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Author Topic: Making the Best of It... (Was 'Blog from an Untidy Garden')  (Read 51741 times)

tonyg

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Making the Best of It... (Was 'Blog from an Untidy Garden')
« on: March 14, 2010, 10:29:20 PM »
A while ago a forumist suggested I show more of my garden.  At lectures people occasionally ask to come and see the garden.  The truth is far from the pretty pictures I usually show.  However I have decided to start a thread to show you what it is really like - the 'Lost Garden of Hellesdon' as I sometimes call it!

We moved here 18 years ago inheriting an old garden with clematis, roses and bizarrely (since we bought in November when they were dormant) many Crocus tommasinianus :).  A disused vegetable plot and several sick fruit trees.  For the first 5 years I made good progress with raised beds for alpines, shrub/herbaceous borders and vegetable patch.  Then we had Ruth and later Amy ... everything went into reverse in the garden!  Nature has gradually reclaimed its own.  Some areas still have interesting plantings but all is weedy, nettles and brambles galore.  The cheap and immature shrubs (notably eleagnus) rampaged, blocking out a lot of light.

The garden faces South and the soil is light and very sandy.  Drainage is extremely fast, we never get a puddle.  The soil is therefore poor and hungry and suits some plants much better than others.

To start here are some winter shots.  I like the snow, my garden looks as good as anyones when well covered ;)
A view from down the garden
The Greenhouse
The Spring Crocus Frame
Cyclamen coum seedlings

angie

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2010, 10:45:10 PM »
Tony I am looking forward to your next posting I always like to see and hear about other members gardens. Its nice to see how the garden has developed over time and find out what challenges there was. Your spring crocus frame looks interesting. Cant wait to see more.
Angie :)



Angie T.
....just outside Aberdeen in North East Scotland

tonyg

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #2 on: March 14, 2010, 11:27:29 PM »
I will to get help from a friend with a slide scanner for the archive shots ... but it's not going to happen just yet! 

Hope to share plants, plantings and observations here.  You'll see the garden, warts and all, and hopefully see it change for the better over time.  Maybe the commitment on here will increase my commitment out there :D

And, always glad of help, I may get a few bits of useful advice along the way!

mark smyth

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #3 on: March 14, 2010, 11:50:38 PM »
I'm agreeing to more people coming for a look at my garden which has made me get the place in order. More visitors tomorrow, Tuesday and Friday.
Antrim, Northern Ireland Z8
www.snowdropinfo.com / www.marksgardenplants.com / www.saveourswifts.co.uk

When the swifts arrive empty the green house

All photos taken with a Canon 900T and 230

Lesley Cox

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2010, 12:09:53 AM »
I am looking forward to seeing your garden Tony, because - unless you are being falsely modest - it sounds much like my own. Intentions are always of the best but the reality is far from ideal. I have two weeks holiday from work starting on Thursday and I intend to spend it all in the garden, firstly with a weed eater than some Roundup in selected places and then, probably, nursing a bad back. Unless the weather defeats me of course. We may get the solid rain I've been begging for, for weeks. ???
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

Luc Gilgemyn

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2010, 09:46:55 AM »
Good idea Tony !!
You know we're all a very curious lot..  ;D ;D so we want to know all about what goes on in other peoples gardens.
I'm sure we will be learning from it !
Luc Gilgemyn
Harelbeke - Belgium

David Nicholson

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2010, 11:24:57 AM »
I'm pretty good on intentions and woefully short on action.
David Nicholson
in Devon, UK  Zone 9b
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Ragged Robin

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #7 on: March 15, 2010, 12:35:00 PM »
Tony, I'm delighted to see your working garden, a real garden warts and all, which is what makes it so interesting  ;)  We all strive to grow plants well but Mother Nature has a way of putting us in our place and so we have to please her and 'go with the flow' to a degree out in the open  :)  Even so, your expertise and knowledge is a fount that would be wonderful to share and therefore my gaze is towards the 'nerve centre' from where you can toss crumbs any time you like  ;D
Valais, Switzerland - 1,200 metres - Continental climate - rocks and moraine

ChrisB

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #8 on: March 15, 2010, 01:09:08 PM »
This thread will be top of my reading list.  We all have gardens that need attention, mine more than most at the moment.  People always think that plant enthusiasts will have nice looking gardens, but so often it just isn't true.  I'd like to get my garden ship shape, but I fear that, if I do, I'll want to sell up and move to another, because if a garden is perfect, it just isn't a garden really.  Looking forward to more Tony.
Chris Boulby
Northumberland, England

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2010, 07:35:43 PM »
Can't wait to see more pics of your gardens, Tony.
Am sure to get a few good ideas  ;D

Btw, I see washing on the line, how do you manage to hold pegs with gloved hands?
People around here hang washing out whenever there is sun, even in winter. Can't see how they can hold pegs when it is -20C out.
Can't see how clothes would get dry. ( not to mention the smoke, most people around here have wood burning furnaces)

My clothesline gets stored during winter, I wouldn't be able to reach it through the snowdrifts.

Helen Poirier, New Brunswick, Canada-Zone 4b

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #10 on: March 15, 2010, 08:19:46 PM »
Tony, you've no idea how good it makes me feel to know I'm not the only gardener who never quite gets on top of everything at the same time. Now I can stop feeling guilty about taking Saturdays off to go to shows!

David Shaw

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #11 on: March 15, 2010, 08:37:13 PM »
I'm about to start on last summers weeding and tidying - or is it the summers before? ???
David Shaw, Forres, Moray, Scotland

tonyg

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #12 on: March 15, 2010, 08:40:55 PM »
I'm having doubts ... ???  All this interest and I've hardly started!

David - you're only a year or two behind??  Ruth is now 12 ..... need I say more?

Martin R - 'never quite gets on top of things' ... I'd settle for that.  I feel like I never got started.

Helen - The idea had bee for freeze-dried washing the day before ... but it snowed while our backs were turned.

Robin - I'm reminded of an old joke.  A man is building a compost heap in his neglected garden, the neighbour hangs over the fence. 
Man: "I think its important to have a good compost heap."
Neighbour, looking across the garden: "You've got a compost heap, what you need is a garden!"
I've got plenty of warts - hope I can find a few crumbs for you ;)

Lesley - no false modesty.  You know what they say about the camera never lies ... just wait for the pics when the snow has melted :P

Angie - Its gonna be more about how the garden will develop ... and even then it will be slowly ::)

angie

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #13 on: March 15, 2010, 08:51:18 PM »
Tony.. slowly is fine with me and its will just be nice to see your work in progress.
Angie :)
Angie T.
....just outside Aberdeen in North East Scotland

tonyg

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Re: Blog from an Untidy Garden
« Reply #14 on: March 15, 2010, 10:05:47 PM »
OK time to bare all, well not quite all (too depressing!)  At least lets melt the snow and see what it hides.

More washing out and the girls garden toys have moved about.  The play house was the cat house winter 2008/9 but he has won Jacinta over and is now allowed to sleep indoors (currently on Ruths bed.)  

The garden is about 90ft x 35ft, the shot looking towards the house is taked from about 60ft away.  The spring crocus frame is showing its age, a Heath Robinson combination of bits from other peoples discarded secondary glazing, it does the job .... just.  It's not what you've got but what you do with it that matters - now where did I hear that before :o

The frost damaged pot has been outside for years.  It was still whole when the snowy pictures were taken.  This has been the harshest winter since we have been here.  The Primula marginata in it has been used for propagation material for a few years.  I think it will have to be planted out now ... if I can find a space for it.

Sacrilege to say it but Snowdrops are better garden plants than the fleeting jewels that are crocuses here.  The two shots were taken over a month apart.  
« Last Edit: March 16, 2010, 08:12:01 AM by tonyg »

 


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