Like the host of this meme I find myself resenting time away from the garden at the moment. Today I would normally go to an HPS meeting but it was either sit in a village hall discussing plants or actually be outside in the garden getting on with sorting out my garden – I chose the garden.
I prefer to garden early in the day or in the evening when others aren’t around as it allows me to turn off completely, hear the bees humming and the birds singing. I like to immerse myself in the garden, thinking about what plant might work where, why is this plant not looking so good, how can I improve that border? So I am looking forward to the evenings getting lighter.
With the wonderful forecast this weekend I was out in the garden as soon as I had done the weekly shop. I wanted to take my Six on Saturday photos first thing as the sun was making the garden glow but it turned out that both my camera batteries were dead so unfortunately the photos don’t reflect the beautiful light we had today. The Prunus is groaning with blossom which in turn means the air is positively alive with bees.
After a couple of years of disengagement with the garden my gardening mojo is well and truly back but slightly different. It has grown up, it is more mature and considered and better informed
My focus today was the very top left hand corner of the garden. As you can see some of the fencing is missing which is down to my neighbours. When they moved in they cut down all the trees and shrubs along the boundaries, which I can understand as it was so overgrown, but the trees and shrubs did hold up the fence which was collapsing from years of neglect by the previous owners. I think they plan to replace the fence soon but in the meantime I feel a little exposed when I am in this part of the garden – my privacy is important to me. I sensed my neighbours were out today so it seemed a good time to tackle this corner. It fits with my approach to getting a grip of the garden starting at the top and working my way down. This area used to be home to the compost bins which I removed last summer. I have planted it up with a number of shrubs which were either in pots on the patio or had to be moved to give other plants space.
I’m hoping that the range of shrubs: camellia, tree peony, hydrangeas will give round the year interest. I had added a few ferns and also a helleborus foetidus which was over growing a path. I also added narcissus and snowdrop bulbs back last autumn which put on a good display up to a week or so ago. Today, I weeded, pruned, removed some brambles and sycamore seedlings from the very top and added a couple of Acunthus mollis.
Just to the right of the area I worked on today is an area I started work on almost to the day last year. There used to be a woodchip path along the top of the garden but it led nowhere and I spent more time trying to keep it weeded then anything else. The wood edging had rotted and to be honest the path was becoming dangerous so last year I removed the wood edging and I have slowly but surely been digging up and removing the rubble that formed the base of the path. The area of bare soil in the photo above was the very last bit of the path which I finally removed last week. I can now use this space for some ferns, epimediums and hellebores which need moving. I am trying to create a tapestry of foliage to give interest all year round.
My new approach is beginning to show dividends elsewhere in the garden. Above is the top of the garden to the right where I removed the path last year. This area is awash with honesty (Lunaria annua) which seeds itself around the garden. I used to have a white variegated honesty but seem to have lost it over the past few years so I think I will try to find some more seeds and reintroduce it. I discovered that the Melianthus major above is also flowering like the one next to the shed which is really good.
Finally, I will leave you with the first tulips to open this year in the garden. They were in a selection pack of tulips and I think they are Tulip ‘Elegant Lady’ – I do like the softness of the colour and think I may try to add some more next year.
I have had a wonderful day today gardening for far more hours than any other day this year and I ache all over which is often a sign of a good day.
For more Six on Saturday posts visit the Propagator’s Blog.