Friday, 19 August 2016

meeting nature halfway ...


I woke early to a grey, misty dawn.  After a week of glorious warmth and sunshine, rain is forecast.  I dressed and went to the top of the garden to harvest runner beans before the rains came.


 The cows in the back field were starting to rouse themselves from sleep. Light rain was spritzing the air; it will take a lot more than that to refresh the garden, which is in dire need of a downpour.


Whilst I worked I could hear the excited chirruping of a flock of long-tailed tits, flitting about in the branches of the apple tree, keeping me company in the quiet of the morning.


It has been a tiring week of garden drudgery.  Ridding the borders of couch grass and ground elder; an almost impossible task.  Plants (what remained of them) were lifted and the soil dug and sieved to removed the worst of these perennial thugs.
Now, the borders look bare; barren, but tidy.  The urge to fill them with plants again is strong; common sense tells me to wait a while; to enrich the soil with manure; then replant.
I am in charge of my neighbours' garden this week while she is away, always a worry to keep someone else's garden thriving; hopefully the forthcoming rain will do the job for me.


Dave cleared an untidy border; it had become clogged with a ground cover plant that had taken over.  Once it had been cleared, he built a seat out of decking to cover it; and with some plants in containers and a couple of cushions it now looks presentable and pleasing to the eye.


Maintaining a garden is not all about wandering around picking fruit and flowers - it is blooming hard work - but I guess it is worth it in the long run.

Here are some pictures we took this week.



 



 
A garden requires patient labour and attention. 
Plants do not grow merely to satisfy ambitions or to fulfil good intentions.
They thrive because someone expended effort on them.
~ Liberty Hyde Bailey
 
Elaine


41 comments:

  1. I agree with the hard work thing! My approach is "Little and often", but the aggregate is still quite large. The outdoor seating area you have created looks absolutely lovely.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's just a case of keeping on top of things isn't it Mark - sometimes though the chores seem to build up and the garden just gets away from you. Glad you like the new seating area - husband is very proud of his handiwork :)

      Delete
  2. What a glorious apple tree. You still have lots of colour and a lovely seat to admire it from between chores (and showers).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's a James Grieve Freda, and crops well every year. Sadly, the apples aren't keepers. It really wants a good pruning, much too big!

      Delete
  3. Ah yes friend a garden is a fair amount of work. I have to say though from your lovely blooms that hard work has reaped beautiful fruit. Glad to hear you are starting to get some rain. Take care and take a moment to put your feet up and enjoy those hard earned results. Hugs!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We have had some rain, alas, not enough, but at least I can have an evening off from the hosepipe.

      Delete
  4. Beautiful photos and a lovely garden. We are hoping for some light rain tomorrow to rejuvenate things.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We just had a couple of light showers, not sure it did much good, but better than nothing.

      Delete
  5. So very beautiful! I wish for rain for you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Sarah - your wish came true.

      Delete
  6. Your garden is looking beautiful- I love the new seat, how clever.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Su - the seat was made on a whim and we are pleased with the result, better than a scruffy border anyway.

      Delete
  7. I too was grateful to look out of the windows this morning and see that the ground was wet but it will take much more to rid our lawn of its yellow thatch.
    Your garden looks lovely filled with the rich hot reds and shocking pinks that signify August.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am taken with hot colours this year, I especially like the red rose - a bargain from Sainsbury's.

      Delete
  8. Oh Elaine, your morning sounded wonderful (except for the perennial thugs (HA). What a beautiful garden. It is very hard work and I think your fall is about to arrive.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was very peaceful Donna - I don't usually go out that early but I'm glad I did. Yes, I don't think autumn is far away.

      Delete
  9. We had some rainfall during the night, but not enough. It's all so dry. Your gardens look very lush, and I'm very envious of your apples; we have hardly any.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a brilliant year for fruit in my garden this year - all the apple trees and plum trees are heaving with fruit - not sure what I am going to do with it all.

      Delete
  10. Your garden always looks wonderful but as you say it is a lot of hard work. What is that fruit in front of the apple - smaller and more yellow??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That fruit is in fact a crab apple tree which is absolutely laden with fruit this year - last year all the crab apples dropped off very quickly, this year they are hanging on especially so I can photograph them :)

      Delete
  11. Your runner beans look wonderful and I do love their red flowers! Lots of gardening for you, but the results are just beautiful! I hope you get your rain - we are still waiting for ours here!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, we got the rain, not enough though. The runner bean flowers shown are in fact an apricot colour, Celebration is the variety, they are so pretty.

      Delete
  12. Your seating area looks lovely. My bete noire is bindweed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank Sue - I'll pass the message on to Dave. Luckily I don't have much of a problem with bindweed, thank goodness - I have enough to cope with without that.

      Delete
  13. A most enjoyable post and lovely pictures. I agree about gardening/plotting being hard work at times but it is worth the effort.
    Flighty xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Flighty. Certain times of the year seem to pose more work than others. Sometimes I look forward to the rest in winter.

      Delete
  14. The seat by the pond is lovely, I bet you enjoy sitting out there in the evening after working hard each day in the garden. Rain is needed and we have certainly had some of that today:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a nice little sun trap Rosie - just the job. We had a bit of rain, not enough though. A couple of light showers today, again not enough - never satisfied eh!

      Delete
  15. You still have so much blooming in your garden, how lovely! Your new seating area and that whole space around the pond is absolutely gorgeous! How I wish I had a space looking that good! Tell you what, I'd love to sit there and enjoy a good old chinwag with you. Good luck looking after your neighbours garden, I'm on duty looking after my next door neighbour's garden too, I am consumed by fear! I did enjoy your early morning pics and thoughts, your misty dawn is very atmospheric, yes, autumn is slowly creeping in!xxx
    I have ground elder too, isn't it a pain in the neck, I simply can't get shut of the stuff, that and mare's tail..hope you got the rainfall you needed, we finally had a good downpour!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Most of the colour comes from the container planting - the rest of the garden is a disgrace :(. I am still attacking the ground elder today in the front garden this time. We had to cut down the Buddleia this morning as it had rotted at ground level and half of it had collapsed. I shall plant another one though to replace it.

      Delete
  16. Well it all looks very nice Elaine. One of the two trees in my garden is a crab apple (the apples are the size and colour of cherries so it looks very nice in Autumn) which is once again laden with fruit. It will feed the birds right through the winter and the visiting deer that comes to feed off the ones that fall to the ground. Still lovely and dry and windy and sunny here today. No rain.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Rachel. Just come in for a breather after being out all morning trying to get the front garden in order - it's never ending this garden lark. My crab apple really needs pruning, it is far too big, another job to add to the list. The wind has dropped a bit today, nice and warm, but rain keeps threatening. Right I'm off back out now do a bit more then time for a nap I think.

      Delete
  17. Yes Elaine, gardens are hard work but so worth it.
    Yours is looking lovely......I love the seat, it looks so pretty amongst the flowers. What a lovely place to sit and have a cup of tea.

    We need rain, the garden is rock hard in places. It will come soon enough no doubt.

    Autumn is knocking at the door. I am loving the chilly mornings and the edge to the breeze we had all day yesterday.

    Have a good week and take time to sit on your new seat.........

    ReplyDelete
  18. There is definitely shift in the feel of the weather; misty mornings, and an edge to the breeze, although we have had some gloriously warm days this last week to make up for it. I was digging out ground elder for most of the day and I though I was going to break the fork - in places the ground was cracked open like a desert or a dried out river bed. But now it has started raining properly, not just the light wishy washy rain that doesn't do any good - so when I tackle the next batch of perennial weeds it should make the job a lot easier.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Send some rain here........31C yesterday. Keep dragging the hose out, something I do not do very often but plants really are struggling here.
      I must say I am looking forward to Autumn.

      Delete
    2. Yesterday was absolutely baking hot but light rain overnight. Today is cooler but humid. I was sweating cobs in bed last night. Sorry we haven' t had enough rain to have any spare. Everything was beginning to droop, watering with the hose barely keeps them alive but it helps. Autumn is beginning to look welcome,

      Delete
  19. I've welcomed the rain too, even though there have been those hints of autumn over the weekend. Still, it's back to hot, sunny weather today which means my own weeding of the borders won't get done - I don't like gardening when it's so hot. I love the seat; it looks like a very pleasant spot to relax.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes we have had our fair share of heat and definitely not enough rain - it has been quite dull here today but still humid - I look forward to Autumn don't you.

      Delete
  20. Couch grass is Yuck!!! A pain to dig up !!!

    Your photo's showing your garden are lovely, and yes gardens can and are hard work but the rewards are so amazing, especially for me clicking away at my keyboard.

    Hope your week is going well

    All the best Jan

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh yes, it is a pain and with the ground being so hard it is nigh on impossible to dig it out.

      Delete
  21. What a perfect position for a seat. It has given me an idea for an unproductive corner. Ground elder has been introduced to my garden for the first time in some topsoil brought in by a contractor I think when we had the drive done.
    Interesting about the James Greive apple tree. We have an unidentified ancient apple, a cooker, but the apples rot very quickly even if I pick them carefully and they are unblemished. Perhaps that is what this one is. Not a very interesting flavour but makes a purée quite nicely.

    ReplyDelete