Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Guilty as charged

OK then - I admit it - I'm a fair weather gardener! Although I love my little garden and it gives me immense pleasure, I do not enjoy working in the cold or the wet. I guess after twenty or more years driving a desk and five winters in California, being back home during the tail end of a long cold winter is a bit of a shock. Each day I have looked outside at my rather miserable little garden, still smothered with soggy autumn leaves and the gaunt skeletons of last years annuals and felt the urge to tidy up. But the weather has rather dampened down that urge and I've placated myself by saying I'll get to it in a few days when my sciatica has eased. Well I've just about lost that excuse, so I'll need to get out there soon! But today with the snow gently falling, there's no way I'm going out there! Just to cheer up a dreary day I'll also post a pic of the garden last summer!

The back garden as it was last August before I escaped to the USA

The same garden now - like a seaside town in winter - all desperately sad and tawdry looking.

As I'm not generally in the UK during the winter, I have not planted much for winter interest despite the fact that I love all those intrepid winter flowering species. I'm ashamed to say that there's not a single flower in my garden at the moment and a limited range of evergreens. On the plus side, despite reports that its been a cold winter, there don't seem to be many losses. A small delicate leaved Pittosporum in a pot has perished completely and my green Arundo donax looks very sad but otherwise most plants are alive. This is however the lowest spot of the year for gardens. The winter has wrecked its damage, autumn leaves have long lost their attraction, ornamental grasses have becomes tangled bundles of stalks and spring flowers are still hiding.

Photinia 'Pink Marble - lovely new pink growths but awful habit

Heuchera 'Blackberry Jam' just looks sad without its summer partner of Hakonochloa 'Allgold'
Same group last summer

Good old reliable Trachycarpus fortunei just goes on growing slowly.

All the Phormiums have survived this winter

Just love the dusky foliage of Bergenia 'Evening Glow' - some gardeners just detest them - no taste!
Euphorbia mellifera - undamaged but looking a bit sad.
Astelia 'Westland' survived the 2011 winter when 'Silver Spear didn't.

So common but I love the sunny disposition of Euonymus 'Emerald 'n Gold'


If only the sun would shine up in the sky and not just in golden foliage!   I guess we'd all have more energy and enthusiasm. I really do want to get out there, tidy up and see what gaps need filling. And then there's the stump of that eucalyptus that I cut down late last summer. It must be removed before it starts to re-grow! I think I shall move over the Cercis 'Hearts of gold' which will leave more room for the Tetrapanax to spread. So much to do and so little inclination at the moment! In a tiny garden like mine, plant losses are still disappointing but are also the opportunity for something new and exciting! A good excuse to go nursery visiting!

1 comment:

  1. So little inclination...I don't blame you. Winter 2012-13 seems to drag on a bit longer especially compared to the more recent ones. I remember March of last year when we had a lovely warm spell, and on previous years too. Then again a few years ago we did had snow in April...

    Let us count blessings, at least this winter has been reasonably mild. Nt as mild as the last one but fortunately nowhere near as nasty as the one before that!

    Perhaps a nursery visit soon is the elixir you need :)

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