So far, 2016 has been the year of the kitchen renovation, sorting out some of the outside of the house and the gardens. We spent from January to May on the kitchen and April to June on the paving in the courtyard which meant that we actually had the time and space to start on the garden properly. I only got round to taking some photos of the garden in the autumn just when it was probably past it’s best. Now it’s coming onto winter, it’s back on to the bathrooms.
SO what have we done in the garden?
When we moved in, the garden was a big overgrown mess of unruly Ivy, rampant trees and very very little in the way of existing plants…here it is in Autumn 2014 nice.
We started by making some beds either side of the path, getting trees trimmed and crown lifted, gettting the railings installed, had the house painted, paving and re-seeded lots of bare patches of lawn, which is making things a lot better:
And where are we at now?
We’ve weeded and re-planted the front bed, also added a few more boulders that we found round the garden. There’s a mix of plants – Heucheras, Hydrangeas, Helibores, Choisyas, Cornus, Viburnam and we’re trying a cherry tree. Basically a mix of foliage and evergreens for Autumn colour, mixed with summer flowers – oh and loads of bluebells! These are all quite young plants – so next year it should look very pretty.
The side of the house has been sorted out, by reclaiming the beds at the side and planting more in front of the house. This is more Heucheras, Salvias, Roses, and Fuchsias, together with random plants that haven’t worked elsewhere in the garden and have been moved here to see if they do better with a bit more sunshine.
In the bed under the window to the front of the house – we’re focusing on pinks, purples and reds. We have discovered this bed is both really sunny but also really dry as it is shaded by the roof above the oriole window. This has meant that we’re still really experimenting with the planting. Heucheras, Sedums, Acers and Euphorbias are happy – the Hydrangeas less so. We’ve also planted climbing roses either side of the porch (hence the trellis), these will really come into their own and start climbing next year!
The other bed under the front window has been great. The hydrangeas are really happy, and I’m still experimenting with other perennials. These Holyhocks seemed to do well, so maybe we’ll try a few more next year
And finally under the Beech tree, we’ve made a Stumpery (It’s really shady and dry here in the summer, and lovely and light before the trees get their leaves in the spring). This currently consists of lot’s of old tree trunks and stumps scavenged from neighbours and the local park. I bought loads of different ferns including some from Shady Plants, as well as planting more bulbs – there are already lots of bluebells planted here. The bamboo canes are so that I don’t lose the little ferns over the winter and spring and end up standing on them!
We’re still buying the majority of our plants from Leeds City Council Red Hall Nursery. Great place, much cheaper than the big garden centres, but you do need to go back as the year goes on because they change their stock to match the seasons.