May (it) work?
This year we’ve had the closest days to Spring during March, after that April has been very rainy and chilly and May continued with fresh air and some showers. I’m not here to complain, last year at this time I was already fed up of shorts and heat! However, too much rain makes it difficult to carry out some main jobs I wanted to be done in the garden. The gravel garden has been stuck for ages, weeds in the rose garden were taking over the small roses, paths needed to be done amongst the rose beds so you can walk and see the roses without getting dirty, then we wanted to make a proper vegetable garden this year… All this projects needed to be realised while weeds were rioting in the garden, bindweed strangled whatever came in its way, pests and diseases and bad bugs were trying to decimate my plants.
And what are you supposed to do? Just stand behind the window and watch the rain falling? Noway!
Apparently we took possession of the entire gravel garden. Yes my nightmare is over. On the picture above you can only see a little corner of it though, I didn’t get any decent picture of this part of the garden and plants are still growing. The gravel garden has a rectangular shape that connect the kitchen door with the vegetable garden. Between the gravel garden and the gravel paths of the rose garden a second rectangular shaped bed has been created, almost a twin of the gravel garden in size. Looking at the pictures I almost feel ashamed of showing such half-done jobs but in the other hand it feels like a great goal to me. Above right you can see the layout and part of the gravel paths in the rose garden. They are very useful, I don’t like lawn. Anyway many things still need to be done, as you can see there are tiny little roses flowering amongst the grass, we are going to ‘build’ the garden around them. (the big white rose is r. banksiae Purezza)
In the picture above you can see (ok you should use some imagination) the final part of the gravel garden with the path leading to the veggie garden (here we didn’t finish with the gravel and weeds yet). Now look harder (and with harder I mean you have to squint your eyes very narrow, like a grain of rice), can you see those green little dots in the vegetable garden beds? Well those are vegetables indeed, my dears. In our non-raised beds (as all the developed World seems to have raised beds but I never understood the point) we are now growing different kind of tomatoes, different kind of peppers, salads, artichokes (those I keep for the look, not really for a meal), aubergines, zucchini, obviously parsley and plenty of basil and some different kind of chili peppers. Nothing special actually but this is our first real veggie garden, let’s wait and see…
Fortunately the older part of the garden, the grass garden, is doing pretty well: weeds are under control and perennials and grasses enjoy this spring showers and mild sun. I am really pleased with the only digitalis that I dare to grow: digitalis ferruginea (and I’m not even sure it is ferruginea!), which is self-seeding discreetly around. I am also very happy of a grass I introduced this year: hordeum jubatum similar to its wild and more common relative but somehow totally different, in fact this is shorter, flowers are smaller but with longer spikes that glow with a burgundy tone. Very elegant, I hope it’s going to self seed around the garden.
I know this doesn’t really matter with the rest of the post but I finally managed to come home with a real dark flowered geranium (g. Rosemoor), I love it and I needed to show it off a little bit! I’ve bought it at a garden fair I went to last Sunday with my mum: there were roses everywhere but it was so packed with people that after one hour or less we escaped. I didn’t buy any roses but a lot of grasses (8x schizachyrium scoparium and 3x molinia caerulea Edith Dudszus), these grasses are now planted in the rectangular bed near the gravel garden. Just for you to know I call this particular bed ‘the square’ and it contains the San Pietro pear and the famous (famous? seriously?!) osmanthus cubes, which are now only osmanthus growing into cubes. I’ve been planning this bed for a long time during the last winter and I hope it’s going to be a nice bed. So far I am happy with it, even though the plants are still little.
Can you imagine rainy days without rainbows? Well I can’t. As I can’t imagine doing heavy duty in the garden without some appreciable results, that’s why I hope to see the plants growing and thriving and fulfilling the garden. I hope my efforts will be visible soon. I’ll take these twin rainbows as a good sign!