May Days

Just thought I would share a few pics of what has been going on in my garden this past month.  This garden is still very much a project in the making.  Since we moved here we have started from scratch so consequently the planting is still all new, just coming into its third season.  Still lots of changes and improvements to make but that is true of any garden no matter how established, I think.

This is my poor garden after we had taken out the towering leylandii, put in a new fence and then churned it up installing the air source heat pump…

…and this is the border in May 2018.

The pink geranium is my favourite colour…

…and the bees love it.

The pics above are of my ‘shady’ border.  When I first planned the garden that side was shaded by our neighbours hedge.  Since we started planting they have rejigged their garden so my shady side is considerably less so but everything seems to be OK with that.

I had anticipated that above bit of the garden would be the problematic side as I have limited experience of growing in shade and that I would be more successful with the opposite side of the garden that is sunnier and drier.  These are the conditions I was used to in my old garden.  However, I have had a few disasters which surprised me.  I am having a major rejig of the planting on this side and learning by trial and error what is going to survive here.  At the same time I am slowly adding bulk to the soil as it is like a dust bowl.  I shall be following the Beth Chatto ethos of right plant, right place and taking some tips from her gravel garden at Elmstead Market.  The eucalyptus, blue herbaceous salvia and calamagrostis seem to like it and I have some lavender, grasses and box that are doing well…

…this feather reed grass is one of my favourite plants in the garden.  It is gorgeous when the plumes come out and gives height, structure and sound.

Surprisingly, peony Myrtle Gentry is doing well in these conditions,

so I bought this pretty peony to go in another spot in that border.

It’s not in the ground yet and I got a eyes-to-heaven look when I brought it inside the other day to protect it from a forecast thunderstorm but needs must.

So, that’s my garden in May.  Some bits of it are still under construction and the grass doesn’t get cut as often as it should but it is slowly coming together.  We have lots of  buzzies, fuzzies and birds and soon I hope to be taking it easy myself. like this little visitor.



10 Responses

  1. Oh, Jenn, how fabulous!!! It all looks fantastic and the damselfly is completely at home, too :lol: I love the black fence – what sort of paint did you use?

    • Jenn says:

      Hi Jane. Thank you lovey – the fence paint is just bog standard Cuprinol, black ash, I think. The concrete posts and baseboards are painted with special concrete paint from Wickes but I suppose I could have used masonry paint. The black is a traditional colour around north west Essex – lots of black barns – and I like the way it sort of simultaneously disappears but makes the green stand out. There was an awful lot of fence to paint as it took 2 coats – I was painting the fence when the plasterer was plastering the kitchen & back room and he kept shouting ‘you’ve missed a bit’.

      • Beanstew says:

        Must add that I also like the colour of the fence – don’t think I have seen it used up here which is a great pity, because it’s so much more elegant than the harsh brown-red, that is more common.

  2. gertie says:

    That’s great Jenn … and yes, the pink geranium, Ann Folkard, is a winner :good: I wish I had your space too as those graceful grasses are magical :rose:

    • Jenn says:

      Hi Anne – it’s not a big garden by village standards but it’s coming together. Because the back of the house is virtually all glass I want the garden to look painterly but it is never tidy enough :lol:

  3. cilla says:

    Wow, what a transformation Jenn. I am not surprised how mature and absolutely beautiful it is looking as I know how quickly our new borders matured. You must be very pleased. I love your first paeony……not so sure about the pink and white though ;-) Great to see the damselfly, I haven’t spotted any here yet. Keep us posted with pics of your lovely garden. :-)

  4. Beanstew says:

    I do like your feather reed grass – and it almost sounds as if you have come to the same realisation as myself – that borders are better for including an interesting grass or two. I shall keep an eye out for feather reed grass at the big wholesale nursery who have a tremendous grasses section. :good:

  5. Hayley says:

    You’ve come a long way since diggers and destruction Jenn, well done, it’s looking fabulous :-) The fence colour is a great foil for the green, did you paint both sides?

    • Jenn says:

      Thanks Hayley. Still getting there :lol: . We didn’t paint the other side but our neighbour got her young boys to do their side – they just started re-landscaping their garden after we put the fence in and have had cedar slat fences put up all round their garden (very Chelsea, very nice). They said that the black would create a nice shadow gap :-) In all honesty I think they were just glad to see the awful 30 foot leylandii gone from that side of the garden :-)

  6. VegVamp says:

    Finally catching up with things and what a treat this was to see. What a difference you have made Jenn, well done that girl, it looks wonderful. It is hard to believe that you have transformed that area from a 30ft leylandii nightmare to the beautiful border it is now in such a short time. The black fence gets my vote too! :good: It’s a credit to you. :rose:

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