Thursday, 25 June 2009
So we got the garden turfed and ended up with a nice new lawn, all full of sand where we had been told to cover the joins in the turf. It was hard to imagine that it would look nice but we persevered.
Daily watering for a few weeks and a bit of care to keep off the grass etc and we really have ended up with a very nice lawn. Lots of clover as the turf was meadow turf (and covered in sheep droppings!) but it has taken really well and it is now looking very green and healthy. We plan to have a really good go with weed killer at the end of the summer and chuck a whole load of grass seed down to see if we can tip the balance to more grass than clover!!
The patio in the corner got laid properly and has now become home to our little love seat, which was a wedding gift from some of my oldest and dearest friends.
I've also got a jasmine growing up the trellis you can see behind the bench seat :-)
I have got a little carried away with my flower beds since we finished the grass. As mentioned before, the plan was to have my herb garden plus one or two other small beds. Once the patio was done, it seemed right to put a couple of beds beside it so I got busy with digging. I had so many plants that had been given to me by my dad and I couldn't just let them go to waste. I was also talked into buying a honeysuckle as they were on offer locally. At this stage, we decided to change one of the new fence panels at the back for a trellis as the honeysuckle would need something to climb up. I will update the photo at some point to show the work we've done since :-)
Finally, the little bed at the corner of the decking and the one in the middle of the same side of the grass looked a little random as they were. So I joined them up to make a long curved bed. I must confess my buying sins again here as I nipped into town just after doing this and bought a few perennials to save myself some work later on ;-)
I really need to take a new photo of this bed actually as I seem to have *acquired* a few more plants for the bed now ;-) and it's looking a lot more colourful!!
The plan for this bed is to have plenty of smallish perennials as I don't want to have a high maintenance garden. There isn't a lot of point me trying to list what I've got in there as I have a terrible memory and I've already forgotten what most of them are! I do have some St John's Wort, a Fresia and a Peony all donated by daddy though.
There is more garden action planned in the next few months so watch this space :-D
Wednesday, 24 June 2009
Tuesday, 23 June 2009
When we moved here, I had a couple of small shrubs in terracotta pots that I've been trying to grow for about 4 years. They have never done all that well (the shame of it, how can it be this hard to grow a small conifer!!)
So off I trundled to Homebase and picked up half a dozen planters as they were on offer. This of course meant I needed a few plants and I decided on herbs. I already had a herb garden in place on one side of the garden, which was home to a few plants that my mum had given me plus one or two other bits that I had bought myself.
Strawberries suddenly seemed like the greatest idea in the world. The Beans (aka my twins....you'll get used to this nickname as I use it all the time) both love strawberries and it's always looked so nice in pictures to see a strawberry planter. I started googling planters and came up with a really nice looking one. This is what my lovely MIL has bought me as an early birthday present :-D
I can't remember if it had already arrived when I decided that it actually might be better to put herbs in it, but I ended up ordering something else for the 18 strawberry plants that I had accidently bought on another trip to Homebase (they have had an extraordinary amount of money from me in the last 4 months!).
So there I was with 2 lovely planters, one of which needed plants, so I hit the herbs again. That sounds so much more fun that it actually was ;-) I won't bore you with the details of every planter that I bought, but I seem to have an awful lot of herbs growing now.......
French Tarragon - 2 plants
Cinammon Basil - 2 plants
Sweet Basil - 2 plants
Another Basil that is nameless
3 other Chamomile plants
2 other nameless Thyme plants (I could find out but that is so much work!)
Sage - another nameless one
Winter Savory - 2 plants
I think that's it for the herbs!!
The edibles came about by accident really. One of my lovely neighbours is quite the garden enthusiast and does a lot of growing. He offered me 5 tomato plants and I wasn't in a hurry to turn him down. These are now tucked in a nice sunny corner of the decking and doing very nicely. I think I have around 12 tomatoes coming at the moment :-)
Next came the Cayenne Pepper plant, again a gift from my neighbour. We'd been chatting about my tomatoes & strawberries and I was telling him how satisfying I was finding it actually seeing stuff growing.
I trekked over to a local big garden centre on Monday this week as I have suddenly found myself with an urge to grow more. Nothing was in stock at Homebase so a garden centre seemed like a better bet and I came home with 3 lovely healthy looking cucumber plants that have now taken up residence in a grobag. The courgettes were an Ebay buy, green bush variety if I remember rightly. They haven't arrived yet but hopefully will be here on Friday. I have planted some courgette seeds but I was very late with them so I am not expecting too much.
I'm irrationally excited about the crops I do have coming already and can't wait to see some action from the new plants. Does that make me sound as tragic as I think it does??
I've already told Gi that I need a vegetable patch!! The plan is to dig up the 2 irking great conifers in the corner of the garden, at the end of the summer. They are just in the way and I don't like them anyway, scruffy looking things! I'd like to put in 1 or 2 raised beds and grow more crops. I don't think he cares what I grow providing he doesn't have to tend the beds. I have also put a greenhouse on my list for Santa this year, so I'm planning to be a very good girl for the rest of the year, lol!
I'll be taking progress shots of my crops, yes, I really am that sad........ and I will update if I get anything else to grow!
As you can see, it extends almost the full length of the house and is HUUUGE! The sun awnings were courtesy of a little flutter that paid off ;-)
Once the decking was done, the obsession started in earnest!
The next project I decided on was that we should returf the garden. In it's pre-us state, the lawn was really uneven and patchy, plus with the concrete path that you can just see in the corner of the picture, we really didn't have much choice if we wanted a nice lawn.
Cue us deciding that we didn't need to hire any expensive equipment.......I mean, how hard could it be to dig up 100 square metres of turf right?? Ummmm, bloody hard!! Backbreakingly hard in fact. Still, it saved us £100 so it was worth it of course.......NOT!! Two or three days of blood (literally in my case after nearly taking my foot off with a spade), sweat (copious amounts thereof) and tears (well, maybe not the tears but the rest is true) we had a mud lawn!
The following morning, we had a lorry load of turf delivered and then set about laying them over the mud......