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Green fingers

        What is this strange feeling I’ve found while poking around in my flowerbeds ?  Surely I’m not turning into a Gardener ?

         I’ve been weeding around the alpines as they’ve grown, I did take away the protective sea shells once the plants were established, but the cat visited again so I’ve put some back as the cat doesn’t like them.  I was a little disappointed last year with the lack of flowers on most of the alpines, but they’ve more than made up this year.

          The daffs did well in the right bed, but not so well on the left.  I’m planning on adding a border of daffs in the front garden this year so I can just pop a few in the left bed at the same time.

          I moved a few of the larger bulbs, the honey lilies and purple pom-poms, back underneath the arches so that I could offer them more support and they rewarded my interference by mostly not flowering this year, again the right bed has done better than the left.

          The roses have taken by far the lion’s share of looking after, regular spraying to avoid a repeat of last year’s greenfly and rust attacks on my red roses, and the replacement of my yellow rose with a second orange one.  There’s been a regular watering and feeding program through the last week or so of unseasonally warm weather as well as some deadheading of the spent blooms most eveninings.

          The grass, originally nice fresh turf, isn’t looking quite so green as it did at first.  We only lost one little spot, which was quite good, but now it’s a bit sparce all over.  I scattered a few seeds and I’ve been keeping up the watering, as well as keeping down the weeds, I’ll just keep it happy through the summer now, and scatter some more seeds in September.

          Until then, I’ll just sit in one of the chairs you can see at “The other end” of the garden, I’ll put my feet up on a second chair, sit back with the scent of fresh coffee, and maybe close my eyes for a moment or two while I listen to the birds flying back and for to the feeders. 

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          More from before : Going’s on in my “Garden

Patio python

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          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. 

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          More from before : Going’s on in my “Garden

Honey lilies

          My honey lilies in the flowerbeds haven’t fared so well this year, I only have three flowering in the right hand bed, and none at all in the left one.

          I originally planted them along with the purple pom-poms with an aim to add some height to the flowers, I’ve just got one pom-pom too, and a pretty stunted one at that, so it’s been quite a dissapointing show all round.

          I moved the bulbs to the back of the beds at the end of last year so their lack of display is my own fault, I’m not going to be too mad at them for not displaying, the roses have added the height this year, however, this evening just taking a last look before settling indoors for the evening, a little buzz caught my attention, and of course, I stayed around long enough to capture the smile.

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          More from before : Going’s on in my “Garden