Friday, 18 October 2013

Let there be light

Autumn is always a good time to evaluate the garden - what went well, what earns its space, and what poor specimens have been selected for the chop. Literally.

Whilst prowling the flowerbeds, plotting where to plant the 100 narcissus bulbs desperate for a home, I decided I could regain quite a bit of at least temporary space by giving the thuggish cherry laurel hedge a rather drastic trim.  Should buy me enough time for the narcissus to put in an appearance at any rate.

And so the pruning saw was wielded with vigour and it felt like the flower bed breathed its thanks for the increased light levels.

autumn garden, England
The new look hedge and the old version, side by side. Has to be done in stages just to deal with the mountains of pruning generated.
The drastic haircut in all its glory. Euphorbias are on their final warning as well.

Not content with that bit of culling, I progressed to hoiking out some of the bulky euphorbias which, lovely though they are, do not get cut for bunches due to their poisonous sap. Out out vile irritants. Likewise large angelicas, of which I have plenty, and which self seed prolifically.  Likewise foxglove stumps which really should have been uprooted months ago, but kept sprouting mini flower spikes and earning reprieves which metamorphosed into an extended holiday.

Pulling things out also reveals where all the weeds and slugs are hiding, so they were all dealt with unkindly too.  Clearing done, all the bulbs then went in.  Now I've just got to find space for all my alliums. Which patch shall I target next?

I also spent half an hour of today's dry weather gathering in all my dried seedheads to furnish me with wreath making ingredients for the forthcoming festive season.  Better to collect and store them somewhere dry now, before the weather can destroy their delicate forms.

On my way back from school this morning, I saw someone else had been seized with the same hedge-trimming mania and a coniferous one was being drastically reduced.  Cue visit with plastic bag to gather up trimmings.   The result:

The first wreath of many over the next two months.


  1. Fab time for drastic changes in the garden, I am like Old Father Time wielding my scythe and cuttings things down in their prime ! Love your wreath - almost feel inspired to give it a go, but it looks rather difficult !!

    1. Shall I let you into a secret known only to a select few - they're actually really easy to do and look so impressive. Go on, give it a whirl! You'll be glad you did....