Pot and Flax
I'm having problems choosing suitable garden ornaments. I am not confident to choose something artistic, not creative enough to make one myself, not rustic enough for a wagon-wheel, and not classical enough for a statue. One large pot that I like is shaped like a supersized sewer pipe... Oops...
Sunday 5th August
We've had 33mm of rain over the last 24 hours. This morning is naturally damp, but fine, and I am allowed a whole hour for hot tea, toast, and twitter. Yesterday in the rain I wrote up more of my visits to Scotland's finest gardens. The photographs were so sunny and colourful, compared with the ones I'm taking at the moment.
The Pot Problem
Today I have to grapple with the Purchasing of the Pot Problem. I love the supersized sewer pipe (not really, but that's the general shape) I saw yesterday. It is neither elegant nor romantic, looking like a piece of junk left lying around. But this could actually fit with the random style of my garden. An easy planting would be a fat red fountain Cordyline, sprouting out the top.
Today the garden needs a list. I am so close to finishing so many different things...
- Finish the Hen House paths.
- Finish planting the roses.
- Finish pruning the orchard roses.
- Finish pruning the Dog-Path Garden roses.
- Finish clearing opposite the Welcome Garden.
Firstly I will go and feed the hens, who are laying again, and clean out their house. It takes seven of us to feed the chooks every morning - me, two big cats, three kittens, and the dog. Fluff-Fluff thunders along the top of the water race - he needs to be first, closely followed by Percy the ginger kitten who bounces up and over the tussocks. All other animals take the path. When we arrive there is general squeaking from the trees above. I am obviously feeding lots of sparrows, starlings and blackbirds as well.
Fluff-Fluff the Gardening Cat
Monday 6th August
Back to yesterday. I finished about 75% of 50% of the items on my list, and then went racing off to the rose nursery to buy more standard roses (Rhapsodies in Blue), thus creating at least 10% more work. If this irresponsible behaviour was to be generalised into a mathematical formula - aargh! The words 'exponential growth' comes to mind! Taking things a step further:
A Gardening Formula
Let N be the number of days left until I turn eighty-five (chosen arbitrarily), let H be the number of hours, on average, I can garden each day, and let X be the daily hours needed, on average, to finish all gardening work. I can easily see a scenario where X is horribly greater than 24, and I still haven't hit sixty. Ouch.
Rhapsody in Blue
Mathematics aside, I worked really hard yesterday, for five hours. There were more roses to prune in the Dog-Path Garden than I ever thought possible, and I kept getting distracted, stooping down to weed, or divide and replant daylilies, or shovel in wet ash. I did a major prune on the Hypericum which flowered madly just this autumn, and pulled out at least a hundred gorse seedlings.
- 'Gardening is a never-ending list of things that are never finished.'
- -Moosey's Advice to Self.
Gardening is a never-ending list of things that are never finished. Today I promise to start finishing the list of things to be finished! At least all new plants (hebes and roses) could be lovingly installed in the moist dirt. Then I could buy some new cheap pots of perennials! Eek! Some gardeners never learn...
Oops. I called into a new nursery on my way home from swimming, just to check prices. Then I got into a really naughty mood.
I now have the following extra plants: two more random climbing roses for the orchard, a random pink shrub rose, three little Santilinas, three little Helianthus plants, and one Lavatera Curly, which is like Lavatera Barnsley but smaller, with creamy white flowers. Now I really must go planting, or else... Or else what? I definitely need a deterrent. Vacuum the house? Wash my car?
It's like I have a cute little gardening devil sitting on my shoulder, whispering in my ear: Go on! Buy some! Why not? Being sensible is boring. And you wouldn't want to become boring, now, would you... I wish that little critter would tell me to stop being analytical and just buy the supersized sewer pipe!
I've almost finished planting. I have definitely finished pruning. The new Rhapsody in Blue garden is planted, with the rose standards and new perennials firmly in place. The little path is now ready for wood shavings. The Hazelnut Orchard archway roses are finally all pruned - what a horrible job! And now there are no gaps - my last new climbers are planted to help the ungainly Gloire de Dijons be a bit more glorious.
So tomorrow all I have to do to finish my list is do the paths, shift three lavenders out of the Hen House Garden and replace them with three hebes, and plant the Scabrosa roses along the fence opposite the Welcome Garden. Sorry to keep repeating things, but I'm trying to settle myself down.