By Monday, May 27, 2019 0 Permalink 2

Despite the distinct lack of proper rain in our area – (literally none in weeks) our garden is buzzing and blooming. As I wait patiently (well, trying) for our sweet peas, vegetables and other cut flower plants to grow and flourish out in the back garden, I thought it would be nice to share some photos from the front garden this month.We have a shingle garden with raised borders and self-seeded planting in the stones. What started off as six verbena and valerian plants is now a sea of white (in spring) and purple (in summer) bobbing on the breeze.Above is a comparison photo from the same section in March and May, so much green!The nigella is just coming into flower, it has multiplied rapidly and really needs to be moved further back but I will do that for next spring and plant some shorter plants in the front. I cannot wait to collect up all the beautiful seed heads.Everlasting sweet peas, santolina, geums and aquilegia are all dancing together and falling about the place. I love how these little guys have their faces all raised to the sun, pretty soon they will all be opening up into joyful yellow pompoms.These lot would love a bit more sun so they are all craning their necks to see past the sea kale and echium!This spring we planted a mixed hedge that will blossom and fruit with edible treats for the birds and we finally got to putting up a coastal style chestnut fence. It will slowly turn from fresh wood to a silvery grey in the sun and rain and is there mainly to stop foxes peeing on everything and dogs chasing the cats across the front yard!Phacelia is popping up all over with its spiky stems and feathery blooms, the perfect snack stop for the bees.Scabious, clover and horned poppies are holding up the borders and I think I spy tuberose headed for the light too.I love seeing either of these two tiny tigers carefully navigating the stones to come and greet me, they go wild for valerian roots if we pull any up. My upcycle trick for stopping ours and all the neighbourhood cats digging up seedlings is old oven grills. These were saved from our defunct built in oven when we renovated the kitchen and are perfect for things to grow up through and keep the paws out of the soil. We have a few little islands of chives spouting about here and there and cardoons with their great Jurassic leaves unfurling like wings. The stick tipi is for climbers to run wild up, they are a bit slow to get going as there just has not been enough rain yet.Geums of all colours are my absolute favourites in the garden, they flower early, last for over a week in a vase and come in all kinds of bright or gentle shades. Over the last few years we have planted – Mai Tai, Cosmopolitan, Totally Tangerine, Lady Stratheden and Borisii. They are all clumping up grandly and will need to be lifted and divided in the autumn. Above and below are another two comparisson pictures, it has been real fun taking these and I hope to keep it up for a visual records of this summer, autumn and winter too. A thin soil layer has gradually built up under the stones above the landscaping fabric, but the weeding is not too bad throughout the year, a thorough going over in the spring and autumn with on-sight removal of bindweed and some rampant yarrow has kept things quite tidy. We do love a bit of wildness though, so vetch, dandelions, sorrel, scarlet pimpernels and fennel have been left to fluff, intwine and fall about the place. Marlo always overseeing the garden work through the window and below a new peachy iris I snapped up at the Great Dixter Plant Fair this march. The clump of Siberian iris have been multiplying over the years and they have the most lovely seed heads in the autumn. Still a few gaps to fill and some annuals to dot about the place but it is coming together this year, better than ever before. It is such a joy to spend our time out here, nowhere we’d rather be.If I have missed some out or you’d like to know what any of the plants are, do just ask. Happy new week! :) Follow my blog with Bloglovin

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