is, in my opinion, healthy.
Now this picture makes me incredibly happy. My hard working greenhouse has been helping me in my horticultural pursuits for at least 10 years and has gone through various iterations. When I first got the greenhouse I set it up with staging on both sides and a potting bench at the end. Its a tiny greenhouse, just enough room for me to stand in the middle and it means I have to spend a lot of time and effort in moving plants around during the seasons to maximise the space. For the last few years I have had some deep tray staging, the type you can plunge pots into gravel or sand in. I installed it as I was dabbling in alpines and miniature bulbs which I enjoyed for a while but the trouble is that I’m easily lead and a bit of a magpie, attracted to one shiny plant after another. So my poor little greenhouse was trying to house alpines, half hardy ferns, and succulents – a recipe for failure. Add to that my complete disengagement and failure was guaranteed. Slowly but surely various plants died, or I planted them out, or just got rid of them. What is now left are the plants that make me happy, albeit it a small and select group.
My new approach is to go back to basics, back to what used to make me happy years back when I first got into gardening. I don’t engage in a lot of social media any more and I think that has freed my mind up, I’m no longer being lead astray by what others are doing, the latest fade or trend. Instead I want to create a lovely, pretty cottage garden full of my favourite plants – both flowers and edible.
The greenhouse is the first step in this new approach. I have removed the deep staging and returned the potting bench. I’ve decided not to have two sets of staging as later this year I would like to grow some tomatoes in the greenhouse so this space is being used for the remaining tenders that still need a winter home. The potting bench has all that is left of my propagating supplies. A month or so ago I ditched all the plastic pots and trays, old seed packets etc and started again.
It has been liberating….now my mind is clear and I can think more clearly and plans are forming.