Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Some pictures of the progress

Veg patch and orchard beyond
Veg patch coming to life

Lifting turf off new border, hard work!
Could add some more photos, but my internet speeds so slow it takes ages. !!!

Under the new border I have found a pile of builders hardcore, one wheelbarrow full so far. It is alos as stony as the other side with about a metre dug over (2.5m wde bed)  and 3 trugs of big stones pulled out.

We spent sunday chicken and dog proofing the hedge. Plugging all the gaps with chicken wire. The hedge will be one side of the chicken run that is getting fencing in tomorrow. The chickens have wrecked the little bit of ground they have been confined to over the last few weeks. They go crazy for a square of turf, and they pace the boundary of the enclosure when they see me digging, desperate to get to the worms they just know I am digging up for them.

Today I have potted on the courgettes and some Cosmos. There is no sign of life in the Verbena seeds I sowed around the same time, must be a bad lot. Will give it one more try. We have also erected our mini greenhouse, as housing for the pots taking over the conservatory.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Seed sowing continues....

First sowing of peas are now done 'Kelveden Wonder', have also sowed Parnsip 'Gladiator' and a little edge of chives all around the currant bed. Second sowings of various lettuces, carrots, spinach and radishes. Everything has started germinating except for the garlic, there is no sign of life at all!

The weather was great on Friday and I could not resist lifting a bit more turf to extend the flower border. I still have loads of pots of perennial which have to find a home somewhere. I managed to lift about 4.5m2 of area and dig it over. I did a rough planting plan to include what is in so far and made a little list of what I want further down the border, shrub wise.
Yesterday we took the kids to Chester Zoo and visited a friend who has just moved down to rural Cheshire. He has a big garden project of his own to tackle and I am hoping will let me help him at some point.  On the way home we popped into Blue bell gardens and nursery and I had a bit of a spending spree, buying up some damp loving plants including Ligularia 'The Rocket', Rodgersia 'Chocolate Wings' and Rheum palmatum. The children helped me plant them up this evening with some Hosta ' Blue Angel',  I think and Iris 'Gerald Darby'.

Monday, 9 April 2012


Easter Sunday is not a time for relaxing! Yesterday morning hubby and I hid eggs the woods for the children to find. However he had to first remove a dead bird from said woods as the youngest refused to enter the woods until the 'dead thing' had gone. She did offer to find daddy big gloves for the operation in case he got the germs!  The girls then spent a happy half hour on the hunt. However as the older one is wise to the ways of the egg hunt, she had asked me to count them, so they knew if they were all found. Anyway one still remains missing, much to the dismay of the oldest, who cannot understand why her mum cannot remember the exact location of the missing egg!!!
The afternoon was spend cutting the grass, well hubby cut while I edged and hoed off the weeds germinating under the new hedge.
The bareroot hornbeam hedge has burst into life. I have a couple of plants that had their heads chopped off by the hare, but they are coming lower down. I will see how they get on growing this season, and if necessary buy a couple to replace them over winter.

The friend came good with the leaf mold and left 8 bags for us, and lovely stuff it was too. I spread most of it around our one flower border, and it looks great. Well it did before the chickens escaped earlier today and headed straight for it. They had a good old scratch about sending the mulch in all directions. They also ripped the new leaves of an acanthus to shreds, who knew acanthus was irresistable to chickens! Luckily we noticed they had escaped before they found the new shoots in the veg bed!

Little inspection of the orchard trees and all seem to have life in them, and a couple of the apple trees have flower buds on them, so we may have a few apples this year?!

We popped up to Scotland for a few days ago and have brought back some snowdrops from the mother in law's garden. We have put them in the shrub under the large hedge that borders the garden. Currently the planting under here consists of nettles, dock, brambles and long grass.  I do not mind a 'wild' look but there are limits. Therefore over the year I am going to tackle some of the more persistant weeds here. Hubby wants daffs, snowdrops and primroses next spring, a much nicer look than the dead grass and weeds this spring!

Weather permitting today we will be pea sowing, its currently raining. I cannot see Scotland out of the window at the moment, this means the weather is set in for a while!!