Garden School:


Garden School:
Teaching this week: Rose pruning (as always!) and water management

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

The Yard is finally mine...

Yes, folks, after a mere six weeks of alternately waiting patiently, and chasing impatiently, at last I have my licence and the Yard is officially mine, so I can start moving plants in.

As soon as I got the licence - last Friday - I took along a couple of trays of not-particularly-lovely plants and set them down on the ground, to see how my bunny-proofing would hold up.

Then yesterday - Monday - I went back to start installing rough benches etc for the plants to stand on, and all seemed well.


In fact, better than well - excellent - as over the weekend we finally had rain.

We had lots and lots of it, probably all the rain that we were supposed to have during April.

So the water trough was full!

All that hard work mending it has paid off, I now have a huge dipping tank of lovely free water.

Incidentally, I have found that a dipping tank is much quicker than a water butt, as you don't have to stand there and wait for the cans to fill.

At home I have two watering cans, so one stands under the butt, filling, while I am emptying out the other one. But it's always a bit tiresome, sometimes you have to wait, and sometimes you're a bit late and the one filling overflows.

Digression: when that happens, I rush to turn off the tap,exactly as though it were my expensive metered water that was being wasted! But this is my free water! Training, I guess.

So, back to the yard - I have found it best to have plants up on benches for many reasons - see the page marked The Search for the background. It helps reduce slug/snail damage, likewise ants and woodlice: it assists drainage and makes it less far to bend when checking them.

So today I filled my car with all the framework from my old plastic "greenhouse", having spent a bit of time in the back garden with a hacksaw, converting it into as many shelves as possible.

 I'd already taken a pile of spare old planks and bits of wood down there, so yesterday I spent a pleasant hour or so in the sun, knocking up benches without legs and propping them up on piles of bricks.

The bricks came free, there are piles of old ones lying around in various places, so I have borrowed as many as I needed!

The smart-looking green ones are part of my Kingston Bagpuize bench system, where I built benches in sections that would just fit inside my small car.

The others are all rough stuff!

But as no-one will be visiting me here, I don't plan to spend much time in making smart benches. I think it's better to spend my time getting the plants potted on into good 3litre pots ready for sale.

So there you go, big news, at last I'm in!

One general gardening comment for today, before I go - frost damage. My client this morning was all upset because the lovely willow bridge looked as though someone had been over it with a flamethrower.




I was able to reassure her that it's more likely to be the frost than some horrible disease,  especially when the truncated Ash next to the bridge looked similarly scorched, as did the top of the Wisteria arch round the other side...

So I just trimmed off the damage, to make it look better, and assured her that it will soon grow back.

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