Saturday 14 August 2010

Lie of the land......

Our home is situated near the floodplains of the River Beult. It is one of the few clay rivers in England to retain much of its chartacteristic fauna. The river is designated as a site of Special Scientific Interest.
Our previous home was situated on a hill. To move to a low lying area, has been a huge learning curve.

Ditches take the excess water away from the garden........and out to the river Beult. Mr P and I check the ditches regularly to make sure there are no blockages.
With a high water table for most of the year (excluding this one) the garden is perfect for ferns.
I added plenty of horse manure to the beds before I planted. I have only watered the ferns a couple of times during this very dry spell........all are doing well.
I always put a log or two near the plants.....for me, that is just the way it should be.
All ferns are planted in shade or semi-shade......
My hosta's are still leaf perfect, thanks to the resident song thrush.
I have found many empty snail shells around the garden. I do not use any pest controls here. In my humble opinion, they are not good for the garden, or for me. I don't do stamping either.........I am a sensitive soul, and actually quite proud of it.
Pulmonaria had begun to look rather sad, but the torrential rain that came yesterday has livened them up.

Even Arum italicum has produced beautiful berries...........lovely to see dotted amongst the planting.

Heavy rain is forecast for the next few days......I feel relieved. I love this area for all that it is. I may sometimes curse when the roads are flooded........or the ditches overflow and need unblocking but all in all, I love to live in this damp and interesting area.

Hope you are having a peaceful and happy weekend.......


  1. Please forgive me for uploading the same photograph least it shows I am human!!
    Havn't got time to correct it (also must be honest, I cannot be bothered) going out with the grand-children.

    Tku for your understanding......

  2. Hi my friend....sorry about your last post ..I had this long comment on your post with your lovely gift and all went to post it found I wasn't signed in and in the process of correcting that ...lost my comment and did not have time to redo it!!
    Your ferns and Hosta look like they have done well in spite of the lack of rain...and seems they will continue to do so with all the rain your are getting!!
    I hope you have a great time with the grandchildren.....I really am feeling a little blue today missing mine and wish I was with them !!

  3. Have a good time with your ganndchildren. Your garden looks so lovely and I imagine it to be a calm and tranquil place. I wish I could see it in reality as it sounds lovely. As do you - I am glad you like to live and let live and that you are finding that the birds keep the snails at bay without need to resort to any nasty chemicals. Enjoy your weekend.

    Jane x

  4. Your ferns look good Cheryl. I am sure they appreciate the logs nearby to keep the moisture there. Do you ever find salamanders under those logs? It is incredibly dry here now. It has tried to rain several times but just a dribble. I have only been out to water the pots. UGH. I hate this weather. Our hostas look pitaful. Full of holes and not likeing the dry spell. I hope you have a great weekend. Not much going on here.

  5. Hi Cheryl.
    Firstly, many thanks for your kind and comforting words...much appreciated.

    I have a few ferns but no Hostas..maybe I should give them a go and to hell with the slug and snail damage! (Unfortunately no Hedgehog or Thrushes here). The garden is enjoying the rain but I would like some fair weather during the day to tread the byways. FAB.

  6. HI Grammie, the ferns and hostas look lovely at this time......they will enjoy the rain that is for sure.

    Sorry to hear you are missing your grand-children. They are wonderful company aren't they?
    I love to be with mine. They keep me young at heart and young in spirit.

  7. Hi Jane......I hate chemicals of any kind. I truly do believe they do damage to us and the environment, that is just my humble opinion. I have turned a blind eye to much that goes on in the garden. It has not always been easy but this last year I am at last reaping the rewards. This has been the best year for heart is happy.

    Tku for your lovely comment......

  8. Hi Lisa......we do not have any native salamanders. We do have two species of newt, as far as I am aware.
    I find many things under the logs, including frogs. Poppi loves to watch the insects run away when I lift them for her.

    I feel so sorry for you and your gardens. I hope this situation improves soon, it is quite soul destroying to watch a garden bake.......

  9. Hi Frank,
    you are welcome. I walked the garden thinking of you and your family. A difficult time for you all.

    I love the fern, hosta, combination dotted with wild flowers. I have just started dividing enchanters nightshade to add to this area. It should look lovely next spring.

  10. Looks so beautiful - gardening *with* nature rather than against it. Please remind me how many years you have been creating this garden, so many times I look at your pictures and see what I want to eventually create at Bag End :}

  11. Glad you finally got some rain, though maybe too much of it. I love the idea of logs near ferns--I'll have to add some to mine. (Oh, and I still haven't sent the seeds, but I will THIS Monday, I swear!)

  12. Hi Bilbo tku, you are very kind.

    I am in my ninth year........It has not been an easy project I confess but definately an enjoyable one. I have made mistakes along the way but as far I cam concerned, that is what gardening is about. My main aim is to get wildlife to this space and that is working.

    I will be sixty next year, I intend to be gardening here when I am eighty and beyond.......God willing.

  13. Monica, glad you like the logs near the ferns. Some of mine have started to grow moss the fungi.....looks lovely in the autumn when the leaves turn on the ferns.

    You are a tease....I have been to the post box each day, all excited, only to find the seeds are not there.....only kidding!!
    It will be lovely to get them, whenever, it does not matter, so do not worry......

    Have you ridden your bike this weekend??

  14. Hi Cheryl,

    I'm glad you finally got your much needed rain!!

    It looks like we will have a very similar border next year as I see you have Pulmonaria and Geranium together - so will I once it's planted! They're just waiting until my bulbs arrive and I'll get everything in at once.

  15. Cheryl, you have obviously done a great job of learning to adapt to the conditions of your land. I'm still month the garden is flooded, and the next it is suffering from drought. I guess that is why native plants seem to do the best here. I do love ferns; they remind me of walking in the woods, I guess. And your hostas are beautiful! Your pest management control--or truce with the pests, perhaps--is definitely working here.

    Hope you are having a great time with the grandkids!

  16. Hi Liz....the rain has been a blessing. It is surprising how a good soaking gets everything moving again.

    I have pulmonaria and cranesbill in the shady areas of the garden. I like the combination, especially when they are both in bloom. When the cranesbills leaves turn red in autumn, they look lovely against the pulmonaria leaves. For me, it is a perfect combination......

    Hope your week goes well......

  17. Hi Rose, it has taken a long time to work out how this piece of land works. I still do not understand it fully, I doubt I ever will.
    My grass changes shape each year, ups and downs, hollows.....due to the movement of water.
    The tractor mower has difficultly in cutting some areas, so I have to use a hand mower here and there. Makes it hard work, but to be positive it keeps me fit.

    Had a lovely time with the grand-children. Thank you.

  18. Hi Cheryl,

    I was given a few different Geraniums and have finally found out which types they are – most are suitable for shade. They were planted in a couple of pots temporarily until they put out new leaves/flowers. One is the beautiful Phaeum, which I have been after for a while and look forward to it spreading and flowering next Spring.

    So hopefully I will have solved my problem of ‘what to do with a dry shady area’!

    I hope you have a good week too. It's certainly off to a good start here... But I hear it's going to turn again soon. Oh well, enjoy it while we can!

  19. Hi Liz, as you know I grow many different geraniums here, I have to say Phaeum is my favourite. It does very well in deep shade but does need a little attention during its first summer(watering if it gets very dry). After than you can just leave it and it will spread.....a flower that beautiful I am sure you will not mind.

    I am at a funeral tomorrow. My Aunt died last week, the one we talked about quite a while ago.
    My Mum wants to go (her sister) but we will have to see if she feels up to it in the morning.

    Weather is dull, cool, and windy. Not complaining I have been extending a border today, so perfect weather for that.

  20. Dear Cheryl,
    I have lost all but one of my ferns. I was looking at it just yesterday and remembering my fern garden....
    It is so very wonderful to find the joy of an area. I do think you love your home and gardens. I think they and you are well cared for.
    No you post is just perfect.

  21. Cheryl, you are a fountain of information. I learn so much when I come here.

    At first I misread your post "I always put a DOG or two by the ferns". LOL! And at first glance I thought it was a dog by the fern. Well, maybe Nella sits by the log. Or maybe I need to change my glasses.
    Hope you enjoyed your weekend with your grandchildren. They really are a joy, aren't they?