Dodging the rain

Despite the threat of rain, we have had some good gardening sessions this Sunday and Monday - even if we did have to run for cover at least once. It is quite exciting gardening with the rumble of thunder overhead - but we decided not to stay outside in lightning.

We started two new beds next to the water tower. One will have a climbing clematis, a favourite plant of at least one volunteer, and also very good for wildlife.

We started two new beds next to the water tower. One will have a climbing clematis, a favourite plant of at least one volunteer, and also very good for wildlife.

We planted some daffodil bulbs, which we had saved from Council roundabouts (thanks Grant and Tony). We have hyacinths and tulips to come...

We finished cutting back half the perennial meadow bed - as an experiment - and even saved some flowers for vases and to try some natural dyeing. We will let the other half flourish for a few weeks or so - they are so pretty. Cutting it back twice in the first year should improve the sward next year, apparently (but you have to be very hard hearted to do it).

We finished cutting back half the perennial meadow bed - as an experiment - and even saved some flowers for vases and to try some natural dyeing. We will let the other half flourish for a few weeks or so - they are so pretty. Cutting it back twice in the first year should improve the sward next year, apparently (but you have to be very hard hearted to do it).

And as new flowers come out, we captured a few plant combinations we like. Here we have Japanese anemones, with daylily leaves (both divided last year from a local garden) and brunnera (from a charity plant sale). The white flowers look good against the dark hedge behind.

And as new flowers come out, we captured a few plant combinations we like. Here we have Japanese anemones, with daylily leaves (both divided last year from a local garden) and brunnera (from a charity plant sale). The white flowers look good against the dark hedge behind.

We can't really have enough Verbena bonariensis (grown from seed) - and they look great with the flowering sedums (from garden cuttings) - the pollinators are really spoiled for choice!

We can't really have enough Verbena bonariensis (grown from seed) - and they look great with the flowering sedums (from garden cuttings) - the pollinators are really spoiled for choice!

We sowed some (late season) veg seeds, did some general tidying and planning for this Autumn and Winter and next year.

We finally harvested our 'massive crop' of (big) potatoes from the pallet planters - only from one plant. They are 'surprise potatoes' - we still don't really know what the seeds were - maybe Duke of York. Next year, we will try some first and second earlies - probably Arran Pilot and Charlotte.

We finally harvested our 'massive crop' of (big) potatoes from the pallet planters - only from one plant. They are 'surprise potatoes' - we still don't really know what the seeds were - maybe Duke of York. Next year, we will try some first and second earlies - probably Arran Pilot and Charlotte.

We have some exciting (we hope) plans for this 'wilderness area'. Watch this space...

We have some exciting (we hope) plans for this 'wilderness area'. Watch this space...

The pleasing combination of crocosmia, dianthus, gaura, geraniums, rudbeckias, sedums (although their name has changed recently) and verbena rigida is one reason why we are converting some of the annual beds to perennial plants. Although the seedbank of annuals is a bit overpowering at times - see the Californian poppy crop between plants - as fast as we weed them out they grow back.

The pleasing combination of crocosmia, dianthus, gaura, geraniums, rudbeckias, sedums (although their name has changed recently) and verbena rigida is one reason why we are converting some of the annual beds to perennial plants. Although the seedbank of annuals is a bit overpowering at times - see the Californian poppy crop between plants - as fast as we weed them out they grow back.