Our second week in the garden has been rather frustrating. We wanted to finish getting the ready to create our vegetable beds, but it has been maddeningly difficult do that, when we can’t go to the dump because of the coronavirus lockdown. We have been creating a huge pile of rubbish, including several barrowfuls of heavy clay soil, and some unwanted flint chippings.
We have also been waiting impatiently to buy a double composting bin, or the wood to build one, some compost for the vegetable beds, some wood chippings for paths, some seedlings and a young fruit tree. We’ve been phoning our local garden centre on a daily basis, only to hear the ‘engaged’ signal.
Despite these set-backs, we have made some progress. Firstly I’m pleased to report that the hydrangeas are thriving in their new position.
Down at the bottom of the garden, we’ve removed the dwarf privets and an old rose bush, making room for a new fruit tree which we want to train on the fence. We haven’t decided what tree to grow yet, but we’re thinking of an apple tree. We are still working on this area – there are some persistent weeds to do battle with, and there are lots of waste flint chippings to get rid of.
We’ve just created a temporary compost heap. I’ve been reading quite a lot about composting. I’ve been learning about getting the right balance between green and brown waste, and monitoring the temperature. We’ve decided to build two bins, three foot square, next to each other. We’ve started on the first bin, using some old timber to mark out the size. There is rain expected tomorrow, so we’ve put a tarpaulin over the top as a short term covering.
The biggest change has been the area by the house, where we are clearing an area to site our shed. We plan to move our old wooden shed to this spot as a temporary measure, but it would be great to have a new shed one day. In the corner there used to be an old aluminium tool shed.
It was quite a job to dismantle it. The aluminium parts were pliable, but the nuts and bolts holding it together were rusted on. After revisiting it several days with a can of WD40 a screwdriver and a pair of pliers, I gave up. Eventually my husband Mike had to use a saw and a cold chisel to break the screws off. It had become a huge bugbear, so we were very relieved to see the back of it today. We’ve stacked all the bits behind the wooden shed for now.
As you can see, we’ve pretty much finished digging up the old raised bed in this corner. We’ve gone down to just below ground level, and we’ve shifted all the clay laden soil out of the way. We still need to drill out the inexplicably huge mysterious lump of concrete, and get rid of the brick base of an old wall. Then we can extend the patio to create a proper foundation for the shed.
So here’s a pair of before and after photographs of the garden (sorry about the washing!)