…in an English country garden….

I’m looking for some garden inspiration – can you help?

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I don’t know the names of many plants, including this one!

I’ve been doing lots of gardening this week. As I normally live on a boat over the summer, it’s both a novelty and a responsibility to look after a garden. As I’ve had tenants in my house for several years, I tried to keep the garden simple and easy to look after, and there’s not a lot in it. Basically there’s a square lawn front and back, joined with a long border up the side of the house. There is a very long wall, with a small border in front of it, which unfortunately has no plants in it. There are a few shrubs in the other borders, but it’s quite a boring garden really, but very tidy!

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I’d love a winter hanging basket!

If you are a gardening enthusiast, any advice for what I could plant in the shady, narrow bed against the wall, would be gratefully received.

I’ve been weeding and tidying the borders, and have managed to fill about eight sacks of garden rubbish. I also planted some spring flowering narcissus bulbs in two big pots that were in the garden.

The other day I went with my eldest daughter to look round the local garden centre in Romsey, to get some inspiration for my empty borders. There were so many wonderful plants I wanted to buy! It was all very expensive though, and I don’t know enough about plants to choose wisely, so I didn’t bring home any plants on this visit.

There was also a very cute shop at the garden centre, which sold a bizarre variety of goods – everything from jars of jam and pickles, birthday cards, toys, bird food, deckchairs, gloves, tools, scarves, ornaments, patio furniture. I think I’ll be making a return visit for some Christmas presents!

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Cakes and goodies for sale in the garden centre shop.

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Strange wooden animals for sale…

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 Mugs adorned with cats and dogs….

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Glittery ornaments of every shape and size….

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Shiny new spades and forks for digging…

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5 thoughts on “…in an English country garden….

  1. Well I love gardening – but really don’t have any tips – except to say do exactly what you are doing – get advice! Ha – because I learned the hard way by planting things too fast – I knew I wanted perennials (for ease and to come back – and then a splash of annuals) – but changing it up was tiring and costly – so I learned about having heights layered and then the gift of native plants to my area – so much easier –

    Anyhow / there is something to be said for a tidy garden even if not lush. IMO – anyhow – looks like a shop with my kind of gifts for giving!
    Best wishes with your garden 😉

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  2. Garden centres in the UK are a snare: full of “gifts” that have nothing to do with gardening, and everything to do with rampant consumerism. They also tend to be very pricey.
    I’d start by planning what you want from the garden in view of the plans you have for the future, number 1 priority being: are you going to rent it out again? If so, it has to be an easy care project.
    Then plant according to soil type and sun exposure/water resources (is Romsey a fairly dry area?)
    Lastly, you’ll definitely need a trip to get some useful ideas. Let me recommend Sicily. It’s a dream of a place and the gardens are wonderful. Maybe you could tamper with Fandancer’s GPS and divert your husband off-course next summer, in a westerly direction?!

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    • Thanks for your useful comments. I like the idea of a trip to get garden inspiration! We briefly stopped at Sicily when we sailed Fandancer from UK to Greece five years ago, but didn’t check out any gardens! Will have to go again.

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  3. I would ask advice, from an on line garden site like Sarah Raven. Don’t spend too much on the garden at all if you are selling in the Spring! A few winter flowering pansies would be good. Then the new people can plant what they want after they move in. Just saying …..

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