Tuesday, 10 May 2016


Today is Sunday and we have been to look at a garden at Tomsteads in Woodland. B and B saved us some excellent cake and a mug of tea before we walked around the seven acres - mostly wild garden, extensive water but good hard landscaping from B & B's son C. Tomsteads has otters - jealous! It is warm for May, 24C, and we sat out when we got back even though it had clouded over. No doubt it will be chilly again next week.

Sometimes a day can change abruptly - Monday and it starts with a planned haircut and visit to the doctor.  It is 25C and I mow the lower banking and at 12.30 - the highlight of the day - our first asparagus - wonderful steamed and dressed with a little melted butter. Things are looking up (I still have mot get my hair cut (it has gone quite white) and go to the Doc.

I have tried to grow new potatoes in sacks before and failed but seeing Monty Don do it on tv I thought I 
would have another go. The sacks are old wild bird seed containers and I have put several drainage holes in the bottom, put in some very well rotted horse manure (9 years old) and a potato - then covered it. They will need watering well and as the plant grows, topping up of the sack - a bit like earthing up. 

At this time of year the garden is awash with birdsong and down the garden a rhododendron we bought near Matlock several years ago is flowering and the garden is also awash with its scent.

I have cut about 40 sticks of rhubarb - R taking it to church to sell as we still have loads in the freezer from last year.

When we were at Ripley Castle recently we saw this shed on wheels and a rail - a bit like George Bernard Shaw's writing shed - so it can be turned to face the sun - well it could if the rail was not clogged up.

Back home the second amaryllis  has seven flowers and tulips from the cutting garden are a treat.

Down in the land of fruit and veg a brachyglottis (aka senecio) has died in its pot. The root had blocked the drainage hole and with all the rain this winter it drowned. It was difficult getting it out but having done that I put a box in the pot to be shaped at a later date.
The strawberries are flowering well and I must get out the straw to protect the fruit.

This is a Genista - a bit like a broom but more compact and scented. In fact it is out before the broom on the lower banking. I have moved the table and bench we got from Ikea out onto the paving though the side planks of the table are rotten and will need replacing. Another little job to add to the list for the joiner.

Sadly it is snowing on the lawn, but not cold - the cherries are shedding their petals.
R has just found a newt by the pond - I think a male common newt - Triturus vulgaris. Only trouble is it is dead. Nevertheless we introduced them few years ago and saw nothing - till now. If they escape predators like snakes and hedgehogs they can live for ten years! No newt like an old newt!

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