This Month

This Month June 2016 - Wednesday, 01 Jun 2016

May has been a busy time for work but hardest of all I feel is the vegetable garden. The soil was a fine tilth but with the advent of a very heavy storm it became solid and very difficult to get back to a decent state without much toil. There has also been a problem with mice and pigeons eating the broad beans, something we have not experienced before. It was very frustrating and I finally decided to plant more seed into pots but with the amount of beans we grow that is a lot of pots.

We discovered a dead Cherry-plum which had most likely come to the end of its natural life in its place we planted a Tetradium daniellii which is a tree from the mountain woodlands of China and has sprays of small white flowers in late summer. Around it we planted some new Rhododendrons from deep purple to brilliant orange.

I have been wielding my artistic bent to produce a new sculpture to go on top of a Pine stump in the dingle and also placed a new feature in a small corner of the shrubberies where little will grow. It is a rusted milk churn I found in the back of a shed, I placed it slightly off the horizontal with its base lifted a little on some stones so the open top was on the ground with a mat of creeping white violets flowing around it.

June’s jobs will mostly consist of weeding throughout the garden although I have a long list, a very long list, of other jobs I would like to achieve. One of these jobs is to change the herb garden paths as at present it is gravel which means weeding several times a year so to save time and back ache we are laying slabs. These can look harsh but plants flowing over the edge of them will soften it. I would also like to find a little time on hot sunny afternoons to relax on the veranda with a book.

During the whole of May a percentage of all entrances, except on the NGS day, was donated to the Midland Air Ambulance, sadly it was a very quiet month for visitors however other attractions I have spoken to have said it has been quiet for them too.  The garden visitors who have come have been awed by the garden, many saying it is more colourful than others they have visited. It is a great time to visit gardens with so much in bloom, the Embothrium is amazing and well deserving the name of Flame Flower. Other trees and shrubs of note are Ribes speciosum, Crinodendron, the Rhododendrons and Staphylea colchica, to name but a few.

The bird life is profuse, even whilst sitting on the veranda many will come to the feeders such as Siskin, Nuthatch, Goldfinch and Woodpecker. There is a Wren nesting on a post of the veranda and although timid it will still fly in and out of the nest if you sit there quietly. I also, for my first time, saw a Kite over the garden.

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