Out out, damned Alkanet...

Time to pull out more Alkanet. My garden is uber-alkanetted. It's a nuisance perennial forget-me-not, with slightly furry, prickly stems, roots that out reach underground, and seedlings for ever and ever. And the honey bees adore it. And I love my bees.

Honey bees are in trouble, the news tells me, and so gardeners need to open their hearts and help out. Aargh! That means keeping the Alkanet in my garden, as the easiest of 'fixes'. And it's definitely a keeper. I can completely clear (ha ha) an area with the shovel, remove all the roots, introduce new plantings - not a problem. Looks great. Then the following year, welcome back the pretty little blue flowers. Buzz buzz.

Bee on a Forget-Me-Not

Out with the Forget-Me-Nots...

It's time to start pulling out many of the annual forget-me-nots, too. So my socks (and my dogs) get covered in sticky biddi-bids. The socks - some just get thrown out. The dogs - well, neither allows their back end to be brushed (young Pebbles has huge issues with this). Winnie has to go to the groomer each year to have her back leg pantaloons shaved off.

Later, Mid-Afternoon...

It's hot again. I've done a couple of hours with the shovel - have decided to 'superficially remove' (ha ha) the Alkanet from the Septic Tank Garden, and load the cleared garden up with horse manure. I know I won't get all the root pieces out. But I can try. I only have one dog companion - Minimus the scary cottage cat is on the prowl, so Pebbles is watching from the safety of the house.

Boring watering comment for the record : it takes seven watering cans to damp down the new piece of sown lawn, taking about 12 minutes, which isn't at all onerous. And shifting the hoses once every half hour takes all of five minutes. In a few hours the patio garden (and particularly its roses) will be well watered, and the hoses can move onto the Septic Tank Border.

 By the house.
Mutabilis Rose

Rose comments for the record : Many of my beautiful big climbers and shrub roses are out. Go, lovely Mutabilis! Agnes, lemon rugosa, three of you in different gardens, well done! Fruhlinsgold, what a wonderful show! Westerland - welcome! Maigold - still going strong, such a groovy coloured rose.

But Fruhlinsmorgen? What's with this serious sulking? Hopeless! No flowers, pea-sized leaves. A rose mystery. Same garden, same carer, same weather, even the same breeder as Fruhlinsgold...

Not so much later...

Aargh! It's too hot. Minimus keeps appearing by my hands, too close to the shovel for safety. Anyway, now the idea is to dump some horse manure in, shift the watering hose, and then have a shower, wash my hair, and scrub my fingernails. Then read my book holding a nice cup of tea in my clean hands.

Thursday 2nd November

Another beautifully hot day, and I've solved the problem of biddi-bids covering my socks. And why, why, why didn't I think of this before? I simply don't wear any socks. My gardening shoes are perfect sockless. So easy a solution, and so silly a problem. Easier to rinse dusty feet than pick sticky seeds off socks.

 Pretty blue!

OK. There's too much Alkanet. But I can't even dig it out half-properly because of tree roots. Have come inside for a rest, a cup of tea, and a think. What to do? Poison? I'll have to load the garden up with horse manure anyway. There are more stones in here than soil. No wonder it's been a graveyard for several recycled roses. I've just found a label for Bacarolle (?). RIP.

The End of the Day...

I've pulled out many more loads of Alkanet and assorted weeds, and loaded horse manure in the back of the Septic Tank Garden around the Weeping Maiden Camellia. I've also made a start on the garden behind the pond, where there should be a path. It's in there somewhere, underneath the forget-me-nots.

Darcey Bussell Rose and Alkanet

And something that definitely cannot be forgotten about - all those roses, responding to the hotter weather, blooming. Yeay for the roses. Don't look too closely at the leaves...