I bought this little vase set to display some of my favourite bits and bobs from the garden and remind myself to keep getting out there. It is no secret that my love of gardening comes and goes. Although, after finally spending 3 weekends in a row at home, I think I am cracking the garden. My Dad who has always been my guide, is spending more time at his own allotment, which has forced me to take control. I am feeling very grown up, a little achey, and there is definitely a slightly smug feeling about the engrained dirt in my my hands as I sit here typing.
Over the bank holiday we removed some long abandoned old plastic toys from the decking, (bar the football net) and now it makes the perfect place to lounge. My next project is mowing the lawn, but cut me some slack, I have been busy on other projects.
The kids now have an old sandpit each to use as a raised bed for their own gardening therapy times. They’ve planted peas and wild flowers so far in one and dug holes and made mud pies in the other. We made a little mud kitchen corner, with a plank and some old bricks – best thing ever in their book!
I love the garden at this time of year, when we moved in my Dad carefully uncovered what was already planted and added lots of herbs and bee attracting plants. I have gradually succumbed to natural looking, wild flowers and plants, after watching Chelsea Flower Show last night, I have come to the conclusion that’s my favourite style too. I did some weeding last weekend and rescued the chives, sadly the bluebells are dying back.
May is a magical time, the peonies always shoot up, it is is like they know it is my birthday on Friday.
And the jasmine, honeysuckle, rose and clematis over the wall in the yard area start to climb and take it in turns to bloom.
The Lily of the Valley are at their finest this month too, even after a heaving beating from the rain.
After threatening to do this for years, I finally dug a wide border along the hedge, I was fed up of the garden feeling lop sided, and of looking at the concrete slab path. This is a mix of plants I bought at a wildflower farm and those I rehomed which had seeded themselves and attempted to sprout in the wrong place – buddhlia and fennel are forever doing this. I might regret the buddhlia, knowing how fast it can grow, but right now we need shade. I even used some compost and fertlisier to give them a head start in this neglected strip of land. Gardening therapy levels were high after all the digging was done!
I am sad to see the end of the bluebells and the cowslips, but it is always exciting to see something you wouldn’t expect in a suburban garden, makes me feel like I am in a country wood.
I bought some succulents, and planted them in a wall, just as an experiment. I love how this purple flowering climber has taken root, and I am encouraging it to take over the whole wall.
The kids enjoyed planting some more in old tins, which look a bit bare currently – we want to paint them at some point, to add some colour. Garden projects and ideas are never ending!
My favourite is the fennel – we are always amazed by how fast it grows into a giant plant, up to 2.5m high, with stunning antenna like fronds. My kids love to eat the aniseed flavoured seeds like sweets. Or the alpine strawberries, which have just spread everywhere now, covering neglected patches of border with a supply of snacks.