It is high summer. We’ve had some very fine weather but also brumous days when the mist and clouds merge and don’t lift all day, and smuggy days when the humidity hits hard and strong. But we have escaped the fiercest temperatures of this month. There are occasional compensations for living in an area that is wetter, milder and more temperate than most. Continue reading “The View from Here: colours of July”
This year we seem to have been dancing back and forth, dallying between the seasons on a daily basis.
Since April arrived, we have been thrust back into winter. Those balmy February days which turned my head and had me harbouring thoughts of an early spring seem a long way back. Continue reading “The View from Here: snatches of spring”
There is something in the air on this final February Saturday. The light is bright; the sky is clear. There’s a strength to the sun that belies this shortest of months. There is birdsong on the wing and between the leafless branches. Into the blue falls the sharp mewl of buzzards, too high to be easily spotted but proclaiming their presence with haunting calls which shred the air like darts and remind me of my small place against this wide empty sky. Continue reading “Who Killed Cock Robin?”
The view from here was much changed, but as ever, the passing of time has softened the blow.
bright orange California poppies with the vivid blue-purple of geranium Bill Wallis growing through
I have focused on three small projects over the summer, whilst we wait to see what the garden will reveal to us. They each remain works in progress and have met with varying degrees of success. This is the most successful of the three – the eastern garden. Continue reading “August in the Garden: project no. 1”
On a dull day the blooms shine brightly
A tall, bushy, yellow-green conifer grows to roof height: marking the start of a tangled terrace that runs along the back of the house. The conifer itself is massive, looming large in the western garden. I’m not a fan of conifers but I like this one. It’s well-positioned: breaking up the view to the west and contributing to the sense of a secret garden beyond it. We park our cars between the house and this conifer, so from the secret garden the conifer hides the cars as well as the bulk of the house. Continue reading “August in the Garden: the conifer”
I suspect we’re in for some serious work in this eastern stretch
We don’t have a front and a back garden. The house is positioned roughly midway between the east and western perimeters so we have two side gardens. Because you have to pass through it to get to the house, the westward space might be thought of as the front garden, which makes the eastern stretch by default into the back garden. Certainly it has the appearance and feel of a more conventional family garden. I seem to have written several times about the area to the west; it’s time I redressed the balance. Continue reading “July in the garden: looking eastwards”
Perhaps some water here; and maybe a naturalistic statue
The secret garden lies behind the enormous conifer to the west of the house.
For me this unobtrusive area of lawn has a very female aura. Continue reading “June in the Garden: the secret garden”
Now I could absorb … the faded glory of the earliest blooms – already past their prime and thus already in that wonderful blowsy, bleached state of unkempt, vintage splendour: their last hurrah
We have roses: baby pink, deep yellow, fiery red. And a lilac: I’d not even realised we had a lilac until I saw its lanky, lazy purple-tipped blooms. A clematis; huge, pink rhododendrons … A week of dry, warm weather and the garden is showing us its summer garb. Continue reading “June in the Garden: an evening stroll”
Half the interest of a garden is the constant exercise of the imagination.
And so to my early plans for the garden. Perhaps because they’re the first things one sees, but most probably because it is here that spring-time has given us the most to enjoy thus far, I find it’s the welcoming banks along the drive that have claimed my attention and imagination. Continue reading “May in the Garden: all along the banks”