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Monday
May032010

May

May, and the garden has definitely sprung into life. If you don't like forget-me-nots, look away now! (But who doesn't like forget-me-nots? Honestly!)

Upper lawn 1st May 2010 

Everything looks much more green than last month. We've had to mow the lawn twice, I've chopped back all of the perennials, and everything is coming back through. The greengage is covered with white blossom - I must have only just missed it last year. Fingers crossed at least some of it will become fruit. The forget-me-nots are all over that Scooter bed. They self-seed, and I love the blue. There's lots of 'proper' plants coming up through them, but for now I'm very happy with them!

Lower lawn 1st May 2010

The view from the window shows the new rowan tree (well, just - it's still a bit skinny) and behind it there's the silvery leaves of the elaeagnus up against the honeysuckle on the back fence. The elaeagnus was growing in the pot on the concrete, but it turns out that they are hardy, nitrogen fixing plants, and I decided it had grown up enough to help my chalky soil support more life! Also, you can see the white clemetis on the back right. That has flowered massively this year, and the smell has just been gorgeous! It's all caught up in the tres, and I think it will just grow higher up into them this year and smell even better next year (hopefully). 

Concrete 1st May 2010

The concrete (just for a change) is a bit of a mess. The new potatoes are coming up though, and the new lemon tree looks good in the corner. The tiny japanese maple in the teardrop bed has come back to life again, and in fact that teardrop bed has filled itself up with foliage now. The cordyline hasn't appreciated the snow much, but fingers crossed it will be ok eventually. There's a bundle of the perennials that I cut back against the greenhouse - I'm slowly chopping all of that up to become mulch for the front terraces. I keep wishing I had straw to mulch with, and having the problem of how to get rid of the dead stems of the perennials. I figured I'd try and solve both problems at once! It's working pretty well, but cutting them up is quite hard on the hands. I'm just doing a little every now and again after giving myself blisters the first time!

Upper slope 1st May 2010

Out front, and again everything is so green compared to last month! Lots of fresh young leaves. The rosemary is in full bloom, which the bees are loving. The aubretia is flowering, and it's covering more and more of the rocks in that corner. And I've found some yellow alyssum and some sea thrift for the edges. There are lots and lots of alliums coming through too, which I'm looking forward to seeing flower. 

Path 1st May 2010

Looking across the path, there's a new arch. It was a bit of an impulse buy if I'm honest. I'm hoping to grow the kiwi plant I bought last year up one side of it, but not this year. This year it's already twining its way around the trellis next to the front door. So I'm trying my sweetpeas this year! The pink of the currant bush is starting to fade, but the bees have been loving that one too. 

Veg bed 1st May 2010

The veg bed has been spruced up considerably since last month. I moved all three of the obelisks (again with much swearing) so that in future only one of them needs to move each year. I dug over the potato patch, which took a lot of effort and another trug-load of stone and flint, and have mulched with seaweed - which is the dark colour in the trench. All the potatoes are showing their heads now, which is good! I decided not to dig the terrace quarter, but to chop back the growth, put down a couple of layers of newspaper, and then most of the compost from the potato buckets out back went on top of that. That should smother the clover, and the dead clover and newspaper should go to add humous.

On the top slope, I've shifted all the stones around the apple trees, weeded, used more newspaper as weed-suppressant and replaced the stones. Both trees are covered with blossom this year, and the dogwood in between is looking really happy with the move too. I've also planted out 10 home-grown aquilegias - I don't think they will flower this year, but next year should be good. They were all grown from seed from the purple one out back, but there are lots of aquilegias around so I don't know what their flowers will look like. I've also used chicken manure pellets all over the place. They had a 2-for-1 on at the garden centre. They are stinky, but hopefully it'll help!

Terraces 1st May 2010 

Looking at the terraces, the white and red currant bushes are covered in flowers. The red currant is looking healthier every year after a shaky, shaky start. I'm just going to keep mulching, keep trying to build the soil around it, and fingers crossed it will just keep getting stronger. I think the white currant will be great again. The blackcurrant hasn't quite started flowering yet but is looking hopeful, and my blackberry looks like I might get a little more than last year. There are more blackberry canes coming through already, giving me hope for increased harvest next year. The curry plant doesn't seem to have enjoyed the snow much and has died back, so I might have to cut it back quite hard. 

So, lots of growth, lots going on, and lots of promise of fruit and veg to come! 

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