Autumn planting

So much for being organized today.  I’m writing to you on the train to Paris. I had intended to finish this last thing yesterday. But this has been a week bamboozled by the moon. And as a consequences I conked out early.

Went to bed without doing my homework.

The wretched moon keeps shining so brightly in the middle of the night my foolish brain is tricked into thinking it is way past wake up time and I spring up, confused.

And then I see it’s not even 430am and curse the forgotten shutters. Had I shut them at night I wouldn’t be awake so early. And getting back to sleep is a challenge at the best of times.

Why, it’s just like jet lag all over again.

So excuses out of the way, on I go.

I’ve been doing a spot of planting.  I have loved the look of the hornbeam hedge below the house. And decided that now it needs extending.

These banks in their rather naked form (grass, brambles, suckering plums, exposed rocks and boulders and whatever bits of rubbish works its way to the surface (broken glass and random crockery chief among them) are unpleasant.

Not a joy to behold (I almost wrote butt ugly, but decided that was unbecoming).

So spacings plotted, soil dug over – rubbish removed. And off I went to the plant nursery in search of the solution.

Hmm, the car boot of shame. I can see the hornbeams in there but there is a touch more retail indulgence.

Ah, but I wanted to plant up the new garden area under the oak tree on the bank above the courtyard as well.

Viburnum tinus and Choiysia Aztec Pearl were on my wish list.  The viburnums are easy to come by.  But choiysias were scant. And variegated were the only possibles at my nursery. I do so dislike variegated plant.  They always look anaemic to me.

So I lit upon the closest imitation. Hardy pittosporums.

Aren’t they gorgeous? No?

Well, the horses admired them. Probably calculating how they could get their greedy chops on them.

But I digress. Back to the hedge.

Here it is.

Squint, tilt head. What hedge? Can’t see a thing. It is buried under mulch.

Try this angle.

If I hadn’t put up the fence you wouldn’t notice the spindly sticks.  And the fence is only temporary. I need a stronger one.

By my calculations I spend more time trying to put up wild animal barriers than actually planting.

Factor in the drought and the hungry badgers, hedgehogs and wild boar and you just can’t plant and walk away, especially in an exposed area like this. This is on the main road down the mountain. A happy hunting ground for critters.

And in the low autumn light you can’t even take decent pictures of your work. It’s eiteher too bright or too shadowed. Glare-tastic.

I’ll wrap up. The train is poised to come into Paris and I need to get on.

But I always love to have some planting done in the autumn.  There are more Perovskia Blue Spires in the Dry Garden and next week, when I get back, I’ll plant more cypresses in the steep bank above the pool.