So much fun...

 In the Allotment Garden.
Pretty Iris

I've been having so much fun trying to get the garden ready for the visitors. It's great fun tidying things up that I've left messy for months. Silly me!

Yesterday I cleared Alkanet (mainly) out of the Allotment Gardens. That took ages. Since when did these clumps of Alkanet become so robust? Best not answer that. And I got a bit cross about the neighbour's weeds hanging over my little dog deterrent fence. Visual pollution. But hey! The Allotment Garden has changed a lot since it was first cleared and planted. I've removed a lot of the smaller roses, replanting them in the Hump Garden. Archduke Joseph, one of the few I left behind, seems wonderfully happy in his solitude. Mind you, I did give him a huge tickle up (i.e. an energetic pruning) last autumn.

The fragrant rugosa hedge (just six Roseraie de l'Hays in a row) is flowering, bulking out rather nicely, and suckering sideways (such a well behaved hedge). Buff Beauty is very pretty this year, and the Rambling Rector is girding his rose-loins, ready to impose himself upon my flimsy dog-fence. Dear man!

 An old-fashioned looking rose.
Archduke Joseph Rose

Irises smothered!

But Euphorbias and Alkanet have been smothering the irises, stopping many from flowering (that's what I reckon). So the irises need rationalising. What to do and where to do it? Aha! The million dollar gardening question.

Alkanet again

Today I tackled the immediate house gardens. Alkanet again. Look - it's a weed. I don't love it, but the bees do. So it's yet another of nature's delicate balancing acts.

It's Green Alkanet (there's another type). I looked it up : 'The pretty blue forget-me-not flowers of green alkanet (Pentaglottis sempervirens) are attractive and are pollinated by bees and bumblebees. However it can soon spread in damp shady gardens where it may become a nuisance.' Damp and shady? Not quite the best description for my garden. Alkanet is a nuisance, full stop.

 Blue for the bees.
Alkanet Flowering

I worked hard. I filled the wheelbarrow five times. Enough said. Went to bed a bit late (after a singing rehearsal), fed Minimus the cat inside the cottage, put the other food bowl outside, and Speckles the stray cat appeared immediately. He/she stared at me through the door glass, then ate the lot. Am getting used to his visits. I hope he stays around.

 Such a pretty colour.
Buff Beauty roses on the Fence-Line

Yeay! The visitors come tomorrow. Am looking forward to this. Hope they enjoy my garden, and don't think I am too silly. Second thoughts - not a problem! At least silly isn't boring.