This is my blog (now there is a surprise!). I will be sticking in it poetry, prose, random musings, things that take my fancy and more than likely lots of pictures of cats. I hope you find something to amuse and/or interest you here.

Sunday, 17 April 2011

What I did on my holidays - part 1

Whoo hoo!  Holidays!  No work for a week.

Well, not paid work anyway.

Instead, I am tackling my garden.

We moved into this house a year ago last December.  I swore I would giv it a yar to see what I wanted to keep and what to change.  So, it is spring and I am making those changes.
I am a 'fits and starts' gardenr with green fingures and black thumbs.  Thus my success is erratic.

I have just finished day one of the project, or rather, it has finished me.  technicallt it is day two as I have already spent one day on this.  What I am doing is taking down a laurel tree that block the view down the garden from the house.
This is the view from our window.  The tree nearest the house is a 'Tree of Heaven'.  It is near the end of its lifespan I am told but, with the help of a good tree surgeon, we are nursing it along.  It is a beautiful tree but has one bad habit, it produces a chemical that kills anything that is planted near it.

The view from the top of the steps down from the decking.

The view from by the brick shed, still looking towards the willow at the bottom of the garden

Whoever planted the garden must have loved trees because the planted quite a few.  apart from the Tree of Heaven, we have a mature weeping willow (which is looking sorry for itself having had to be pruned severely last summer), a rowan and a couple of small trees I don't know.  Unfortunately, they have been badly neglected.  I spent £2000 on a tree surgeon who has got them back into some sort of health and shape but the are all over 50 years old, the willow and the Tree of Heaven were probably planted when the house was built in the 1920's.

I had the decking rebuilt last year.  The ground slopes sharply away at the rear of the house, the decking atsrts level with the rear door and finishes 5 foot off the ground!  That makes the slope about 1 in 3.
The whole garden slopes, although not all at that rate.  I am trying to decide whether to terrace it or not.  Terracing would make access easier but seriously increase the cost and workload.  One thing I do want to do is open up the view.  It is a narrow garden but long.  The trees and bushes block it off and make it look very small and dark up by the house.

So, what have I done today?  Not a lot that you can see.  Behind the tree arching over the path, there is a laurel bush/tree.  This blocks most of the light from the house end of the garden so I am taking it down.  I probably need to use a chainsaw to do it properly but I haven't got one.  I am also broke so getting someone to do it for me is not an option.  I have spent two days on it and am about two thirds of the way through.  Mind you, a day is only about 3 hours long.  After that my strength gives out, along with my knees and ankles.

Hopefully, I will be fit enough to finish it tomorrow but I can not be sure.  The vertigo I am undergoing at the moment is really taking its toll.


  1. Penny, From what I can see, your garden is wonderful! I use to garden allot, until it became to much work. Arthritis decided it wasn't worth the pain and fatigue, so now my motto is "Less is more" lol! I try to plant more flowering bushes these days, as they are less maintenance. Your backyard looks like a lovely sanctuary to write...Enjoy!

  2. You wouldn't like to come and do my garden whe you're finished?!?!?

  3. It looks better in the pictures than when I look out the door, I assure you. The pictures don't show all the rubble that is buried (it included a full bathroom suite!) or the weeds, bird mess, cat rolling area, etc...