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The plan

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My next step with the garden is to plan. And I have a few… I have to admit I was dreaming up ideas for our garden long before we moved in.

So here is a list of what I would like to achieve:

-Making the garden safe for our toddler is my top priority.

-We need to do some fence maintenance.

-Pruning and working out what we actually have in the garden. I think I am going to have to start a log book so I can remember. It’s a bit of a mystery until spring and then probably a until a full year has passed, but I’m trying to work it out. It’s a fairly established garden, which is nice as we can enjoy it already, but it does also mean it’s not a blank canvas and we need to work around some established plants or be brutal.

-Sorting and reorganising my allotment gear. Which has been put into our shed… in a bit of a crazy pile. (Moving an allotment is not an easy job!!) But the shed smells very authentic; just like my grandpas did.

-Working out a general plan for the space. Involving a greenhouse (this is realistically something for next year) and creating growing space for veg and flowers….

-Sorting out the soil. Whilst the garden has been cared for, it lacks the beautiful soil I achieved at the allotment. You don’t have to dig far to hit clay and rocks. Raised beds and lots of digging are on the agenda.

-A diy ‘mud kitchen’ for our toddler.

-Location for my hammock!! Although I have no idea where the bolts or actual hammock are since we moved!!

-A small child friendly wildlife pond. Bug hotel, nesting boxes and feeders.

-Pots and pots and pots for my dream container patio situation.

-I need to remove some brambles although I think they will be my new garden foe. I like the fruit, but the spikes less!

I’m also expanding my seed sourcing. Discovering chiltern seeds via an insta explore. Which has made me realise that we need proper garden plan as my ideas are running a bit wild. So I need to focus and I need to get going.

Saturday morning seed hunting

I’m feeling a little overwhelmed with the ‘garden’, but I think it’s a ‘jump in a crack on’ situation. Need to remind myself nothing is permanent and the learning has to start somewhere. I’m looking forward to the clocks changing as some evening gardening can start!

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Bloom or bust is back!

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Hello, it’s been a while!

It’s been a busy few years; but having finally achieved the ultimate dream. Having our very own garden! If you follow my Instagram you will know that we said goodbye to my lovely allotment (as we moved areas). We also sold our flat and bought a house… funny how I focus on the allotment and garden. We are now ready to start the next part of our journey!

This is my first photo of the garden. We had the sunniest moving

So the real task begins to ‘get to know’ the garden and to make it ours. I loved using this blog for every stage of my garden adventure from balcony-to my allotment -and now ‘grown up’ garden! Marking my ideas, thoughts, trials and tribulations!

My focus has shifted from my allotment for the past few years when our son arrived. And he became the ‘project’ and will obviously always be the ongoing master project! So the gardening and growing obsession has taken a bit of a back seat, but…. it has never stopped. Having started him at the allotment from a young age he is a good trainee in the making and is not afraid to get his little hands dirty! If only they made gardening gloves for 2 year olds!!

Here is my assistant.

I love being outside and working hard to achieve a goal, it’s probably the challenge I enjoy the most. ‘Cheesy’ I know but I’m excited to see what we can achieve in our new garden.

The new, not new garden:

We looked and looked ….and looked for houses, and it was not easy to get our flat sold in the first place. But I think we got lucky and found a gem of a house with a good sized garden!

We have only been ‘in’ a few months, moving at the end of last year. Although we saw the garden in the middle of summer it had been hot and the garden was understandably a little neglected. But you can see it’s been loved and nurtured by the previous owners.

One of my favourite plants is a mature wisteria. Which has been trained over an arch. I have tried to give it an ‘over winter’ prune, without being to brutal. It would be great to get some advise please.

Now it is getting warmer we are starting to see the signs of spring. Lots of bulbs and shoots are popping up all over the garden. But at this stage my knowledge is seriously lacking on ‘garden’ plans. So I am trying a soft approach in some areas ; whilst I learn….combined with heavy handed approach in more forgiving areas of the garden. It’s not an easy balance. Also finding the time to really give the garden attention is really a challenge. I’m looking forward to lighter evenings and lots of bbqs!

Garden treasures:

We had a few in the garden!!! A rusty lawn roller, wheel barrow and various paving slabs, bricks and sand… not to mentions large pots were also left as garden treasure. Being an allotment scavenger at heart… this made me pretty happy! I now have 3 compost bins!!! Not to mention a gnome, mermaid and a duck garden ornament!! And a garden bench which has already been well used.

The unlikely couple!

July-August- September post!

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I stated writing this post a few months ago!…. Better late than never!

I have been off WordPress a bit of late. But the plot is still growing away, as is my own little (or rather big) side project. The baby bump!!

This post is a big overview of the year.

– Potatoes in the big bed grew well. We harvested these around the end of September. And this year we got them before the slugs! They turned out much better than expected considering I hadn’t given them much love. The potatoes in the waterlogged bed did grow, just not as much or as big. Next year I will need to find another way to drain my willow soaking pool, rather than just letting the water run into the beds.

-Tomatoes greenhouse and outdoor… Did well. But again a little tlc and they would have cropped longer and better. As always my greenhouse plants did the best.

-I also grew cucumbers and peppers in my greenhouse. Which did well.

-I grew some sunflowers to cut this year. They turned out great as just kept on flowering away all summer. And made lovely gifts to a lucky few! I also grew some big sunflowers…. Can’t have a plot without a few monsters!

-My tradition sweetpeas grew away nicely. But I’m determined to make them last longer. Lots of water?

– I also grew borage, wildflowers and some other companion flowers this year.

-My mini squash looked great, but gave up in the hot weather. I got two fruits… So it’s a start! They looked very pretty when growing away so I will try again next year.

– My beetroots did well. But got nibbled before I could get to them.

– Courgettes were a disaster this year. Just didn’t and didn’t want to know. They usually grow like weeds!

– Strawberry plants had there first year in a new bed. Hopefully next year they will show off!

-Raspberry plants were a bit sad this year. I didn’t cut back hard enough and I noticed a big improvement when I did! Next yearbook will be harsh on my lovely plants!
We cleared the plot and greenhouse down for autumn a little early this year. Next stop is manure spreading :).

Then we can start fresh in New year… With a brand new extra set of hands! I suspect he won’t come out with gardening gloves in hand…. But given a few years!

Raspberry plants via post, and Fridays botanical day dream!

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My 9 Raspberry plants have been dispatched! Im very excited as;
A. I have actually been organised enough to order them at the right time of year! Although I doubt we will get fruit this year…. It’s a start!
B. This is the first live plant I have ordered in the post.
C. I have a big gap in my plot… It’s always nice to look like you have a plan at the plot!
D. It’s a full season collection so hopefully it will feed me with raspberry goodness all season!
Fingers crossed they arrive today! As I have a long weekend of allotment love planned, and it would be great to get them in!!

Now onto the day dream….
Being raspberry inspired I also saw these lovely illustrations

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I love botanical drawings, and was even thinking a botanical tattoo might be nice. When I was on my art foundation course I was lucky enough to visit the botanical vaults (prabably not the correct name but that’s what they were, and it was behind the scenes!) at the natural history museum. It was a good few years ago now, but they let me look at pressed plants and flowers that had been collected by explorers from all over the world… Think…. Captain Cook. It was amazing and very inspiring, and looking back now I was very lucky!!

It’s funny when you look back, and you realise you prabably like growing plants and veg for all sorts of funny reasons!

Potato sunbathing!

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Our potatoes arrived the week before last (yippee!)… As I’m sharing half with my mother, she kindly offered to chit them on her super sunny window sill! Hopefully they will get a flying start! Here they are sunbathing!! Oh for the life of a potato!

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Potatoes at the ready!

We ordered:
Potato ‘Rocket’ (First Early)
Potato ‘Pentland Javelin’ (First Early) Boiling as a salad or new potato.
Potato ‘Lady Christl’ (First Early)  Potato ‘Kestrel’ (Second Early)
Potato ‘Desiree’ (Early Maincrop)
Potato ‘Cara’ (Late Maincrop)

In previous years I have gone a bit wild on poatoes. Only having a half plot I usually run out of space!! So this year we have hopefully ordered a sensible amount of potatoes.

Going for the Easter weekend as a good potatoes in date… I think that’s the potato law?! Right?

I’m looking forward to the coming weekend dig! Fingers crossed it’s a sunny one! 🌞

Snow and welly boots!

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It’s Tuesday and I am already thinking of the weekends allotment potential. I had to stay away from the plot last weekend as I had a cold… Usually I battle on decided to get some rest and leave the plot to slumber. Today it snowed which was a suprise and I realised 2 things; 1. Never leave your wellies at the plot and 2. If you do make sure your back up walking shoes are in the house… Not in the car boot!

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It’s only a little snow… but enough to cause a bit of fun on the commute to work. Not enough for the wellies yet! It always makes me smile when I see ‘London’ wellies getting an outting on snow days! They always look so shiney and clean!!

Wicker fence day

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I tried my hand at a bit of wicker work today, not sure how it’ll hold up… Fingers crossed

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I also had some helpers…in the form of 2 little cats

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