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Posts Tagged ‘soil’


On Friday I left for the garden straight from work, and as I was walking from the bus to the summerhouse I suddenly noticed something…

The woodland anemones are beginning to bloom. It’s still just a few dots of white on the forest floor, but soon it will be a veritable carpet. I will make sure to take a proper walk in the forest the next time I go up there!

I arrived in the garden just in time to have a couple of hours of daylight left to enjoy the garden before retreating inside to a warm fire and a Scottish coffee (as they say in Scotland, it’s like an Irish coffee, just with better whiskey).

I do enjoy the calm and quiet of sitting in front of a warm fire in a small wooden house with no TV, no people, no nothing. Just me, being there in the moment and feeling my mind de-clutter itself.

Mind you, that was the Friday evening. Saturday I was hi-jacked by one of the neighbours who seemed to be in a mood for sitting around a fire with a few too many beers, so that’s what we did from the afternoon into the late hours. The weather was excellent on Saturday; warm sunny spells interspersed with  mild snow showers.

imageWhile I wasn’t being laddish around a fire I did get something done. The vegetable beds are now in decent shape for sowing, perhaps on Easter Monday, perhaps later. (The forecast threatens with freezing nights down to minus 5C, so I have to wait for the temperatures to rise a bit.)

I think I still want to work in a bit more compost in the vegetable beds, both to lighten the soil and to bulk up the volume a bit.

There will be peas and beans in these two beds, like there was last year, but given that a great portion of the soil has been replaced I think it will be okay. And under the beans I will try my luck with some curly kale and some kohlrabi. And marigolds, of course, for what would a vegetable garden be without marigolds?

I think this will be an all right little vegetable garden.

I’ll finish off with a small – but significant – visitor to the garden; the first ladybug sighting of the season! These little fellows are always welcome in the garden!

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Feeling Lazy


It seems like I haven’t done a thing all weekend. Well, of course not QUITE, but you know how one can get in a self-deprecating mood from time to time. When I look at that picture it really doesn’t seem like much of a result.

Still, the border IS larger than it appears in the picture, and though I didn’t get around to digging in the compost and create a plantable area, at least I can be glad I changed my plan and enlarged the area of the border. I suspect it might actually need to be even bigger, but I just won’t have time for that next weekend and I also think it’s probably important that I finish it in this size, dig in the compost and gain a sense of achievement from it. Then I can always do a second spurt of digging in April.

I’ve discovered that the narrow border in front of the covered terrace actually wraps around it, so about 4 inches below the lawn there is an edging of concrete paving stones. It makes it more fiddly to dig near the wall, but on the other hand they make a nice marker for how far in towards the terrace I want to dig deep; the last thing I’d want would be to unsettle the paving of the terrace, and this old edging gives me a nice guideline.

(The clematis is planted just inside the edging, by sheer luck, and it will be preserved. I decided to sacrifice a perennial sweet pea, though, as it was just impossible to disentangle it from the weedy grass around it. Also, it wasn’t very scented, so I will sow some annual sweet peas instead with a headier scent.)

Most of the turf was “recycled” and used to beef up the embankment towards the stream at the back. (And also, on a more cosmetic level, covering up the piles of old twigs and branches that were lying there as well as some of the lumps of pure clay that were dug up when we had the drainage installed. I will fill in the gaps between the turf “blocks”, and that should make it look a bit tidier. )

This one is a bit of a cheat, since I bought this on Thursday. A blue anemone that was just too pretty to resist. I planted it out in the hedgerow, which should pretty much replicate the natural environment it’s suited for; light in spring, then heavy shade once the leaves appear on the trees.

This one looks rather autumnal, yet gloriously so, I think. It’s a mahogany that had made it’s way out into the forest, and as it is not a native plant here I pulled it up and stuck it in a plastic container in the Courtyard. If you look carefully at the centre of the leaves you can see the yellow flower buds have made an appearance, and I think they will look spectacular against the dark foliage.

In time it might end up as a feature plant in the shady (and also not created yet) Fern Patch – or perhaps as undergrowth under the trees towards the road.

Right in the centre of this picture there is a small, red tip making its way out of the soil… The peonies are shooting, and it will be exciting to see if we get any flowers this year. (Though odds are we will have to wait another year, yet you never know…)

And that’s it for now. I’m going up there again Friday evening and hope to finish the Sunny Border in some form before I have to head back to town Saturday night for a birthday party.

(And typing up this entry made me feel like – perhaps – I have managed to get SOME work done over the weekend.)

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