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Showing posts from November, 2011

Growing Wishes

Over at my blog A Woman of the Soil I have been contemplating what new varieties of veg to try next year, but here in the Rosebank garden I shall be planting mainly annuals from seed.  All of them have been bought (at end-of-season prices i.e. very cheap)  with bees and butterflies in mind.
The only problem is, is that they are seed mixes, so I can't be sure what will come up.

I don't think I will do much direct sowing, which I think is a bit hit and miss - but I have read somewhere that if you sow them now in trays with an aerated lid on, then they will appear when the weather warms up and can be transplanted.

I also hope I will be able to extend my wild flower border around the allotment garden - so I think there is going to be an awful lot of seed-sowing going on in the spring.

With a bit of luck and a following wind there will be a lot of nectar-providers which will give a mass of colour for several weeks all summer creating  a pretty wildlife habitat and a sea of seed heads l…

A Guided Tour of the Raised Beds

I bet you are getting fed up of seeing pictures of this perennial wallflower by now, but I keep showing it because I am astonished that the flowers keep coming.  It has put on such a good display all year and I am really delighted with it.

At home in the Rosebank garden I have four raised beds which I use for summer produce, things that need a bit more care or that I need instant access to, like herbs.  Two of them, which had lettuce and tomatoes in, are now empty, except for the last of the summer cabbage.  I have weeded them and mulched with garden compost.

As you can see from the picture above, the compost is well rotted and crumbly and needed no sieving before laying it on the soil.  But, after reading the Eartheasy Newsletter, I decided to do as they suggested, and put a layer of leaves over them as well, to suppress any weeds.

If they haven't rotted down sufficiently by the end of winter, then they can be raked off and added to the compost bin.  To stop them all being blown off…

The Garden in November

The garden in November

The last flower of the Crocosmia shining like a little lantern hanging over the Marigolds

Nasturtiums glowing hot in the odd moment of sunshine (still hanging on as we have not had a frost yet)

An early flowering Hellebore that I grew from seed a couple of years ago

I found this last Hydrangea flower  in my friend Janets' garden
and the Primulas have been flowering on and off all year

Mahonia in Janets garden

The school playing field, no longer in use as the school has closed down,
will be reverting back to pasture for grazing cows.

Fiery red Berberis

Now the garden is almost laid bare in readiness for winter it is easier
to see what needs to be remedied for next year.
Every year my aim to to make the garden more as Nature intended
and less 'man made'.
To this end I must try to combine plants in an informal and beneficial way
keeping it as loose as possible, inviting wildlife in to a mixture of
habitats, with light and shady areas, and try to create a natural balance…

Alone and Far Removed

Alone and Far Removed by Audie Murphy
Alone and far removed from earthly care The noble ruins of men lie buried here. You were strong men, good men Endowed with youth and much the will to live. I hear no protest from the mute lips of the dead. They rest; there is no more to give.
So long, my comrades, Sleep ye where you fell upon the field. But tread softly please March o'er my heart with ease March on and on, But to God alone we kneeled.

Falling Leaves

We have had our first lot of heavy rain today, the most rain we have had all year really; but it did stop for a couple of hours this afternoon and I decided, that after taking a walk, I would rake up the leaves from the lawn.

I suspect that this will be the first of many rakings, as the Willow and Cherry trees hang on to their leaves quite stubbornly.  And, as the weather hasn't really been cold to date, I think it's going to be a long wait.

I don't have room for a leaf bin as yet, so I put them in pierced plastic bags, water them well and tie them up.  Last years' rotted down really well and were put to use as a mulch.

But I would like to have more - I only collect one large bagful from my own garden - but I should like to have enough to be able to mix the rotted leaves in with potting compost.  So, dare I go out into the street with a shovel and a bag and collect what I need, without feeling foolish?

I know in some parts of the village where leaves collect, they cause qu…

Dying in Bright Colours

October is nature's funeral month. Nature glories in death more than in life. The month of departure is more beautiful than the month of coming - October than May. Everything green loves to die in bright colours. Henry Ward Beecher
It was a glorious day here yesterday, chilly, but full of sunshine.  Whilst out walking I saw the trees lit up and dappley with shade, all turning in varying degrees of yellow.

Then I saw this hedgerow blazing like fire.

And gradually the garden is changing

The Hydrangea petiolaris just outside the kitchen window is ready to shed its leaves putting on a show of gold.

The evenings are getting colder and fires are lit.

Time for toasty toes.
No warmth, no cheerfulness, no healthful ease, No comfortable feel in any member - No shade, no shine, no butterflies, no bees, No fruits, no flowers, no leaves, no birds - November. Thomas Hood