Saturday, 23 April 2011

23.04. My gardens

Today has been another glorious day, I know I keep repeating myself – but honestly, it was 28 degrees at 3 pm! I have got quite a lot done today, mostly in my new garden next door, with staining the log rolls for the second bed, a slow process which has to be repeated several times after the logrolls are in the ground to make them last as long as possible.

Here is as far as I have got by today; both beds are completed with logrolls standing proudly. The next step is to fill compost into the beds to improve the soil quality a bit and then lay weed liner into the beds and to the path. On top of the weed liner I am having chopped bark in the beds and pea gravel on the path. The tub in the centre of the path is just working as a space holder at the moment, it is actually heading for the bin after this, but I will be looking for a wooden planter to have here, one I can stain in the same dark brown colour as the fence and the logrolls. This project has moved in a rather slow pace, but I am getting there, eventually!

And I have done a bit of work to the fence between my garden and the new garden; lifting up one fence panel and just resting it on the next panel didn’t work that well...it kept rattling in the wind and I could hear it at night as my bedroom is facing the garden. So I decided to make a more permanent solution, basically cutting off one third of the fence and make an opening. Once the pea gravel is in place on the path, it will come almost level with the bricks I have placed in the opening. If at one point in the future a tenant in the house wants to take care of the garden or doesn’t want me wandering around in their garden taking care of the plants, all which is needed is to buy one new panel and slip it into the space. This solution is the best I can do on a non-existent budget, although I would have liked a proper gate. Maybe at a later stage...

OK, ready for an update from my garden? There are so many things happening at the moment, I feel there is something new every day. But there are also plants that are coming to an end already; the camellia is almost finished flowering and will be ready for its yearly pruning next week or so. The Lily of the Valleys has just started flowering, a carpet of bright green leaves and tiny white nodding bells that smells absolutely gorgeous. They last quite a long time, being on the most shady side of the garden, and after the flowers comes the berries – bright orange! If you have never seen the berries from the Lily of the Valleys, watch this space...but you will have to wait until September/October – that’s how long it takes the berries to develop :-)

Do you remember a post where I wrote about my Acer palmatum ‘Garnet’? I took photos of the flowers, which I had never had on this tree before. I promised you an update photo once the leaves on the tree had come out completely. This is what it looks like now, all the leaves are completely out and it looks really great with the dark red colour which this particular Acer has all the time, not just in the autumn.

And what about the flowers that was on this Acer? Well, they are mostly gone, and in their place these seeds have developed instead! They look just like any other Acer seeds you can find in the street, just smaller of course – this is a very small variety of a large group of trees called Acers. But there are lots of seeds, possibly more than a hundred, and these seeds will eventually develop into red berries, which I also never have seen...can’t wait to see that! Just think of this: every one of these tiny seeds can be a new little tree like mine if I plant them – in about 20 years or so...I will have to try to plant some of them, just to see if I can get them to germinate. Some tree seeds are really difficult; they require several cold winters to just lie dormant before they can start the process of germination. In that space of time, the seed can die of lack of water, or get too much water and therefore rot before nothing happen at all. But I am not one for not trying just because it might be difficult!

I cut my roses every year in March, and they all get a hard prune almost down to base. That means the only time of the year I don’t have roses is when they grow up again after the pruning. Even in January, when we had hard frost, all my roses were flowering. Depending on the weather and temperature, it can take 2-3 months for them to grow up again, this year I think it is a record, as the first rose is already out :-) It was the ‘Peace’ that won this year, a lovely rose that looks pink-peach at first and more yellow when completely sprung out.

I watered the whole garden late afternoon today, it seems like no amount of water is enough...but a few hours later we were treated to a spectacular thunderstorm that lasted for over 2 hours! The first hour we didn’t get a single drop of rain, and I thought to myself what a waste with all this activity, can’t we have some rain to go with it? But then, after a whole hour of thunder and lightning, the heavens opened and it poured down accompanied by a continued thunderstorm. It continued to rain for a bit afterwards, in all we got almost 2 hours of rain. TWO HOURS OF RAIN! That’s the first rain we have had since beginning of February! It’s just a drop in the ocean, literarily. If we could have 5 days of rain like that, it would be a good start :-) But no more rain this week I suppose, people have holidays, and some people have an important day next Friday, from what I have heard... :-) (The Royal Wedding, if you haven’t heard, or are reading this long after I posted it) But my garden looked and smelled really refreshed after the rain, you can just see it in this picture, can’t you? Still 25 degrees, at 7:45 in the evening, with a rather grey sky; that’s why it looks so dark, but a very fresh, after-the-thunder-feeling.

Well, you are hereby up-to-date with both my gardens; I hope you enjoy the pictures – and if you are one of my regular visitors that still hasn’t signed up to become a follower, please do, it is nice to see the regular visitors and it makes me feel I write to you in particular. Until next time, take care :-)

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