Gateway To My Garden

Come with me and we’ll walk round and see how the garden has matured over the years.

Open the backdoor and you are in a small paved area with a few pots. In the spring there are Daffodils here. What was an embryo fernery has shot up. One of the ferns is now taller than me; though this doesn’t take much doing.

Turn round and at the end of the house on your left is a raised bed with a first year Globe, Artichoke planted at the far end. In time it will grow to five feet. The centre of the bed has a Saint Helena, and along the back are some Penstamens. The first corner of this bed has an Elstemeria, which arrived last year as dry roots. They were part of my prize, for being a joint south west winner in the competition: “Gardening Against The Odds.” Further along the same wall is the garden tap under the kitchen window and the first hose reel. In the corner between the kitchen window and a boundary wall is a tank collecting water from the house roof.

Now if you turn your back on the kitchen window you will see a large raised bed in the shape of a squared off C. This bed is planted up with perennial flowering shrubs. The latest edition is a beautiful pink Peony. If you follow the path to the right of this bed you will come to the pergola, which stretches across the garden.

There is a wooden bench and table here, backing on to the right-hand boundary hedge. Opposite is the raised pond. On the table you will see a square white pot with a white geranium.

At right angle to the bench and backed up to the shed is another bed which used to have Pinks, and Tradescantia, but these have been swamped out of existence by a vigorous Jasmine, and a Zephyrene Druin Rose. The rose and Jasmine are climbing up some of the pergolas posts and have begun to cover the top giving welcome shade on hot summer days.

There is a short slope up to the shed, the right hand edge of which is guarded by three short posts, each slightly taller than it’s fellows. This is a useful temporary spot to put keys, or the odd pot or pair of secateurs.

A photo of myself sat on the edge of the pond; lillies rising behind me.

To the right of the shed is a small strawberry pot, but I found that Thyme flourish here better than the strawberries did.

Just past the pond on the left are two compost bins. Now we follow a path further up the garden. On our left is a long bed, up to a gap where the second hose reel stands. The end of this bed nearest the compost bins is a pergola post up which another Zephyr in Druin rose is climbing. The rest of this bed is now covered by close netting over a metal frame under which are growing, Spinach, Cabbages and leeks. The netting protecting them from Caterpillars, but not slugs and snails unfortunately.

To the right of this bed is a g shaped bed where a variety of herbs grow. There is also a Contorted Hazel which has beautiful long catkins in the spring. I have under planted this small tree with miniature Daffodils. One section of the herb bed was home to my sweetcorn last year. This season my Runner Beans are here. Opposite the reel stand is a short path running between the front of the greenhouse and the herbs. At the end of this path you will see my wheeled potting bench.

Inside the greenhouse there is a raised bed on the left, a folding bench on the right and above this a narrow pebble shelf. Just inside the door on the right is a small tidy with several useful storage shelves. A small heated propagator stands on the top. Two waterproof electric sockets are fixed on the wall next to the tidy. In the winter a small electric heater keeps out the frost.

Continuing up passed the hose reel there’s an F shaped bed, my Onions are growing here. In the centre of this bed sits a cold frame, a useful stepping stone for plants between the warmth of the greenhouse, and the open garden. A low wooden fence protects the greenhouse glass from bumps from my walker and the wheelbarrow.

The end of the garden is filled by the fruit cage. Inside there is a central square bed with strawberries. The crab apple tree, from the centre of this bed, and the apple cordons which were in the low bed on the right just inside the fruit cage have been removed. They didn’t like the close atmosphere of the cage and succombed to Woolly Aphids. To the right of the gate backing on to the greenhouse is a ground level bed where the Apple cordons used to be, this is now planted up with autumn fruiting Raspberries. These are easier to cultivate than the summer fruiting variety; you simply cut the plants down to a couple of inches from the ground in January and up they spring. On the right hand side of the fruit cage is a raised bed where I grew Broadbeans earlier this year, and have now planted Bellotti Beans. In the left hand bed there are blackcurrant bushes. Against the far end of this bed is the last hose reel. Along the south facing boundary wall is a low raised bed with a Grapevine. In the corner a ffig grows in a half barrel.

I have a tree in a large green pot which stands on a wheeled platform: an Orange. It lives in the greenhouse in the winter and out in the garden from June to late September. I am particularly proud of the Orange as it has grown from a pip I planted six and a half years ago. Be careful if you go close, as it has extremely sharp, long needle like thorns.

I hope you have enjoyed your walk round my garden.

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