This week has been a bit of an odd one – after the four-day weekend for Easter, I had two days’ leave while family visited, and J has had the whole week off as he’s between jobs. So while I was back at work on Thursday and Friday, he was busy doing things in the back garden. The patio furniture has been sanded down and repainted, and he made a major change to the flower beds either side of the concrete path. Can you spot it? (I didn’t, at first):
In fairness, it really doesn’t leap out at you. Since we’ve been here, the edge of the bed against the fence has been formed by a couple of pieces of timber. They did their job, but we were never very happy with the look of them. So J took them out and replaced them with the various kerbs and edging slabs we had been using over the last few years, but which had come free after the recent redesign. The effect is much neater and they look like they’ve always been there. It did mean that a few plants had to move to the new bed to create a bit of space for the slabs, but that’s no hardship.
He also cut back a few things that were going mad or needed a haircut, including a santolina and a perennial wallflower. So the back garden is looking a lot neater. Plus we have replaced all the little solar lamps with a new set, as most of them had stopped working and even replacing batteries wasn’t helping. Unfortunately the light was terrible for photos yesterday but I did my best.
It’s all happening in the back garden, things seem to be (mostly) happy.
So yesterday we decided to have a bit of a go at the front garden, which was similarly in need of a tidy up. We had also decided to dig out the stump of the potentilla – it was starting to put out a few leaves but so much of it was woody and dead, and we wanted to replace it with something evergreen. We had a skimmia in a pot that was starting to need planting out, so taking out the potentilla made a space for it. The santolinas at the front also got a good trim, as did the salvias and the artemisia (I saved a few bits of artemisia for cuttings, but I have had no luck at all with cuttings recently so we’ll see.) We also planted out several other things that have been hanging around in pots for far too long – two dwarf buddleias, a scabious, some lilyturf and several lychnis.
We are going to have a rethink about the beds nearest the house as the soil has become very compacted and seems damper and clayier than elsewhere. It may be that we need to lift everything that can be lifted, dig in some grit and compost, then replant. Or it may be that we go for things that like damp shade. Mum has given me some bergenia from her garden so that might be an option.
So the bed against the wall looks like this:
And looking from the road you see this:
The skimmia in its new home:
The smaller photinia has been putting on lots of new growth, which is good – the bright red looks lovely against the stone wall.
Overnight we had some rain so I took the opportunity to get a few pictures this morning attempting to show raindrops on various leaves, with varying degrees of success.
Also managed a couple of snaps of Mr Blackbird getting his breakfast.
Getting there. Definitely.