Orchard bank update

longviewI’m not quite there yet. But I am so sick of trying to photograph this bank and failing that I have decided to shove the pictures out there. And be done.

There are about six versions of this shot in my folders on the laptop. Taken at different times of the day. And not one quite captures how large and imposing this bank is. So you will just have to take my word for it. Or start donating to my Learn to Be A Better Photographer Course.

lusheragrostisLast time we visited on these pages I had planted up the eragrostis grasses. And mulched.

I ran out of Alice’s wonderful mulch. But every time I mow I now empty the contents onto the gaps in between the plants on the bank.  And the gaps are slowing disappearing.

This is the look I’m aiming for. ..

lushsageeragrostisThis is the end of the bank planted up this time last year.  The sage cuttings I took over winter just aren’t quite ready to go out yet. So instead I did the filling in with my other mighty ‘taken from cuttings’ plant.  False dittany.


All the balotta (no, ballota, I am useless at trying to spell this plant) pseudodictamnus is in. Uprooted from the potager where they were enjoying a slow drip irrigation season in one of the many vegetable beds. I kept them in their long root trainer pots so it wasn’t too tricky to get them out and carry them down to their final spot.

I didn’t count how many went in. Silly me. But I think there were more than 40 plants. Some titchy, but they should be fine. I’ll water them fortnightly, lavishly. And mulch the soil and hope for the best.

arturtreeAnd in a month or so the sage will be ready and I can get them in too.

Here is Artur modelling the just-weeded area around a cherry tree.

He loves this bank. He knows he can chase the hose when I drag it over from the house. And he also knows he gets a great response from me when he starts at the top of the bank and slides all the way to the bottom upsetting my carefully positioned mulch around the baby plants.


Does shrieking equate to attention? In his mad world it does.

I even made time this past week to properly weed the middle section. It has the same grouping of eragrostis, ballota, sage; plus some lovely phlomis (I can’t get the seeds to germinate this spring, grrr) , some agastache (Korean mint) and even a few santolinas.

But it wasn’t watered as well as the first section. So at least with a proper weeding and mulching the plants here ought to do better.


Oh dear, you can see my leaning apple tree on the bank at the bottom of the shot.  My shame. Nicolas did come by when he was building my compost bins to do a fast prune of some of the baby apples.

I will have to be very patient with this orchard. The soil is poor.  And the hose hauling is damn hard work.


But at least it looks a whole lot better now it is landscaped.  And I have somewhere to offload my endless sacks of lawn mowing bits. Jolly good.