How many hours do you spend in your garden?

I started doing this blog last year on June 19th. As well as the normal gardening related material I started to record each week the number of hours that we had spent working on the garden. This was partly out of interest but also because whenever we open the garden the number one question is “How long to you spend doing this? or other variations such as “This must be a full time job!” or “How many gardeners do you have?”.

To be honest I had very little idea apart from knowing we worked very hard in the run up to an opening day. So lets see what we did:

blog hoursThe chart shows hours by week with the red line a three week centered moving average to smooth out some of the peaks and troughs. The zero weeks reflect when we were away and no gardening was done.

Note that the hours are gardening hours not the many hours we spend enjoying the garden or indeed writing the blog!

I had always assumed that we spent long hours prior to an opening. This year it was on 14th June and this is reflected in the peak on the right of the chart. I had always assumed that after the opening the garden more or less looked after itself. Last year it was on June 20th and, apart from a holiday straight after, the hours continued around 20 hours a week up until the middle of November. So I have revised my assumptions.

December and January are relatively low at around 10 hours a week but given that the lawn does not need cutting then, typically 2 to 3 hours a week in summer, they remain quite high.

So, in summary we have:

Gardening Hours
Week beginning June 10th Total since June 19th 2016 Average per week
48 1011 19

an average of 19 hours a week.

The total size of our land is about 0.9 acres. 17_06_14_6203The garden consist mainly of flower beds with a small vegetable area and a soft fruit cage. Over the years we have tried to make our garden relatively efficient. For example the lawns have long sweeping edges and have metal edging which makes cutting the grass easier etc. However, we do try to achieve succession planting which must increase the work load. I would be interested to hear from anyone else who has recorded their hours.

And last but not least the hours for this week are:

2017 Gardening Hours
Week beginning June 17th Total 2017 to-date Average per week
30 558 22

From now on I shall report on a calendar year.

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – June 2017

June is here and the garden has come to life. This must be one of the easiest GBBD to write with just so many blooms to choose from. But first a few high level photos of the garden taken from our conservatory which is upstairs in our house.17_06_14_6203Looking down the garden Rosa Rambling Rector has taken over the apple tree which was damaged earlier this year in a storm and beyond more roses given the whole garden a perfumed scent. 17_06_14_6206Towards the garden wall Rosa Blush Noisette on the pergola in the corner.17_06_14_6204Across the large pond a multitude of blooms of delphiniums, geraniums etc.17_06_14_6205And looking back towards the pleached lime hedge the underplanting of Rosa Alfred de Dalmas and Lavandula augustifolia ‘Hidcote’ is all coming together.

Looking at some of the blooms in more detail

Rosa Irene Watts is putting on a great display with Carpenteria californica in the background just coming into flower.

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Carpenteria californica

17_06_14_6267Rosa Joseph’s Coat produces these interesting multi coloured blooms.17_06_14_6257Clematis Rhapsody always puts on a good display.17_06_14_6208Recently I talked about the wall across the lawn. It has now been transformed with a hardy pink Diascia noname that is flowering along the wall.17_06_14_6238

Rosa Anne Boleyn is one of may favorite David Austin roses. Is not too tall and has a fantastic scent.17_06_14_6235Potentilla atrosanguinea var. argyrophylla Scarlet Starlit providing bright red stars in the border.

Delphinium Black Knight survived the recent winds!17_06_14_6232Near the Delphinium Black Knight a Rosa Iceberg in flower.17_06_14_6230Knautia macedonica probably a self set but the colour combination works well.17_06_14_6229Hosta Sun & Substance together with Clematis Boulevard Angelique in a lead planter. This planter is on automatic watering. Last year the drain holes blocked and the planter was flooded for some time. Everything was removed and new drain holes made. The original clematis died but the hosta has come back and shows great promise with the new clematis.17_06_14_6228Rosa Bonica as a standard rose, newly planted last year.

Rosa Alfred de Dalmas under planting of the pleached lime hedge.

Iris laevigata Snowdrift and Iris laevigata in the large pond.17_06_14_6224Clematis Madame Julia Correvon another reliable clematis.17_06_14_6222The large pink flowered plant is Geranium palmatum which has a habit of self seeding everywhere but how can you fault it when it looks like this.17_06_14_6221The first dahlia in flower this year, Dahlia David Howard.17_06_14_6220Salvia nemorosa Ostfriesland (East Friesland)17_06_14_6219Rosa Felicite Perpetue along the bottom of the garden.17_06_14_6217Sambucus nigra Lace Lady17_06_14_6216Lysimachia atropurpurea Beaujolais. The problem with plant nurseries is that you always see something that you have not got but feel you have a place for it. This was one such purchase last week!

Geranium Patricia a great mid border plant.

Rosa Ghislaine de Feligonde in full bloom.17_06_14_6211The largest Crambe Cordifolia we have ever grown.17_06_14_6210

Clematis Chelsea and newly planted Rosa Pink Gruss an Aachen.

Viola cornuta horned pansy.

Clematis noname…………..I must look through all my files!17_06_03_5905The magic of some clematis does not die when the flowers are over. Gold seed heads remain.17_06_03_5904More Allium Christophii17_06_03_5902Tradescantia Innocence, what more is there to like!

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day is hosted on the 15th of each month by Carol at May Dreams Gardens. Visit her blog to see what is blooming in gardens around the world.

Gardening Hours
Week beginning June 3rd Total since June 19th 2016 Average per week
49 963 19

The borrowed landscape has gone blue and more art in the garden

16_12_29_4625We are very fortunate in having a beautiful borrowed landscape. Our garden actually ends where you can see the fence but there is part of an ha-ha (built when it was all part of the rectory next door) at the end of our garden and our garden appears to go on for ever. The immediate field is only used for sheep but the fields beyond have a variety of crops on them. Sometimes wheat when the colours go from green through to gold at harvest time,  sometimes rape seed when we are surrounded by a sulfurous yellow when it flowers in May/June.17_06_01_5899This year all the fields turned blue.17_05_28_5867This is a crop of Flax (also known as common flax or linseed), Linum usitatissimum, is a member of the genus Linum in the family Linaceae. It is a food and fiber crop cultivated in cooler regions of the world. The textiles made from flax are known in the Western countries as linen, and traditionally used for bed sheets, underclothes, and table linen. 17_05_28_5873The fields are a stunning crop of small blue flax flowers. 17_05_28_5870Through the day the flowers open up and close in the evening resulting in the field going between blue and green. When the wind blows it can look like a huge lake.

Art in the garden

DSC01816At least once a year the local Hoby Art Group spends the morning capturing the different aspects of the garden. This year we were very lucky to have a sunny and warm day.

Glebe House Garden

It feels like a race against nature at the moment. There are two parts of the garden where some significant replanting is required. There are still many pots waiting patiently to be located. And we have people coming around a week on Wednesday! To make matters worse it has started raining! So its getting up with the sun and very long days. At least one person was very upset I had missed the following table out of my last blog as she was keen to see how many hours we had done! The table is for week beginning May 27th:

Gardening Hours
Week beginning May 27th Total since June 19th Average per week
59 914 18

End of the Month View – May 2017

It is totally crazy in the garden just now. All the beds need to move to there summer look. There are over 70 large dahlias which are in pots waiting to fill the odd space left by tulips etc. In addition we have visited plant nurseries several times to get additional stock as we are changing the “look and feel” of a couple of areas. In the vegetable area everything seems to need attention with frost having finished it it time for planting out courgettes, tomatoes, dwarf beans etc.. And in two weeks we have an open garden! As such this will be a short end of the month.17_05_31_5878This is my classic end of the month view across the garden. You can see that everything is growing at a great speed and most of the climbing roses are in full bloom.17_05_31_5879The bed on the left which is mainly roses are just coming into flower.17_05_31_5880In front of these roses is a Tradescantia, Tradescantia ‘Innocence’17_05_31_5881The bed in the left corner is having some major changes. the tall herbaceous at the back is being extended round to the left with the addition of Veronicastrum virginicum ‘Fascination’, Cimicifuga ramosa ‘Atropurpurea’ and Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’.17_05_31_5882The Crambe Cordifolia has gone completely mad with the most enormous flower head. Some time ago I said we might move this as, although the flower head can be stunning, the leaves are not very interesting and take up a lot of space. It must have heard me and is demonstrating that it should stay!17_05_31_5883Small beds in front of the pond have for some reason always been difficult. We have changed the rose to Rosa Pink Gruss an Aachen with Clematis ‘Chelsea’ a ground cover clematis. Early days but so far so good.17_05_31_5885The bed to the right of the pond has not yet had the early summer tidy up. I anticipate some dahlias will go in here. However, the Allium Christophii are looking great and on the wall Rosa ‘Alister Stella Grey’ and Rosa ‘Crown Princess Margareta’ are blooming away.

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Rosa ‘Alister Stella Grey’

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Rosa ‘Crown Princess Margareta’

17_05_31_5889The bed on the right already looks full but as you can see there are some Helenium ‘Moerheim Beauty’ waiting to go in. On the wall Rosa ‘Mutabilis’ and another Rosa ‘Alister Stella Grey’ are in bloom. The very large cat mint is Nepeta ‘Six Hills Giant’.

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Rosa ‘Mutabilis’

17_05_31_5893Again you cannot beat the Allium Christophii.17_05_31_5895A new clematis growing up the pergola,  Clematis ‘Monte Cassino’. 17_05_31_5897Just to the right of the end of the month view is the urn bed. Here Rosa Alchemist  always puts on a great show at this time of year.

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Rosa Alchemist

 

The wall across the lawn

We moved to Glebe House in September 1994. When people come around our garden they often ask us what the garden was like when we moved in. Actually some of the garden features were there then but over time they have all evolved and in some areas a small paddock has been incorporated into the garden.17_05_25_5840 The other day I noticed that the wall across the lawn was looking particularly good.This wall divides the main lawn and follows the contours of the ground resulting in the lawn being at two levels and although it does not align with other garden features it takes the eye into the garden towards the views beyond.img120This photo was actually taken in June 1995. As you can see the wall was in place then but was not really made a feature of the garden.17_05_24_5833We always felt the wall needed a good “full stop” at the end. As you can see above we have created a small round bed at the end with a Rosa Bonica providing the “stop”. You can also see that the wall is actually higher than the original wall. In the old photo the lawn edge actually sloped down to the top of the wall.img119Another photo from June 1995. The steps up had been built and these have not been changed apart from the flower beds around them and the lawn in the foreground is now paved with sandstone  The very large tree, back right, is an old walnut. We were very disappointed when it died and had to be removed about ten years ago.17_05_25_5839The steps today with the sand stone paving.17_05_24_5831As well as raising the height of the wall we have created a flower bed along the top of the wall. This is about one metre wide and at this time of year it really comes into its own.

In any dry stone wall then Aubrieta is an essential plant.

The rock rose, Helianthemum ‘The Bride’ has been looking great although just one day after these photos were taken there were no flowers on it. That was probably due to the heat which has unusually been at 28c for the last few days!

This is probably my favourite geranium, Geranium cenereum subcaulescens. It is a very dark cerise colour which really shines out from the green leaves. It is planted singularly along the wall but also on mass under Rosa Bonica at the end of the wall.17_05_24_5824Another geranium at the end of the wall is Geramium sanguineum ‘Shepherd’s Warning’. This was planted about eight years ago and although it looks quite healthy has not spread unlike some  of the other sanguineums that can be very invasive.

This plant was taken from a cutting in a friend’s garden. It is definitely a “noname” plant at the moment.17_05_24_5818Viola cornuta ‘Alba’ must have arrived from else where in the garden but it is working well here.17_05_24_5832Rosmarinus officinalis forms a small bushy shrub and provides Rosemary for cooking.

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Geramium sanguineum striatum

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Geramium sanguineum striatum

17_05_24_5812Geramium sanguineum striatum is a lovely geramium and here it is on either side of the steps.17_05_24_5817Geranium cinereum ‘Ballerina’ another small geranium.17_05_24_5819Another rock rose, Helianthemum ‘Ben Fhada’17_05_25_5838Along the wall from the steps.17_05_24_5831Looking the other way along the wall. Over the next few days we will be planting Mesembryanthemum ‘Magic Carpet’ which have been started in the greenhouse and will provided interest throughout the summer.

Gardening Hours
This week Total since June 19th Average per week
51 885 17

Garden Blogger’s Foliage Day – May 2017

Foliage is everywhere now. At this time of year it is always new, fresh and clean. Last week we have had the first real rain this year, about 60mm in 48 hours, which has been great for the garden and has ensured all the leaves had been newly washed.17_05_21_5795Hostas catch the rain and look great.17_05_21_577017_05_21_5771Here a big leaf of Hosta Sun & Substance getting larger by the day.17_05_21_5808 A creeping thyme, growing in a planting pocket in the paving, is now covered with new small leaves. In four weeks it will turn purple with small flowers.17_05_21_5788Another herb, Oregano Origanum vulgare Aureum, has a wonderful yellow/green foliage and makes a great border plant as well as being useful for cooking.17_05_21_5791Arum italicum Pictum puts on a good display but this is short lived as the leaves disappear once it has flowered.17_05_21_5800Plume Poppy, Macleaya cordata, grows to about 2m and has the most delicate leaves.

Ferns continue to unwind their leaves17_05_21_5801and some just put out beautiful coloured leaves such as this Japanese Painted Fern, Athyrium nipponicum Pictum.17_05_21_5804These are the leaves of Geranium renardii and don’t they look great.17_05_21_5780Plenty of foliage but the purpose of the photo was to show the plants waiting to be put into the garden! As well as my dahlias, which have been hardened off before planting out, last Wednesday it rained and rained so what do gardeners do. We went to a good plant nursery and filled up the car with more plants!17_05_21_5782Dahlias in pots having been grown from tubers.17_05_21_5803And in the green house now the foliage of the future just staring out.17_05_21_5802Courgettes  waiting to be planted. Interesting the golden varieties also have gold leaves.

The gold foliage of Sambucus racemosa Sutherland GoldBerberis tunmbergii AureaPhysocarpus opulifolius Dart’s Gold and Euonymus fortunei Emerald ‘n’ Gold looks really great.

And the red foliage is not to be outdone! Heuchera ‘noname’, Berberis thumbergii ‘Red Chief’, Berberis thunbergii ‘Rose Glow’ and Acer palmatum dissectum.

The yew hedges have all put on new growth and look stunning.

Varigated foliage Euonymus fortunei ‘Emerald Gaiety’, Cornus alternifolia Argentea and Osmanthus heterophyllus variegatus also adds interest.17_05_21_5784The beautiful leaf of Rodgersia aesculifolia gets bigger as the year goes on.17_05_21_5783Lastly the new leaves on the pleached lime hedge are wonderful.

Do have a look at Christina of My Hesperides Garden where she encourages us to look at the foliage in our garden rather than focusing on the flowers on the 22nd of each month. You will find links to other participating gardens there. Thank you Christina for hosting this meme.

Gardening Hours
This week Total since June 19th Average per week
28 832 17

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – May 2017

Just four week since the April Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day and what a difference. Spring has gone and we are now into summer although the weather has yet to fully realise that!17_05_13_5700The first wave of aliums are looking splendid throughout the garden.17_05_14_571817_05_14_5724These have been in for many years and over time have multiplied to the extent we are having to reduce them despite their displays at this time of year.17_05_13_5696These are actually killing off the Euphorbia griffithii Dixter!17_05_10_5686nevertheless the alium flower is a thing of beauty.17_05_10_5687And whats left of the Euphorbia griffithii Dixter is too.

17_05_14_5713This is Rosa Madame Gregoire Staechlin and is normally the first rose to flower in our garden but not this year as Rosa Old Blush China started flowering on April 8th!

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Rosa Madame Gregorie Staechlin

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Rosa Madame Gregorie Staechlin

17_05_13_5710Another rose in flower is Rosa Madame Alfred Carriere.

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Rosa Madame Alfred Carriere

17_05_13_5691Rosa Madame Alfred Carriere is on the end wall beneath our conservatory from where we can also see a fantastic display of wisteria.17_05_10_5667Wisteria seems to have been very successful all around the area we live in which must have been helped by the lack of hard frosts this year.17_05_14_5725The scent from these flowers permeates into the house and is a delight.17_05_10_566617_05_10_5665 Below the wisteria a  Choisya ternata  which is in also in flower.17_05_13_5695Actually this plant has been moving itself. Originally it was planted under the steps leading up to the conservatory. It obviously decided it needed more light and over time has moved!17_05_14_5714We have a number of hardy osteospermums in the garden. These have come through the winter well and are already putting on a good display.17_05_10_568017_05_14_5719However, we always have a backup by taking cutting and bringing them on in the greenhouse. 17_05_14_5716Cerinthe major Purpurascens is not really hardy for us although sometimes they self seed and come through the winter as this one has.17_05_14_5717but there are also replacements in the greenhouse should they not self seed.17_05_14_5721Clematis have started flowering. This is  Clematis Daniel Deronda,17_05_13_5701and this is Clematis Guernsey Cream.17_05_14_5723One of the first geraniums to flower is Geranium himalayense with a Potentilla Abbotswood in the background.

Potentilla Abbotswood and Potentilla notknown.

The pond Iris sibirica looking great in front of the yellow Philadelphus coronarius Aureus.

Another early geranium is Geranium renardii. This is quite an unusual geranium with interesting foliage as well as attractive flowers.17_05_10_5674Deutzia x rosea Carminea a relatively new addition to the garden.17_05_13_5702Global warming means this Euphorbia Mellifera is able to grow and do well now in our garden.17_05_13_5698One of the climbing roses Rosa Shot Silk has started to flower.17_05_14_5727This is a beautiful rose but does not repeat well.

And I have added all the photos below.  Click on any one to scroll through them all. It is also possible to see them full size by clicking on the full size button (bottom right).

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day is hosted on the 15th of each month by Carol at May Dreams Gardens. Visit her blog to see what is blooming in gardens around the world.

Gardening Hours
This week Total since June 19th Average per week
13 791 17

‘Digital Detox’ on The Isle of Carna Scotland.

For the last week I have been away from the garden having a ‘Digital Detox’ on The Isle of Carna with Diane and four other friends. carna-wholeCarna is a small island lying in Loch Sunart, nestled between the Ardnamurchan and Morvern peninsulas on the West Coast of Scotland. Although now a place known for its peace and seclusion the island is packed with history stretching back to being formed up to a billion years ago! The island is a 600 acre mosaic of wildlife rich habitats including traditional wildflower meadows, Birchwood, Pinewood and internationally important Atlantic Oakwoods, heather moorland, peatland, hill grazing, many burns and some bogs. All of which is open to explore.

Here is a map of Carna and here is a link to the Isle of Carna website.

17_05_05_5629There are only three houses on the island, two of which are available to rent, located on the gentle and sheltered eastern side. The above cottage is the one we stayed in and with no electricity, no land lines and no mobile signals you are totally disconnected from the rest of the world; a complete digital detox! 17_05_01_5411The cottage does have bottled gas providing lights downstairs and cooking, open fires for heating and candles in the bedrooms.17_05_05_5599 With no roads on Carna and just an old tractor to help move luggage and supplies, there are no traffic worries, and the sounds of the shore, the sea breeze and the abundant wildlife is all that we had to contend with.17_05_03_5492 The view from the cottage across Loch Sunart to part of the Scottish mainland that has no roads and is virtually empty of human inhabitants.17_05_05_5597Everywhere we looked the colours are stunning.17_05_02_5641The loch is tidal enabling many walks along the shoreline and an ever changing landscape as the water rises and falls.17_05_01_5426At low tides the seaweed provides an extra colour dimension to the scene.

We scaled the 170m (550ft) summit of Cruachan Chàrna, the hill behind our cottage, for stunning views over the loch and open Atlantic Ocean.17_05_03_5488The cottage as seen on the walk down Cruachan Chàrna.17_04_30_5397There are many different habitats on the island that can be explores via a network of tracks and trails most of which are rarely visited by human footsteps.

Bird list

We kept a list of all the birds we saw and identified. It was great seeing the Golden Eagles in their natural habitat and the sound of the Cuckoo, no longer heard in Leicestershire, could be heard all day.

Rock Pipet Wheatear Dunnock
Sea Eagle House Martin Sparrowhawk
Herring Gull Thrush Siskin
Common Gull Robin Great Tit
Meadow Pipet Shag Chaffinch
Cuckoo Canada Goose Twite
Greylag Goose Merganser Greenshank
Raven Common Sandpiper Wren
Heron Golden Eagle Swallow
Oystercatcher Stonechat Buzzard
Willow Warbler Reed Bunting
Pied Wagtail Great Black-backed Gull

Wild flowers

The start of May is probably a little early for the majority of wild flowers. The following photos are some of the more interesting we identified.

Otters and seals

Provided with the cottage is a boat with an outboard motor which can be used to explore the island and surrounding lochs.

Common Seals rested on many of the rocks around Carna. Otters are much harder to see as they tend to be much shyer. Using binoculars it was often possible to see them feeding and playing across the water from the cottage. To photograph them well required either luck or a very long telephoto lenses neither of which we had. However, the following photographs  capture the otters although the quality is poor.

I hope you have enjoyed this look at The Isle of Carna.17_05_02_5643

End of the Month View – April 2017

At the end of December I took you on a frosty walk around our garden. This month I plan another walk around the garden but this time going in the reverse direction taking in the different views as we progress around. The old kitchen garden divides the garden making circular walks the best way to see the whole garden.

17_04_25_5361This is the view you get as you enter the garden through a gate in the garden wall. The lovely tulips are Tulip Ballerina. The urn is designed to be a focal point as you enter. In fact when the plants have grown up in the summer the view of the garden is restricted making an element of surprise as you walk in.17_04_23_5346From this point, with the urn on our right, we can see diagonally across to the steps which provide access to the higher level lawn. The Tulip Red Impression is continuing to create a good display.17_04_23_5347As we move further into the garden it begins to open up. In the distance you can just see small lake which used to be the fish ponds for the rectory that was next door.17_04_23_5348Further still on the paved area we get a different view down the garden past the tree that got damaged recently in a storm. Behind us is the back door of our house with a number of climbing roses on the walls.17_04_25_5359This one is Rosa Old Blush China. Actually it is not meant to be a climber but if it wants to climb I happy with that. 17_04_25_5360Next to Rosa Old Blush China is Rosa Madame Alfred Carriere. These two roses are both flowering very early this year.17_04_23_5324Going up the steps on to the higher lawn we get to the spot where my classic End of Month View is taken. (See January, MarchOctober, September, August)The tulips are continuing to put on a display and the aliums are just beginning to open up.17_04_23_5325The blossom on the apple tree is out and looking good despite the storm damage.

Behind us is an area, beneath some large lime trees, which we treat as a woodland garden. We have made some cobble paths here to enable easy access. A  seat provides an interesting viewing place across the garden.17_04_25_5354Continuing on around the garden we can see the end of the garden wall on the right.17_04_25_5375In the circular bed as well as  the Brunnera Mr. Morse,  Tulip Hageri Splendens is now in flower.

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Tulip Hageri Splendens

17_04_25_5367We have now come round to the bottom right hand corner of the garden and are looking up behind the garden wall. The planting here is mainly shrubs designed for relatively easy maintenance.17_04_25_5373Continuing on and just before the first yew hedge there is a small pond on the left. This pond has been designed to be very nature friendly with a sloping edges enabling easy access to the water and an easy escape route should something fall in!17_04_25_5377Having walked along behind the wall we get to a small grass lawn and flower bed. The Geranium himalayense has just started to flower and looks great with the tulips. The bed is called Ivy’s bed after the lady that lives in the cottage over looking the border.17_04_25_5378Across the lawn we get to the Italianate area. Twenty years ago this was all paddock and we added the pond and landscaping. As I mentioned, in 2016 the pond developed a leak and a major repair job was done. With this disruption we decided to renovate the whole area.17_04_23_5343The gravel borders were contained with wooden edging and this had rotted away. These are being replaced with metal edging and the gravel, into which the garden had been growing, is all being cleaned up! The obelisks each have had a rose planted in their centre to grow up with clematis. Work has yet to be done on the joints between the paviours which need cleaning and re-pointing.17_04_23_5344The seat by the pond is one of our ‘gin & tonic’ seats and this is the view from there. With all the work on the pond it is going to take a year to stabilise.17_04_25_5352The little green house at the end of this area is even fuller and there will soon be standing room only!17_04_25_5379Looking back at the ‘gin & tonic’ seat the Carpinus betulus Frans Fontaine columns are just coming into leaf.17_04_25_5380Having completed the tour we get to the shady border by the end of the house with Erythronium Pagoda, various hostas and ferns providing the main planting.

Gardening Hours
This week Total since June 19th Average per week
27 778 17

Do have a look at Helen The Patient Gardener’s blog where you will find links to other gardens at the end of April. Thank you to Helen for hosting this meme.

Garden Bloggers’ Foliage Day – April 2017

It is very much spring now. We have had the snowdrops, aconites and many other early spring bulbs. The tulips have been and still are splendid but some are beginning to fade. We have had some very warm days and the new foliage is bursting out everywhere and its sensational. Everywhere you go at this stage in the growing year fresh leaves are opening up giving clean fresh colours after the dormant buds of winter. This blog is looking at some of the foliage currently in Glebe House Garden.

This is Philadelphus coronarius Aureus which has changed in a couple of weeks from a bundle of dry looking sticks to a golden display.

Ferns are unfolding leaves in their spectacular way. Unless you look every day you will miss the leaves as they unfold.

New rose leaves often give strong coloured displays. Here are three roses in very different stages of development. Rosa omeiensis pteracantha had grown to about seven metres high and had out grown its space. We cut it right down to ground level last autumn and are now being rewarded by some beautiful new shoots. Rosa Irene Watts was rejuvenated a year ago February when it was also cut down to within a couple of centimetres of the ground. Last year it started new growth which was pruned to shape in the winter and now is looking very healthy. Rosa Pink Gruss an Aachen is a new rose that has been planted next to the water feature by the main lawn. 17_04_19_5309Some of the smaller plants are also putting on a spring display. Euphorbia myrsinites is technically in flower but the effect is a foliage delight.17_04_19_5311And similarly Euphorbia griffithii Dixter is in flower but look at the leaves which are green stained with red giving a huge pallet of colour.

I blogged about this pleached lime hedge.  It is now coming into leaf.17_04_19_5319This cardoon Cynara cardunculus has come from nowhere in a week!

Hostas are coming up everywhere if the slugs and snails will let them. To avoid too much damage to the leaves you need to control the slugs and snails before the leaves come out so it is worth trying to remember where you have Hostas planted.17_04_19_5312Fatsia japonica never really loses its leaves but in spring the new growth is refreshing and very architectural.

Itea ilicifolia only drops a few leaves in the winter and these pictures show the quality of foliage that has come through the winter. 17_04_19_5310Aruncus dioicus is an herbaceous plant that is cut down in the winter and is now coming back quickly for a summer display.17_04_19_5297These Betula ermanii were planted a few years ago in groups of three which will eventually grow together. When they were planted the bark was a bronze brown colour but as they grow they are developing a warm silver bark. These have been jet washed to maximise their colour.

Variegated foliage is always worth thinking about when planting shrubs

and dark foliage should also be considered.

Cornus alternifolia Argentea eventually should grow into a reasonable sized tree. For some reason it has been very slow to get going but the structure and leaves are very nice.17_04_19_5318Another flash of gold from Sambucus racemosa Sutherland Gold 

Do have a look at Christina of My Hesperides Garden where she encourages us to look at the foliage in our garden rather than focusing on the flowers on the 22nd of each month. You will find links to other participating gardens there. Thank you Christina for hosting this meme.

Gardening Hours
This week Total since June 19th Average per week
30 751 17