The Old Hump Garden
The Hump used to be a rough, and inhospitable area of my garden. For years and years it had a rather chequered history. Ideas for development blossomed, withered, and died. Plants came and went, often relocated elsewhere. Paths were cleared and edged one year, decommissioned the next.
The Middle of the Hump
It's not the Hump's fault that it was in and out of favour and fashion with me. It was such a difficult area to work with - no irrigation, quite heavy shade from pine and gum trees, and poor sandy soil.
An Old Sand Dune...
The Hump is actually an old sand dune, running the length of the property above the house lawn. The pine and gum trees planted along its middle were the original shelter trees. Things got messy very quickly in here, with fallen debris from the trees. No gardener in a lazy, dreamy mood ever likes visiting a messy part of their garden!
The Hump Garden in Summer
But some of the planting ideas in The Hump have worked and stayed the distance. At one end, when several big trees fell down, letting in light, I planted lots of bargain bin Pittosporums. They quickly formed a thriving Pittosporum forest, which I just adore. Such pretty leaf textures and colours - if I was a garden fairy, this would be where I'd hang-out!
Some shrub ideas of mine worked well - like a grove of scruffy but much-loved green Cordylines. The path into the Hump at this end was edged with stones, to suggest some sort of garden destination. It came rather handy for wheeling barrowfuls of general garden rubbish, which I'd dump underneath the huge trees!
The Cordyline Grove
The other end of the Hump joins the back of the Shrubbery. I planted some rough toughies in here, like Agapanthus for ground-cover, Aralias, Olearias, and Genistas. And a garden bench nestled in the greenery, a secret place to relax in the sun. Not that there was much sun...
Genista in the Shrubbery
Again Pittosporums were nurtured and encouraged. I love these wonderful tree-shrubs for self-seeding and then growing in difficult gardening locations. Their leaves provide wonderful evergreen texture.
Tea Pot in the Shrubbery
Tea Pots and Gnomes...
In 2012 some teenage Eucalpytus trees behind the Shrubbery were felled. After the shock of being squashed by flying logs, existing shrubs (mainly Pseudopanax and Viburnyms) grew back nicely. The paths which still joined everything together were rather pretty, wiggling through Periwinkle and past garden gnomes and giant tea-pots.
But isn't periwinkle a nuisance weed? Not if it's happy to grow and flower in the Hump! Some would consider gnomes to be more annoying. Have a peep at the very last photograph on this page - you might just spot a pair of chaps lurking on a huge pine tree stump.
Oops. Many of my Hump make-overs didn't worked. One year I created a huge network of paths leading into the Hump from the Driveway Lawn. But they were over-fussy, and I had no motivation to use them. So I pulled out all the Agapanthus I'd planted, plus the path edging logs - they were pinched from the firewood pile, anyway.
Then came a dog-driven development. The dogs and I needed some long straight routes for our earliest morning walk/run. So I made two dog-paths along the length of the Hump, one following the row of Pines in the middle, the other following the new shelter belt below. They were very dusty, but they were dog=paths!
Success - for a while... All the dogs loved these long straight Hump paths, especially Escher the big brown dog. He would gallop along them, barking atr the pigeons who roosted in the high pine trees. Great early morning exercise! But gradually the debris from the gum trees built up, and the paths lost their charm - for me, anyway. And Escher was too easily distracted when the ram was in the front paddock, just through the fence...
The Shrubbery in the Hump
Update - 2018
Well, well, well. The Old Hump Garden is gone. Pouff! All the old shelter trees were felled in the winter of 2018, opening up a huge, sunny space for me to create a new Hump Garden. You can probably guess what happened next? Oh yes. Horse manure, mulch, then roses, roses, roses... New paths for the dogs to use. And enough firewood for the next ten winters, at least!