I see I haven’t written any blog for 2015... so have decided not to look back too much, looking forward seems a much better idea!
2015 continued in much the same vein as previous years, the challenges and vagaries of the weather, new plants to replace plants that died…..or just new plants to create more variety.
Our Open Day went very well, with 3 other local gardens opening with us for the Hospice in the Weald. We didn’t open for the NGS although we had some group visits for them in July and August. We also had an art group with their tutor in the garden for a day, and, as a watercolour artist myself, it was great to see how the garden looked through the eyes of someone else.
Towards the end of the year we decided that our small wild flower meadow was not doing as well as we could have wished for, and so had a change of plan. The area now contains ‘prairie style’ planting, so we shall see how it fares this season.
We also decided that the area at the top of the dry stream bed could do with a revamp, so was cleared at the end of the autumn. Inevitably some bulbs and Japanese anemones were not dug out and so we must dig it through again – more thoroughly this time perhaps? The plan is to make it into a small bog garden which we feel might be more in keeping with the dry stream theme! We hope that it will be finished in time for our visitors this year to see.
As I write this at the beginning of April, I have already watched the snowdrops and crocus come and go, the hellebores had a good year but are more or less gone over, the daffs are fading although there are just a few later flowering ones left to open. But, the tulips are just coming out, as are the fritillaries, pulmonaria Blue Ensign, camellias and the buds on the rhododendrons are fattening up nicely. From the blackthorn blossom in the hedges it looks like it might be a good year for sloes as long as the frost doesn’t catch them.
We have decided to change the planting slightly under the pergola in the top garden, which will now include some euonymous to provide some winter structure and some bush roses (which might stop the grandchildren from jumping over the beds instead of walking round on the path!!!), we have chosen 3 different roses to plant here, one a peachy orange, one yellow and one creamy white. (as I sit here at the computer writing this I cannot remember the names of the varieties, except to say they are all David Austin roses).
In the front garden we dug out 3 Hidcote lavenders that were a bit past their sell by date and have replaced them with rosa Pearl Drift which we bought when we celebrated our Pearl Wedding Anniversary in February.
The winter pruning was all completed despite the miserable weather, but I sorry to say I have got a bit behind with forking over and weeding all the beds, my excuse being that the soil has been too soggy to work on. However, it is beginning to dry out now so there is plenty to do.
So, April now, and the garden is really springing into life. The perennials are reminding me where I planted them, the fruit trees will soon be in blossom and everything is showing the promise of things to come. Lovely, can’t wait!