We are already into mid July and I realised that I had not posted a garden update for two months plus I did start to redraw a more detailed plan of the garden with the intention of posting that also but it is still lying in the 'to be finished' file. Anyway I have taken a few pictures over the past few weeks and hopefully they will convey something of the layout, for those of my readers that may be interested (Cheryl, Jenny, Jan, and Shirleyanne come to mind), but please don't beat me up if I haven't mentioned you by name!
Immediately outside the back door is a roofed patio (approx 20' x 10') enclosed on both sides. On the left by our neighbours fence and on the right is next doors extention where Clematis Cezanne, a dwarf variety, sits in a small trough on a low wall and climbs just about two feet covered in blooms. Unfortunately due to the lack of water while we were away on holiday it now looks a little sorry for itself! I didn't photograph the patio with its old wooded bench with seats as the area is currently being used to store everything we can't find a home for somewhere else!
Stepping down onto the garden path with a garden shed on the left behind which the water butt is now nearly camouflaged by one of the ferns surrounded by Geraniun nodsum and Dicentra 'Stuart Boothman'. The Blue Tit nest box is situated above the water butt and I opened it up a few days ago to find one deceased juvenile left behind but at least the other fledglings have been visiting the feeders quite regularly. Alchemilla mollis and Hellebores have self seeded in every conceivable crack either side of the path. On the right is our tiny lawn with a dry shingle river bed leading to a sunken water fountain now completely overshadowed by spreading Geraniums. Sisyrinchium striatum 'Aunt May' planted in the shingle is just going over and the clump for some reason is slowly reducing in size year by year so I'm not sure if it will survive another winter.
The 'tear-drop' shaped lawn is shaded in the early morning so a pleasant spot to sit with Roses (Mme. Alfred Carriere and Compassion) seeking out the sunshine high above the fence plus a Jasmine providing some gentle fragrance. Clematis montana flowers very early and then is followed by Clematis texensis 'Pagoda' with its small purple-pink nodding blooms. The large flowered blue Clematis (name long forgotten hangs onto the ivy that smothers the clothes line post and just starting to errupt is the much darker Clematis 'Polish Spirit' that always clambers high up into the Prunus and the Hawthorn.
N.B. This is the only part of the garden that was actually planned. The original design and planting scheme was done by a work colleague way back in 1997. It was one of her first commissions and she is now a highly respected Horticultural Advisor, writer and garden designer. I didn't follow the plan exactly and needless to say much of the original planting has changed as I generally allow the plants to decide who wants to be where.
Behind the water feature is an Ulmus parvifolia 'Geisha'. Exceptionally slow growing with tiny small green/grey leaves edged white. I have just checked that it prefers sun to light shade so perhaps it needs to be moved as it is only growing in one direction!
Behind the lawn the upright Prunus and particularly the ever spreading Hawthorn (Cretaegus laevigata 'Plena') now cast shade over what was originally a sunny border and I now need to rethink some of the planting. On the fringes are Pittosporum 'Tom Thumb', various Geraniums, Hibiscus 'Hamabo' just starting to flower and a large clump of Echinops 'Taplan Blue' which the bees just adore.
A short stemmed white Lilium in a pot stands at the beginning of a small path....to be continued....FAB.