Thursday, 21 June 2007

A Day's Hard Labour

Have just looked in here and found several comments I didn't know about! Thanks to one and all. I hope that HB comes back in time to see her picture on yesterday's (20th June) front page. If not, I shall post it again when the weight of gardening eases.

This is just an account of a day's gardening - I haven't the energy to do a further walk.

I can't keep up with everything coming out - I suppose it is always the same at this time of year, but it always takes me by surprise!

The dreadful weather last week put an end to the Paeonies and one of my jobs today was to cut off the dead heads, with a lot of soggy petals hanging about all gone brown.

First job before that was to empty my barrow, which G had filled with very nasty manure that he collected from the road. It was dropped by the farmer clearing a barn where he had beasts during the winter. It had sat through the .6inch of rain that fell the night before last so was very soggy and the bad smell was agravated! The Lord alone knows what he has been feeding the beasts but it must be something nasty!! Also it is completely raw straw with urine and not much proper muck. I didn't show any of the gratitude that was clearly expected!! Anyway, it is now sitting in a shapely heap giving off its perfume.

Cut a few sweet peas for the third time this year. In the past they weren't out till G's birthday on 24th July. They are a cheat this year as I bought plants as I failed to sow them. Much better plants I regret to say, but not the ones I would have chosen.

Raised the string supporting the Broad Beans. Some of the mass of flowers on them were looking pretty soggy and no bumble bees polinating - I hope they haven't all been drowned in their holes. We had masses before the rain. No sign of set beans yet, but here's hoping.

Also raised the string holding the CD's over the peas. They had got lost in the vigorous growth, so not doing their job. No flowers there yet.

Then I got slap happy with the secateurs. A beautiful palest mauve Abutilon, probably mentioned on a walk, is now almost fully out and has survived the rain. The shrubs on either side are growing hard, so I cut them back hard and now the Abutilon can be seen properly.

There are 2 or 3 places where paths are really too narrow, or rather, I planted too vigorous things too near on either side. When ever we get really wet weather, it brings the new growth down so that you get soaked if you need to go by. The secateurs did good work here, but I won't know whether it was good enough till it rains again.

Then, after lunch, round to the yard by the back door. The Lilac flowered very well this year but it needed cutting back a little. It is a very necessary wind-break so I never want to cut off too much but Lilacs do better if they are cut quite hard. I hope I managed a happy medium. I cleared up some of my rubbish, but the lovely G had said he would do some of it, so I just took one barrowful to the bonfire. (A bit of a hike)

Then into the front garden. Found that the dreaded dead-heading of roses had to start. The Old English roses are just beginning to come out, so only one to cut off there. Isfahan is coming on well and there was a bit of work to do there. After several years, it is making quite a feature, on its support. Climbing roses on the front of the house needed tidying as did an ancient white rose on the garden wall and a Penelope ditto. A number of years ago I planted a Russian Vine against the West-facing wall of the garden, which was beating back the terrible winds we suffer from. I suppose it does its job, but it really is a thug! Sometimes it hangs over the outside of the wall, which is nice but then along comes an east wind and tips it all back, leaving it looking horrid! The current vigorous growth has hidden the last 'tip' and is beginning to grow back over, but there was a lot to cut off, to keep it in its bounds. By the time I had done it, and taken it to the bonfire I was very weary, so that was my lot for today.


Pondside said...

Wow, Withy, you have been very busy! Loved your tale of the donated manure!
I drop by your site regularly to see if there might be another garden tour on offer. I love them!

Suffolkmum said...

You must be tired! Sound like quite a day. Muy peonies lasted all of about 4 days, with this mad weather. My sweet peas aren't out yet though.

Cait O'Connor said...

My peonies need sorting too, they did last quite a while this year. Everything is coming out isn't it? It seems a very good year for roses. I enjoy reading about your garden,

Himalayan Blue said...

You put me to shame! I am tired just reading your blog! No sorry, I didn't get here in time to see the photo ... can you put it up again? Will try to log in for the next few days just in case! It has been a bad year for peonies I spent ages in someone's garden last week staking them and tying them in, but most of the blooms had gone mushy.

Himalayan Blue said...

It's me again! I went to the archive and saw my pic! Thank you they are lovely and cheered up my day. Lots of purple hugs to you too!

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry it's taken me so long to get to you! Anyway, here I am, not that it makes much difference!

Northumberland is a beautiful county, just as nature intended. I sometimes wish I had 'green fingers' but I haven't got enough patience. I have tried this year however, to make an effort with my tubs. Unfortunately, the pup and the weather won them over. It'll be back to the garden centre for some more, and the pup is banned!
Crystal xx