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Aspirations, Actuality, Accidents and the odd Achievement


By Buzzbee


Don’t get me wrong – I love gardening but it doesn’t always quite go to plan. So here are some of my mistakes.

Firstly, grasses are lovely and trendy but they are supposed to enhance the other plants, not screen them as you see here:

Secondly, all the garden designer guru peoples say if you have a little garden then don’t be afraid to grow big plants – so we decided not to be afraid – but then of course in a large garden with big borders these big plants all support each other – if you don’t want a garden that looks like its come straight from the Bamboo Cane Showroom then big plants tend to fall – our mullein hasn’t gone yet, but it’s heading there.

A third point often made is that we should contrast shapes and textures – not just focus on flowers – well sometimes we can just get a bit too carried away so instead of a garden calming you it induces a migraine:

Fourthly, be organic they say – so spend a small fortune on copper tape to protect your dahlias. Hmm.

Fifth – have a hot border. I envisaged this as a blaze of red colours – Crocosmia Lucifer, Nasturtium Empress of India, Californian Poppies – but somehow it just looks like a few red and orange plants stuck together instead of the fiery haze I hoped for.

Maybe if I get down low, it’ll look better?

And when I put it altogether I think, maybe I am just being a pretentious idiot trying to create a cottage garden feel in a council estate garden. Who am I kidding?

By now you could be forgiven for thinking I had a bad day in the garden. Well, actually no – I know my garden isn’t perfect, it has all kinds of flaws but I love it and I love pottering it. And what’s more, sometimes things work out really well. Sometimes by accident … these plum tomatoes came from a plant that just started growing from our compost and we dcided to keep.

And sometimes things happen according to plan – below you can see tomatoes coming that we intended and the cayenne peppers we received as seeds from Jacque earlier this year.

So, happy gardening everyone. It’s a wondrous thing.

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lol i left message under one of your photos, i quiet liked the pic of all the plants

26 Jul, 2008


Hi It sounds like you are having fun- The red border is looking interesting and you can always lift and divide plants to make room for more additions of red plants (e.g Red Hot Pokers )
Try planting in 'tiers' so that you have tall plants at the rear,medium in the centre and small plants in the front that cascade down to ground level..The large grass will be happy at the back of a border as its rather high for the front and its quite mature now, so it can be moved to a new location. The other point is you can always move and transplant some of the plants you are not happy with and move them to a new location.Try planting plants in groups of threes or other odd numbers so that you get a mass of colour or texture particularly if you want a colourful border. Often single specimens in a border get 'swamped' and lost, so bulk up the plants by adding more of the same.Dahlias always look better if you plant several of the same species or colours together.
Hope this helps, and best wishes and happy gardening.

26 Jul, 2008


I almost totally replanted my yellow border this spring as all the smaller plants seemed to be at the back and the larger ones at the front so we all get it wrong. Look at my recent picture of a border with blue, white and yellow flowers - it's taken at least three years to get it looking like this and I was still standing on a bit of bare soil to take the picture because the snails completely ate one plant. Maybe next year....

26 Jul, 2008


Hi Buzzbee - awwww, don't be so hard on yourself - it all looks good to me (but then I'm no gardening guru type person!) Every winter, something gets moved in my garden. Usually lots of things get moved - sometimes by only a few inches!

26 Jul, 2008


Me too - I move plants around due to making mistakes! We all do - I keep saying that no garden is ever finished. Think how boring that would be! Your Stipa looks so healthy, why not use it to create a bit of 'Prairie planting' with some Verbena bonariensis at the back of the border and you will be SOOOO fashionable as per Chelsea!!!! lol. Do NOT be despondent - you've had lots of successes and can 'tweak' the bits that don't satisfy you!

27 Jul, 2008

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