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The trials & tribulations of a new gardener - Part 2


Ok so for years I have been told that I am exactly the same as my mother. To be honest it has never really bothered me, she’s my best friend so it’s only natural we’re very similar. Also another bonus is that people couldn’t jehst me ‘oooooooh you’re finally turning into your mother you know’. However I have today realised something very peculiar. ‘I am turning into my grandmothers’ Plural, both of them!

Now again this is not something I am bothered about. My Nanna’s are fabulous women. Great company and women that can make me belly laugh better than any of my friends! Now what has made me realise this? I’m getting garden nosey! I find myself walking past peoples gardens staring whilst declaring at the top of my voice ‘oh isn’t that garden gorgeous’ Or if I see a beutiful plant popping up over a fence I find myself wishing I could see the whole garden. Both my Nanna’s are guilty of this and it is something I used to tell them off for. I have found myself saying to them hundereds of times’ ‘Nanna will you please stop staring’ or ‘Nanna we don’t need a running commentry on every garden on the street you know’. And now I do it! So there you go, I’m more like them than I knew, now I too will laugh when my kids tell me off for commenting on how lovely someone’s Bearded Iris’ are whilst craning my neck to see what the rest of their garden is like.:O)

So back to my garden, I’ll start with the patio and slate garden. I am going to take you on a tour of my rather small back garden. Now I am apprehensive about sharing all of it. The paint work is so shabby and the patio needs re-pointing but then again we all have to start somewhere and it will be nice to look back on these blogs and see how far it’s come along!

So here we go, again if you feel inspired or think an idea I have wont work please let me know. Any advice is much appreciated!

I’ll start with the Rhododenron that lives by the front door. It has never ever seemed happy or flowered despite repotting, re-postioning, feeding and dedheading! I am going to bite the bullet and plant it in the gorund along the border in the slate garden.

Ok so on to the border in the slate garden. The first pic shows the first half and the second pic the other half of the border. The Rhododenron will be put between the faerie queen and the lavetera in the second pic. My climber, I am waiting for Dad to put a new trelis up as this climber that I thought was clematis has turned out to be honeysuckle and has really got going.

Ok so a few of my pots that I planted bulbs in have started to show greenery but no flowers yet. May I asked a question, the round green pot with the tall shoots coming out, are they weeds?

Now along the right hand side of the slate garden I am in desperate need of decorative ideas. For someone with an over active imagination I am stumped with what to do with this area. I am considering a series of arches with various climbing plants and roses with lovely seats under them?

Ok and now the patio that I will be re-pointing this weekend………………hopefully.

Now this is where I’m up to with this area. There still so much to be done but I think when the fences are painted along with the woodwork on the garage and the patio is re-pointed it will be quite a relaxing place to relax.

Now all there is to do is document all my plans and progress in here……………

Once again thanks for taking the time to read my ramblings.

Happy Gardening :O)

More blog posts by misscupcake

Previous post: The trials & tribulations of a new gardener - Part 1

Next post: The trials & tribulations of a new gardener - Part 3



Hello misscupcake! That was a lovely wee ramble! ;0) I'm only joking! You're coming on in leaps and bounds as far as I can see, you've really got it tidied up beautifully, and sometimes that's half the battle! Right! Going to bombard you with wee questions! Just to get my head straight you understand?! Not being!
Are you painting your fences with preservative or are you using a colour? I might be tempted to paint the willow at the hedge a really dark colour so it's not so visible, maybe match it to the colour of the hedge and then carry on with the picket, over the willow fence, so the fence at the far end and the right hand side match? Does that make any sense? I think it would be really cute! Are you looking for cute? Does the right hand side of your garden get much sun during the day? Is it really shady? Where does the sun rise and set? Is there soil beneath your slate, because if you want climbing roses, I've found that they are much happier in open ground. You could certainly try one, but it would need a big tall pot, roses have a tap root, like a big carrot, so they are happiest where they can root down into deep soil. Mind you that big hedge will have impoverished the soil hugely, so it would need a good load of new compost and as my friend calls it- 'nure!
You might consider some clipped Box balls or cone shapes in pretty terracotta pots, with a nice long bench in the middle, and the arches sound lovely, or you could have a table and chairs, but maybe that would be better on the flagstone area, flip! there are loads of things you could do! You should have a look on Goypedia, try 'P' for patio or 'S' for seats, 'A' for arbours and arches! etc...the world's your oyster...yuck, I hate oysters, why did I write that? Berk! Anyhoo, there's loads of inspiration on the Goypedia, have a look, it's the alphabet running along the bottom of the page. I'll have another think about ideas too, this is just drivel off the top of my head! We'll speak again soon, Mcc, hope I haven't bored you too much, zzzz ;0)

14 Jun, 2011


As to the paved patio area, I would be inclined to chip out the old morter, filling with small pea gravel & try to encourage moss . Creates a bit of 'character'....
Just personal taste. Have fun ;-)

15 Jun, 2011


or she cud put allpines in the cracks .......... or creeping time , smells divine ........... patio roses prob be ok in pots as they small , and look gud grouped together .
i would tend to do picket fence white as i personally like the cottage look !! and a lovely seat with an arbour with honeysuckle round it

15 Jun, 2011


Those plants in the round green pot from what i can see look like sunflowers have you had sunflowers before? they can self set or if a bird has dropped some seed they will pop up! I think your garden is lovely i like the slate nice colour and the round stepping stones :o)

15 Jun, 2011


Wow! Nearly missed this blog Cupcake :)
What brill ideas and advice from Libet, Cliveanne, Cristina and Sewingkilla :)
Not much more for me to add, only's your garden, so you must do what makes you happy, try things out, learn from your mistakes, be as wacky and creative as you like, but above all create a space that reflects your personality...then your garden will be unique and have the "X Factor":))

PS. And are turning into your mother and your grandmothers....;) Lol x

15 Jun, 2011


Lovely blog and the garden is looking really good:)

15 Jun, 2011


Hello sorry for the late reply I've been on a 14 hour shift today :O(

LoL Libet your mind seems to work the same as mine :O) Ok to answer your questions: sun rises on the left so right hand side gets sun until about 16:00ish and then moves around to the right and in front of the house) so the opposite side, the left gets the remainder of the sun which in the winter isn't much. Ok the fences I have bought a Ronseal dark brown stain for my two gates at the front, all of my fence panels and little side gate so they match. Now as for the picket fence I have bought a lovely willow green stain that I am also going to use on the wood fascia on the garage, which I plan to grow a wisteria on. I have never thought about painting the willow screening but to be honest I was worrying that it might fade next year and need replacing so I could paint it like you say. There is soil under the slate as this area used to be grass. We used weedkiller on the area about a year ago so it should be ok to use with lot's of compost and 'nure' :O). I like your idea of benches so need to think about that and consider maybe doing it. I really want to add some height to the area and have plants that the dog can't get to. Maybe loads of different clematis? Then again I really want an arbour, a pond, arches, benches.................decisions, decisions, maybe this is a project for next year. Thank you so much for all your suggestions and taking the time to help. Like you say the worlds my Oyster (yuk they are gross) and there's millions of ideas on here and I am going to Tatton and Malvern this year so may get a load of ideas there too?

Cliveanne - I do like the idea of pea gravel, would it stop the weeds coming through?

Cristina you read my mind lol. I have planted campanula in the slate. I have loads of Patio roses and I too love the cottage look........hence why I'm jealous of your garden! I love white picket fences but really fancied something a bit different so have gone for a willow green. We'll see how it turns out :O)

Sewingkilla - thank you so much, my Mum and Dad treated us to the slate last year :O) I have never had sun flowers but I planted some bulbs in that pot but can't remember which ones lol. I got the same thing last year in some pots but never got any flowers.

Haha thanks Di and Nana D :O)

15 Jun, 2011


Oh blast! My iPad is running out of juice...and no flipping' charger, I'm not at home! Willow green for picket fence sounds lurvely! Did the outside of our porch that colour last year! Clematis sound brill too, what about those lovely iron pyramids, or if your Dad's handy, build them out of wood and trellis them and paint them willow green too? Oh no...1% battery left...arghhh..I'll post again tomorro

15 Jun, 2011


Haha Libet good ideas once again. My poor Dad he has a list as long as his arm of things I want :0)

16 Jun, 2011


"Cliveanne - I do like the idea of pea gravel, would it stop the weeds coming through?"

You would have to put some weed control matting or other barrier down first. You would not have to remove the slabs if you can push the matting between them. I has worked for me in the past. I used up some old builder's plastic sheeting, using a mallet & some old doweling, I forced the plastic between the slabs then covered the plastic....It lasted for years.

27 Jun, 2011


hun next time you are here i can give you a few spreaders from my garden .............. x

27 Jun, 2011


Aw thanks Cristina :O) x

Cliveanne - thanks that's fab advice I'll definitely try that :O)

27 Jun, 2011

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