Reasonably brainy?

For a reasonably brainy person I can be extremely silly. But lately I've been really good. In my world this can never be taken for granted - often I flit around randomly, not thinking anything through. I put plants in ridiculous places, forgetting that there will be sun/no sun when needed.

Saturday 17th July

Today I was really, really good! I used common sense, and applied my knowledge of the seasons and the changing angle of the sun. Seems simple, doesn't it? It's gardening, not rocket science, right? The object of my attention was the side Pond Border, which over the years has become more and more shady. A little too shady for perennials and roses.

Hostas :
All the Hostas in this border were free. Lucky me!

I have planted a lot of Hostas here - they do really well, but while they're dormant over winter there's nothing to give the garden any shape. The perennial Centaurea is nice, but fairly invisible, even when flowering. The ornamental Maples are bare until spring, and rhododendrons planted last year in the back by the fence are still modest in size.

 The flowers are medium in size.
Rosy Cushion Rose

Aha! Action! I pulled out weeds (lots of invasive Lamium had replanted itself), and trimmed all the ferns. Out came two roses (a spindly John Clare, and one which I think is called The Countryman). The only rose left is now Rosy Cushion, which is well positioned and neatly pruned.

 Safe and sound in a patio pot - just in case it gets frosted.
Pretty Hebe

Needed - Shrubs!

Then I stood back, and evaluated things. Shrubs! Some permanent features were needed to complement the border's curve. So in went a variegated Hebe (with red tinges on the leaf edges) and a Phormium Yellow Wave (a better name would be 'Green Wave'). Further around the edge I shifted in a beautiful lime green Philadephus, just over knee high, which had been sulking in the dry garden up behind the pond.

I swish past this border on the way to and from the cottage, and in my mind's eye (at least) it's now a hugely improved winter look. Hopefully the spring-summer look will be equally nice, when all the beautiful hostas pop up.

Then I finished my day by raking up loads of dry rubbish, shifting a Hydrangea further around the garden, and managing to 'con' Non-Gardening Partner into burning my bonfire rubbish. Mister Helpful!

 I love Camellias!
Sunny Red Camellia

Sunday 28th July

Aha! Another mild morning. So what am I going to do first this morning in the garden? or, more specifically, what am I going to do that does NOT involve spending money buying a new Rhododendron or Camellia, neither of which I can afford?

OK. Better to re-use and make the most of what I've already got. So I'm moving a big green glazed birthday-present pot into a 'punctuation' position by the pond paddock gate. It's got a red Maple in it. Some dwarf Agapanthus plants need dividing and replanting by the gate, too. Might as well finish things off...


After planting three roses by the cottage, I placed the pot just so. The blue-green pot draws the eye through the blue-green euphorbias in the gateway, past the pond to the green cottage. The curve of the pot repeats the curve of its border edge, as well as the distant pond itself. Meanwhile the Maple, not to be outdone in this haze of analysis, echoes two more ornamental Maples further around the border, providing unifying, linking design elements throughout the panoramic pond paddock. And if you believe all of that you'll believe anything, hee hee...

Head Gardener and Big Pot

+5Great excitement for dogs - we've been for a picnic at the dog park, a social event which Rusty loves. Being a country dog he doesn't usually go to such things - he just goes outside, eats a dog biscuit, and chases a duck or an aeroplane. Big brown Escher was there, too, Daughter of Moosey brought a yummy chocolate cake, and both dogs and people had fun, fun, fun.

 Still flowering! Silly things.
Friesia Roses

Monday 29th July

I've been swimming, I've taken my dog for a wander around the orchard to check the lambs (we have eight, including two sets of twins), and I'm now contemplating being a bit lazy and reading my book. Hmm.... Shouldn't I be gardening? It's such a mild winter's day. And it's already the afternoon, the warmest time of the day...

Two and a Half Hours Later...

I've been good! I spread a bale of pea-straw on the end of the Hen House Garden, then moved along and weeded. And weeded. And weeded. Broom and gorse seedlings, hundreds of them, enjoying the horse manure so kindly provided (by me) six months ago. Oh well. Better fertile than barren...

And I found two of the cutest little Gunnera plants growing oh so well, sneakily hidden by a rhododendron. I'll have to take the shovel over tomorrow and remove them. Little darlings! I'm so glad I did some work outside, though. My book (and cup of hot coffee) are going to be all the more enjoyable now.