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{ Category Archives } garden

Garden Dominoes

I have a very steeply terraced garden, with the first terrace nearly as high as the house, and two more levels above that. When we moved in, the so-called “retaining walls” of each terrace were concrete slabs, held in place by friction. I remembered enough of my civil engineering classes to work out that the […]


I am not green-fingered by nature, and neither was Christopher. When we were thinking about buying this cottage, we were very wary about taking on the garden – and rightly so, as we really didn’t know what we were doing. However, one of the last things that Christopher planted in the garden before he fell […]

The Beast from the East

It’s cold. Very cold. I don’t think it’s got above freezing all week, and the strong winds from the east are making it feel even colder. But there’s not (so far…..) been a great deal of snow. We’ve had about a centimetre or so up here on the hills, and the roads have remained clear. […]

Nutter and Nuttette

Back in the Spring, I bought some bird feeders for the garden and hung them in the corner between the two bedrooms. That used to be a very boring part of the garden – other than an acer tree turning vaguely pink in autumn,  nothing much ever happened there. But since I started regularly restocking […]

Cucumelon Bonanza!

Cuthbert the Cucmelon really has come good. After several weeks of not producing anything, he’s now heavy with fruit. This is the first harvest of mini-fruits, and there’s at least as many again that should be ready by the weekend. Mind you, it was necessary to stand on a chair to pick them – he’s […]

Cuthbert’s Offspring

Cuthbert the cucumelon has been growing like mad, and producing hundreds of little proto-fruit about 1cm long with small yellow flowers on the end, like the one at the top left of the photo above. These then develop into small grape-sized fruits that look very like a small watermelon, as you can see. The trick […]

Cuthbert the Cucumelon

A few months ago, I read in the Sunday papers about a “new” plant that was being grown commercially in the UK for the first time, and would shortly be available from Waitrose. It sounded interesting  – a member of the cucumber/courgette family, with small sour fruit the size of a grape that look a […]

Daffodil Envy

On my way into work, I pass several banks and grass verges which are covered in daffodils. They look really lovely at this time of year. Try as I might, I simply can’t get daffodils to do well in my garden. Or crocuses either, for that matter. Christopher and I must have planted well over […]

Fuschia in December

It’s the week before Christmas and still extremely mild. I’m still using my summer-weight duvet, when normally by this time of the year I’m snuggling with a full 13-tog winter-weight quilt plus a blanket on top. My garden clearly has no idea of the seasons. I’m not entirely sure I can spell “fuschia”, but I’ve […]

Plant Catalogues

Plant Catalogues have started arriving through the post, trying to encourage me to splash out on plants and bulbs to plant this autumn. The photographs in the brochures are always alluring, and the prices often very attractive, but as always there is a catch. I got caught out this spring, when I fell for an […]