Vertical gardening

strimmed above courtyardHow on earth do you strim these steep slopes?  I don’t have a photo of the rather punk style terrace that I finished this afternoon. It’s way way down the farm right next to the road.   And trudging down there with strimmer, spare petrol, loppers, gloves and helmet meant I didn’t have any spare room for dying camera.   It’s lens won’t open.

And it wouldn’t have been a fetching picture anyway.   The slope is so steep that I can stand on the flat and get it halfway cleared, but can’t balance on one leg and try and strim the top bits.   And there is a deep culvert in the way as well to trap the unwary strimmer.   So the bank is half shorn and half long with brambles, grass and bracken.   A very punk look indeed.

And the mistake I made was to even think of doing it in the first place. I had already done an hour up closer to the house – taking all the dead growth of the hundreds of festuca glauca grasses that lurk in the bank just above the courtyard.   I positively crawled back up the mountain and had a very poor night of back pain as a reward. artur and sage

I had been in denial about that bank for months. It’s amazing how you just don’t look up at things you can’t fix.   A bit like ignoring spider webs on ceiling walls.   But now the terrace is a picture of tidyness and I can gaze at it happily again.   It needs some proper landscaping. One day.

artur contemplating plantsI spent the rest of the afternoon happily sowing seeds in potting shed. And generally coming to the conclusion that the shed does not belong to me: it’s Artur the cat’s home now.   He has three separate sleeping spots according to where the sun lies during the day.   And half the time I have to leave the door ajar in the evening as he has settled down so well he won’t leave.   Cat flap? Oh yes, I put one in and he studiously ignores it.   He is not the sort of cat to skulk in small gaps. He likes to stalk in the front door.

artur asleep on sageHere he is surveying my seedlings.   And chosing to sleep on some sage leaves that I was going to dry for herbes de provence. So much for that plan. It will be herbe de chat when he gets through with it.