Hard landscaping complete

Pleased with that.

Made a circular bed with the last load of bricks.

Shifted about a cubic metre of soil. Mulched like mad.

Aching muscles, Pinging back ache. Suitably wonky brick paths as befitting an allotment garden.

And I started the mad cutting back of the out of control rose and potato vine at the back of the plot. I need the prunings for one last permaculture bed.

I’ll hard prune it in winter. It needs to ‘start again’.

I took one last huge load to the tip.

Stood back and admired the three-quarters landscaped garden.  It’s not complete but I call it done. There is a shade line from the overhanging trees in the playground behind me. So the productive part of the garden is landscaped. And the rest will be put to bulbs, cut flowers and shrubs.

I need to do a mass planting of bulbs. That’s a start. And I need to divide that bergenia forest to see if I can revive some of the plants. Some bindweed is still lurking in the kniphofia, but I’m so relieved it hasn’t spread. Now that I have removed the worst of the brambles and nettles and broken glass, it is remarkably ‘clean’.

I am heading back home to France today and will drive down to Andrew and collect my annual loot of bulbs and bulbs and yet more bulbs.

And then comes the fun part of choosing plants that can thrive in this mild climate garden in some well worked clay that is also improved over decades (centuries?) making it that strange feature of rich, moisture retentive soil.

Hydrangeas? Roses. Hybrid musks. Chandos Beauty. Isaac Pereire. Even Iceberg – they thrive in London. I’m sure I have been compiling plant lists somewhere.  A Damask rose Quatre Saison. I will only be visiting this garden for a week a month, so I need some long flowering treats.

But right now all I want to do is get home to my ‘real’ garden after a long month away.

So off I go to the washing machine to try and get the filthy trousers cleaned. And then shove all the Ikea sacks back into the boot of the car. No doubt next time I will be cruising the streets of London on the lookout for tree surgeons and mulch.

But scavenging for mulch is about over for this year. 2018, the Year of Mulch.

I want to do some bulb and tree planting in the real garden now. News (with luck!) on Friday.