I’m not a great sun-worshipoer, one of Hubby’s main requirements for my “Garden planning” was a nice flat area where he could lie in the sun and cook on both sides until he was done. For myself, I wanted to make the garden pretty, very low maintenance, and I needed a patch of shade available at all times.
First thing in the morning the summer sunshine arrives from over the houses behind us and streams in through the kitchen window, then as it rises higher it hits the shed and the left flowerbed, slowly moving around the garden until the last few rays linger on the roses at the top right of the garden before sinking down below the skyline for the end of another day.
I dont remember making many happy memories from our time in “Milton Keynes” (two complete years – minus nine days…not that I was counting), but one thing I do remember is the sun coming up and down in similar positions, and being able to sit with my morning coffee on a strategically placed bench, in the shade in the morning. As the day moved on and the sun did it’s rounds, however, I would have to retreat indoors. Although the auburn colouring of my hair is now of a bottled nature because I’m not quite ready to show the world just how grey it has become, the ridiculous pale skin I have protected through many, many summers is very real. I wear a hat, trousers and long sleeves pretty much all year round, winter for the rheumatism, and summer for the sun… I just change the thickness of the material. The sun gives me an uncomfortable itchy rash after about ten minutes exposure, and itches in red blotches for a good few days before it goes away.
Hubby’s flat area for self-toasting is the grass on the top level of the garden. I’ve managed to find quite a large surface, I think I measured 4 metres by 4 and a half when I ordered the turf. For most of the day it’s wall to wall sunshine up there, and surrounded by the white walls is quite a suntrap. By about lunch time the sun is on the front of our house and the shadow in the back garden extends past the “Crazy patio” with its mosaic tile table and wooden benches. Perfect for a picnic lunch.
In the little yard at the bottom of the garden, I have two chairs and a smaller, coffee size table. These are against nextdoor’s wall and are always in the shade, even first thing when the sun shines in through the kitchen window. These two chairs are “My Place”, I can sit here at any time of day, put my feet up on a second chair, close my eyes and listen to the birds with absolutely no chance of my skin burning if I fall asleep.
From here I can see the flowerbeds, the colour from the flowers of the new alpines at the base and the roses as they open their buds over the arches. I can see the various garden ornaments I’ve used to decorate the walls and create smiles in little corners. I can see the little fairy sitting on the bench … and the new stone python which has joined the rabbits on the patio.
More from before : Going’s on in my “Garden