Back in the Garden! On a Bank Holiday no less…

I have picked up six bucketloads of fallen apples. I have composted three and brown binned the rest. We have received the bill for our next year, to start in October. This includes our three months extra and we are gonna need to continue paying. Lots of talk about the Government sneaking through changes to council responsibilities but hey we are getting used to this by now.

The garden isn’t paying any attention as a week’s neglect has just seen the same old, same old – weed growth and more weed growth alongside a heavy scattering of fully plump apples. I was meant to cut the grass but apple buckets were filled instead.

And discussing the shed has meant a new site has been chosen. Still need to clear the fallen sycamore which was stored for burning. Think it is seasoned after three years? But the garden is being planned! And it is going to mean a lot of work…

Neglected marrow!
Mushrooms behind the book shed!
Apples! For compost!
Clearing this area by the greenhouse still needs to happen…

Random continues…

I drove a little way away from LGC and bought some gravel. Four bags full. I am now questioning why I do these slightly random things? Not part of the giant scheme of things for sure and not identical to previous freecycled gravel…

Before decanting the umbrella…
Now the bench and table get respite!

All will come good for sure. Maybe it’s the time of the year or the random things that being stuck at home do to you. Maybe I need to go and take the lumps out of the patio slab space? Then we can use the gravel from the herb garden to level it… not sure how, we don’t have a roller?

And today the umbrella was moved so the corner I’ve been eating my lunch is sheltered. More weeding and pruning was needed as bindweed went mad unchecked. Lots of areas being changed for the better and trees are being dug up too.

This spiky plum? tree which has only produced fruit this year is being pruned heavily. The gooseberry bush at its base had dried up so much it literally snapped apart so I could get to the ivy on the wall that was running amok. That’s given me a dry throat so needed pulling for sure. But spikes and dust made me want to stop for lunch. Bon appetite!

You can see the woodpile behind the ramshackle shed after clearing that corner…

Gardenkeeping!

Like housekeeping only in the fresh air! Excitingly the Perspex ordered for the greenhouse arrived tout suite and in a day the ‘glazing panels’ with shatterproof and appleproof qualities have been inserted. The greenhouse is back in action and tidy! Lots of pressure washing has been done and decisions about steps into the greenhouse are in place.

Great slabs of concrete were being used around the littlest shed, which lies in pieces around and about – and it would make more sense to use them for steps out of the house? We built an extension and have never had a proper kitchen step. And double doors on other rooms also land on, well, not a lot, and it’s been a few years now. Like I’ve said before, lifetime projects…

But we have a paved area where the greenhouse was which can now be a little patio outside the shed in progress? It was made with some lovely little paviors I got through free cycle. And a little sitting area is much better use of this sun trap.

What a cracker!
Repotted my banana plant.
Still needing tidied up! And weeded!

Swapping jobs today!

I am trying to finish a paint job I began under lockdown… it’s involving climbing up ladders and trying to stay stable which as most MSers with vertigo know is not as easy as it sounds. Roof lights were asked for but I always thought we’d get someone to do it? In fact when I first took our collie for a walk and she went for someone before I pulled her back, the man she lunged at turned out to be a decorator. A year in and she is much calmer on walks and doesn’t seem to need to protect us, her current herd.

High old skylight… I still feel shaky!

Husband has shifted the greenhouse and in a definite reversal has been in the garden all morning. He is going to purchase some Perspex panels to save the glass from dropping apples. But it looks like the shed is going to be built over the herb garden after all. Which was the original intention?

A marrow!

It also means losing, or cleverly sculpting, the two trees in this corner which we haven’t identified. And replanting some of the herbs.

New home for greenhouse…

The greenhouse frame was moved by three of us, while I held back the roses. We are dismantling the arch which was rusted through and again that changed the vistas through the garden. I feel like I am now keen to finish the painting and get back outside!

Bindweed corner…
Arch will find a new home? Or will go to the tip?

Maintenance!

There has been a bit of hard work today! Given a 430 wake up from our intrepid scout who was brought inside by the smell of a dead rat… found by the side of a shed (we have a few, take your pick!) she had managed a good few hours of sleep! My bags, however, are deepest purple today!

The grass has been cut, brambles and spiky things excised, and several discussions about shed renovations and purchases and repositioning have been had.

White cosmos- think courgettes will be exchanged with next door!

It’s thirsty work all this gardening and friends exchanging photos from the socially distanced pub make me want to find said secluded spot. But the media has been full of bad behaviour which makes me less inclined to think it a good idea.

I’m still finding my happy medium however as yesterday’s family reunion took it out of me, as it became a longer day than anticipated and then we had the scout overnighter going on simultaneously by zoom.

Hence my editing of areas of the garden needing weeding- a job for another day…

Buddleia in bud.

Much needed Rain!

The hottest days have cooled down again. Today is fresh and I feel quite good about the weeds! Shock horror!

Actually I lied! But I have discovered another horror! And we identified this new terror after it had chewed it’s way through lots of buddleiha… and I spotted the leaves first, then the huge beetle which was identified as a cockchafer beetle or a May bug. They will eat trees, bushes and flowers! The larvae grow underground and eat roots then the bugs emerge round about now. Eek! Not what I wanted to hear. I honestly don’t want the adult eating my garden but I am not going to go out and exterminate them… catch 22!

Chewed leaves..
Vine Weevil AKA cockchafer beetle AKA May bug native to Europe.

I went back to work this morning to a very different college/exam setup. I was wiping everything multiple times. Think I will take gloves tomorrow! Afternoon to relax methinks.

Clematis atop the apple tree.

Lots of love…

The garden is technically a mess. But it’s also where lovely and toxic plants co-exist. And a different Bindweed variety is attacking the roses… Dioscorea communis or Black Bindweed has heart-shaped leaves and it was twining itself around the roses. Eek! Took my eye off the ball for a few days! I’ve filled the brown bin completely this morning, so heavy it is hard to trundle it out of the garden.

Black bindweed my new nemesis!
Clearing bindweed, and ivy, and other of my nemesis weeds. A life’s work!
Clematis we got with a moving present.

I am back to feeling spurred on to do a bit more again but I must admit the lockdown seems never-ending. I’ve devoloped excruciating itching, so bad I’ve made myself bleed really badly. Ouch! Is it a side-effect of Tecfidera? Another one I’ve discovered is that it may be responsible for my newly curly hair. I thought going short did that but it seems to be a side effect: unlucky people lose hair, but others find little ringlet waves!

I must be more positive is also my birthday resolution! My girls just asked me to give them present ideas, trying to get me to say the ideas they have had. And the DPS guy delivered something I wasn’t meant to see, but the way he said my name made me think it was addressed to me… Everything inside is still a mess (except for my beautifully tidy kitchen surfaces after yesterday’s burst of energy) but you know what? We are all safe, well and happy.

Look at those potatoes!
Lambs ears! They are so soft.

My garden. A place of meditation, bruising hard work and contemplation. Supported by my family in these tough times.