Wow… what happens to the time, I say every day that I am going to achieve this, this and this, but the list never seems to get any smaller and the day goes by. (I need to address this life time issue). So sorry guys for such a long time between posts. Anyhoo…
We have been busy trying to finish the house off, having lots of people to stay, which is great as they make a house a home with the memories, and we have been playing in the garden. Not sure where to start with the update, but outside seems as good a place as any.
You may remember that my Handy Husband created a lovely potting shed for me. He knows the way to my heart. Well this year as we are starting to landscape the garden he increased the number of raised beds for me too. I found that last year there just wasn’t enough space for all the things I wanted to grow. Below is how it used to look before the upgrade.
So we added in two more raised beds and also reused some low fence panels that we had salvaged from the garden before we started deconstruction. They work well to break up the spaces between where we want to put our patio and the more functional space of the vegetable garden. Also the low fence will work well as support for a couple of roses that i want to train along the length of it.
We gravelled an area to the side of the potting shed, mainly because we didn’t want to use up all the reclaimed bricks, but also to add in a change of surface texture to add interest. I’ve put here my tin bath and made a pond again. Early stages with the pond, but it will eventually look good. Plus its great for the birds to have somewhere to drink water and bathe in.
The inside of the potting shed is also looking very productive. I’ve been busy sowing seeds and potting on seedlings. I added more shelving in here as well.
So the sun is shining and I need to get out and potter. Hope you have a good weekend.
I hope you are comfortable and have a nice cup of earl grey tea to hand, cos this is going to be a long post as I have lots to tell you.
Firstly the Handy Husband has been very busy putting down a new path to his
man cave garden shed. We got a great deal on some concrete pavers from B&Q at the trade counter, for about £2 which is a total bargain. We’re mixing them in with the reclaimed bricks from the house. We don’t have quite enough of the bricks to make all the paths that we want to, so by mixing them in with the concrete pavers perhaps we will have enough.
I also dug over the border (well half the border before my back got too stiff – man! that border is long!) and planted some new plants that I bought this morning from Garden Beauty who were having a plant sale. It’s great being able to work in the garden and make it our own while the house is being renovated. It makes it feel more like ours.
My girlie was also very busy in the garden. I am sure you can see exactly what we look like from her garden portraits!
Moving onto the house, the roof is taking shape, the carpenters have been having taking their time and getting it right. It hasn’t been easy for them as the drawings from the Architects aren’t all that good – but that’s another story I won’t bore you with. Still they are managing and the results are great. If you look down the length of the roof, all the rafters are perfectly inline. That’s a skill. (The
perfectionist Handy Husband is suitably impressed).
It will only be another couple of weeks before they start to put the tiles on – SO exciting – a roof!
Downstairs is moving on too, all the rooms have been joisted out and battens (green ones) put in place to support the insulation. They will be putting pipes and wires in soon (I hope) for first fix.
It has been great realising the spaces as they take shape, and they are just as I imagined (phew!) Well sorry for very long post, I hope your tea didn’t go cold!
Have a great weekend
Well the builders are at last building, rather than knocking down, which is great! I thought that you would like to see what they have been doing.
This is the utility room being rebuilt, you can see where they have written ‘door’ on the wall, that’s where our new back door is going.
and this is start of the new downstairs bedroom and ensuite.
Also I thought that I would show you how amazing my potting shed is now. I have the best Handy Husband a girl could want.
Have a great weekend
It didn’t rain yesterday, yay, and so I went in the garden to do a bit of tidying up. I haven’t been out there for one reason or another for months. The rain has made everything very soggy and muddy, and it’s cold and I seem to be able to find other things to do rather than get out there.
But I’m so glad I did! The sun almost shone and with five layers on it was fairly warm… But oh how wonderful to see that baby shoots are poking their heads up above the dead leaves. The shoots are the freshest green and look so clean and pure it brings joy to my heart. (sorry getting quite over the top there) It’s just that they look so lovely and I want the nice weather to come back and I’m just so fed up of the rain.
Enough chat – here they are.
This plant was given to me by my lovely friend Lucy. She is the font of all knowledge on plants and gardening. It has been doing very well in the shady corner of a North facing border in quite heavy clay. The perfect architectural plant, with big glossy leaves.
This clematis is again on the north side of a fence – and as with all clematis likes to have it’s feet in the shade and it’s head in the sun. I had about a dozen very showy flowers on it last year, and it seems to be very happy, so maybe it will give me more this summer. They are almost pure white and about 5 inches in diameter with very pretty reddish centres. The best thing about it though is the deer don’t eat it! YAY.
These sedum are again from my lovely friend Lucy (yes she has single handedly stocked much of my garden) I did have them out in the front, but the pesky deer just munched them to the ground and especially the flowers (grrr) but I moved them to the back garden which is protected by a very high fence and so far the deer haven’t been in there. Not that I am obsessed about the deer (small twitch in left eye) but I can’t afford to feed them plants from the nursery, they could at least eat the weeds – that would be more useful. But I digress, these sedum are great doers. They look great when just in leaves, the flowers last for ever and the butterflies and bees love them.
These large Ox eye daisies are coming on well too. Once I cut down last year’s stalks they looked much prettier.
And finally the rhubarb. I would love to get a couple of those terracotta forcing pots for the rhubarb.
I hope you got out and about this weekend and dodged the rain.
Well the garden was looking very much unloved (top left photo), mainly because the weather has been really bad for a while and I just haven’t had the time/inclination to be outside. So this weekend the weather man promised me it would be dry. Well it was dry and although the photos don’t really show it, the sun did try to shine.
Autumn is one of my best times of the year, the colours are great, the smells are fab and I do love wearing my wellies. There is a tree on the other side of the fence at the bottom of our garden and it has been slowly turning a wonderful shade of yellow. It’s so yellow, in fact, that sometimes I think the sun is shining.
We spent a good couple of hours clearing out my borders of the leaves, dead heading nad the old summer flowers. The nasturtiums I planted last year to fill in the bare ground and fence have all self seeded again and were quite thuggishly crawling over everything else. I know that with the first frost (which isn’t that far away) they will become mush, so it felt great to yank out those bruisers, even though they still had a few flowers left on them.
I did leave as many of the seed heads as I could for the little birds, and also for the texture they bring to the borders. I cleaned out the pots, finally putting the dahlias that bloomed their socks off over the summer, onto the compost heap. I will have to pop to the nursery to find some interesting winter colour for the deck.
The handy husband spent some time on his lawn, first cutting it, then scarifying it with a sturdy rake and finally sweeping up the thatch. It did look very nice and well tended afterwards. We eventually took three large builders bags full of leaves and dead stuff to the tip. I have tried to compost leaves before, but they do take a very long time, and I have never found it to be that successful. They compost the best when they are cut up with the lawn clippings, but large amounts of just leaves don’t rot that well in a compost bin.
Anyway, I hope you all had a good weekend outside, and felt productive. I thought I would leave you with a photo of this cheeky chap on one of our trees!
Well today the rain is falling and has done so since about 10 this morning. It is now 7 in the evening and it is pitch black outside, so I guess winter is well on its way. Boo! I did manage however to get out into my garden for a couple of hours yesterday and it was wonderful. Sheltered and sunny and it had that lovely crisp autumn feel about the air. The earth was smelling great, that heady aroma of rotting vegetation and leaves, and my friend the robin was hopping around in the holes I was digging.
I took a few photos of the last few blooms in the garden at the moment. They all seem to have that faded glamour of autumn about them. As though they know they don’t have to compete with the fashionistas of summer. I particularly like the hydrangea panniculata – the faded green with a tinge of pink around the edges, and of course the salvias at the moment are beautiful.
These were the last of my beetroots from my little raised beds.
My back yard makeover was long overdue. We have a slice of garden at the back of our house, and it was in danger of turning into a dumping ground for stuff. We had left over builders materials, broken pots, sad plants and so on. So I thought that I would give it a bit of a lift.
So I got to with the left over paving bricks we had from the build and made a random pattern for a little patio. I didn’t really do it properly, with all the cement and hardcore etc etc, and the Handy Husband didn’t really approve, but I figured that it wasn’t going to be a high traffic area so it didn’t need to be super solid. And I quite like the higgledy piggledy effect.
So this is the finished item. The little iron chair came from my mom’s and the old staging is now displaying my new herb garden. How nice to be able to nip outside for the freshest of ingredients!