It seems to have been a busy week, helped by some lovely weather. With no threat of rain or frost it has allowed us to get on with the paving round the pond with a big push yesterday to get three sides complete – apart from the pointing. This is a huge relief, apart from actually getting it done, because I can now try to level, dig and prepare the soil for some planting – the greenhouse is full of plants to put out. The trellis is all up too and painted. The grass is growing like crazy and has been cut twice this week and looks like it will need doing again in a couple of days.
Elsewhere, lots of plants are growing too and the hornbeam hedges are greening up and look really fresh. Two strips of long grass are speckled with late daffodils. The soil here is wet in winter and most of the daffodils have disappeared but a few remain – too many to give up on them and mow them off but not enough to make a show. But I suppose the long grass is helping wildlife, along with the dandelions.
Another view towards the big pond from the ‘hosta garden’. Now established for three years, the hostas are starting to mature and I am hoping for some bigger clumps and bigger leaves this year.
Looking the other way with the raised bed planted with ‘Cream Cocktail’ tulips and underplanted with forget-me-nots. It is hardly original thinking but very satisfying and can be seen from the kitchen and conservatory. This bed will always be planted with bedding.
Another pot of tulips is the focus of the long border grass, under the styrax. The purple tulips just overlapped with the orange ones to give the effect I was after. I wanted something bold but not red which is too dominant and ‘shortens’ the perspective. The hedge that forms a circle here is just about tall enough to start ‘confining’ this area.
Still needing a lot of work, the two lower ponds need to be completed and joining up with the big pond and the pump to be installed but we are getting there slowly. The bed at the rear is now edged and planting has started.
The stone trough is looking colourful too. I had to make some big changes to this. The small prunus was removed because it had bacterial blight and I was not prepared to tolerate that. The saxifrages looked sad too and, after investigation, I discovered that the roots were full of vine weevil grubs. I must have bought these in with the plants and I decided to remove the plants and as much soil as possible and replant the lot. I could not get ‘fine’ alpines that the trough deserves and had to buy what was available and although these are common plants they look attractive and can always be moved later.