Now that we have lived in our new house for 9 months, I think it’s time to introduce to you our new garden.
This Is Our Very First Garden!
In our previous home in Dorset we lived in a 200 year old cottage with no garden at all! We had a courtyard that was shared with 2 other neighbours so growing anything became very difficult. We did manage tomatoes in pots and a few flowers but that was about it.
The Next Best Thing…?
So keen were we to actually grow some food that we took on an allotment…and then another! We had varying degrees of success as watering was particularly difficult, so not always an enjoyable pastime! We even had a poly-tunnel, which was fantastic and really gave us the space to grow things like chillies and peppers along with the usual salad items. Unfortunately, an allotment where we live now is not an option for us so we will have to make the best of our new garden.
A Garden Of Our Very Own!
Having our own little garden now is a real bonus but as you can see, it’s not exactly large! It measures roughly 10m x 5m (or 33ft x 16ft in old money). It slopes upwards away from the house towards the back gate. We also have a reasonable size patio outside the back door.
There will be challenges ahead to design the garden to get the maximum use from it. I would still like to be able to grow some food such as runner beans, tomatoes, maybe some fruit such as raspberry canes but at the same time it has to be pretty.
I’ve Planted A Few Things!
Earlier in the year I came across some old seeds I had left over from the allotment, lots of tomatoes some cucumber, lettuce and sweet peas.
I decided to plant the lot into trays and just see what happened but not really expecting any of them to sprout as the seed was so old.
The success rate was much higher than expected but it became clear that the garden would have to take a back seat. We had to decorate the entire house – 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms over 3 floors and every ceiling, wall, skirting board and door was painted as well as the kitchen cabinets!!!
So, I decided to just plant all of the seedlings in the existing borders and raised bed and see what happened!
The tomatoes especially did a lot better than expected. I had a few varieties to sow and some did better than others although at least a few of each variety did grow into viable plants.
We have Sweet Million, Apricot Dream, Rosella and a good old favourite Gardener’s Delight.
There will certainly be some recipes coming up for preserving these when they are ready! I’m especially looking forward to making some lovely tomato chutney using recipes from my old cookery books
If there is one thing I have always enjoyed growing it has to be cucumbers. When we had our poly tunnel the crop was enormous!
This time however, I had a packet of outdoor cucumber seeds, which I have never tried before. As we got busier and busier, I admittedly just popped them into the raised bed and left them to their own devices.
There is an awful lot of foliage! But underneath all of those large leaves we have found a good crop of cucumbers coming along nicely. We have even picked a couple already and they taste divine!
These are an absolute must to grow and will have to have a place reserved for them when the garden is redesigned.
I have grown some in the raised bed this year as I always pickle them ready for Christmas. Nothing tastes as good as a homemade pickle shallot or onion!
These are ready for harvesting and drying.
These are one of my all-time favourite flowers. There will always be a place for these in the new garden.
They look so pretty and the scent can fill a room. Best of all picking the flowers means you get more blooms as a result.
These didn’t do so well though, as the seed was vey old. The packet had been open for some time so I wasn’t expecting too much. I planted lots of seeds in deep root training cells but literally only 2 were successful!
But, 2 is better than none so I planted them out. They are now happily starting to produce flowers.
So, there you have it, our new garden…oh, and in case you are wondering, the dog on the lawn is our 13 year old spaniel called Billy! He just loves to be outside no matter what the weather ☺