16 Apr 2015

Gardening: March and April Update

Due to our trip to Italy and the early Easter holiday I'm putting all the gardening activities for March and April into one post, mostly as collages.


During March the daffodil buds gradually opened in the sunshine. We leave the bulbs in the ground and the blooms were, as always, a welcome sight.


By the end of the month there was blossom on the apricot tree which was attracting insects, large and small. Despite being pruned annually many of the mature fruit trees are not at their best.  However, there has been a successful grafting of a branch from a peach tree in the garden onto another mature tree whose dead branches had to be cut off.




The box hedge on the left of the drive looking towards the house has always done well, but the other on the opposite side was looking scruffy and we've planted bay and rosemary in the gaps. Iris shoots are appearing. Unless we're there in May we miss seeing them flower.
In the lawn that was cut in October I found some wild anemones and no doubt there are other wild flowers since the lawn has reverted back to a state similar to the surrounding meadows where I found wild grape hyacinths, marigolds, clover and so on when I went for a walk.  Many of the rosemary bushes have gone woody or died, but there's a huge one which has grown through the Roman pillars on the retaining wall.

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Back in the UK we've had warm weather although a few weeks ago there was an unexpected night of icy rain that settled and a few days of strong wind and rain. My husband had decided to create some raised beds  on the veggie plot and now has his plan for what he wants to grow there. The covered yard is a useful, extra space for starting off some plants and keeping others protected over the Winter months.


Below is a sample of what is growing at the moment outdoors and in the covered way. Thankfully there's still space in the yard for me to sit and read when I feel like it!  Our daughter has been staying with us and bought me a little table with a mosaic top and a model of a bird as an early birthday present. We share a love of gardening so we've been buying plants from plant sale stalls and the local garden centre nursery to supplement the ones grown from seed.

Some alpines and sweet peas



The weather is not as warm at the moment as it has been, but it's dry and pleasant enough for continuing with work in the garden and for getting out and about. Yesterday we had a day out in Derbyshire.

32 comments:

  1. It all looks to be coming along well. Those raised beds are great, you should grow some great veg in those, and I love those white daffodils. I've grown white ones for the first time this year but I'm not happy with the variety I chose, I'll try something different next year.

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    1. I saw your super raised bed you've constructed in your allotment and mentioned to my husband who said he had been planning to make some using old decking from a previous house we had. The creamy white daffs in the front garden by the wall did well, but the few standard yellow we had in the back garden were eaten by slugs - very strange. Most were all leaf and no flower. Thalia and the paper whites did well. They were/ are in pots in the covered yard. We've planted some early and some late so we have more to come as well as tulips.

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  2. I always enjoy your posts Linda, marvelous photos and a lovely header picture also. Thanks for stopping by and commenting on my pet hospital mural. Have a great day :)

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    1. Thank you, Denise. I always enjoy your blog, but I'm just getting back into blogging and way behind with posting and commenting.

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  3. Wonderful garden pictures, both of Italy and England. Love that little lilac Anemones in your Italian garden and the new raised beds for vegetables very promising.
    Wish you a lovely weekend, with sunny weather.

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    1. Thank you Janneke. I'm pleased that 'the lawn' has reverted back to its natural state and happy to see the wild anemones growing there. I hope you have good weather so that you can continue with your gardening. It's a busy time of the year for the gardener.

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  4. Linda, your garden is beautiful! I love what you have done. I was staying with a friend with beautiful gardens this week and I am inspired to TRY and do something!!! Can I ask, in your blossom photos, is that a hummingbird hawk moth having a drink!? I didn't know we had those in England if so!x

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    1. I can't take credit for the gardens because it's Mr. P. who does all the hard work, especially in the veggie plot. I'm the one who plans where plants might go in the flower beds or pots! There are many types of bees, wasps, butterflies, moths that enjoy the flowers in the Italian garden, but I'm not sure what type of insect the one in the photo is. It may well be a hummingbird moth as it flew into the apricot blossom and then flew off whereas other types just land and stay put for a long time.

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  5. Such lovely photos......your garden is looking very organised and tidy which makes me a little ashamed of how little I have done...oh well....as the days get longer I will have more time to get outside...I just hope the weather warms up and stays warm soon.

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    1. Having a small garden in the UK with a covered yard and long garage to use as a potting facility makes gardening more manageable for my husband. He wasted no time in starting to construct the raised beds when we got back from Italy and, of course, we have more time for gardening whereas you probably just have the lighter evenings and weekends, hoping for good weather.

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  6. Lovely photos of both your gardens and it was interesting to see the contrasts between them. The raised beds look good, we have just prepared ours for some of the vegetable seedlings from the greenhouse. Have a lovely weekend:)

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    1. The raised beds are a good idea as the plot looks tidier. It's easier to organise and plant out the different vegetables. Enjoy your weekend too!

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  7. Thank you for sharing the flora of your springtime. Such beautiful color. I think that is what makes Spring so helpful in regard to moods that can be rather gray by winter's end -- the incredible color missing for so long. So enjoyed visiting you in Italy and England.

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    1. Suddenly we have lots of colour in the gardens with the promise of more to come and this does lift the spirit.

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  8. you are most certainly surrounded by beauty. the collages scream Welcome Spring.. so beautiful and i like your hedge enclosed place to plant things in the raised beds...

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    1. I like the hedge too although it's hard work for my husband to keep it trim. Mr. P. would rather not have it as it's very thick and takes up a lot of space in a small garden, but I like the privacy, security and shelter it gives us as well as looking at a green, living backdrop rather than a wall or fence. The birds like landing and walking on the top of it, which is amusing to watch.

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  9. What lovely pictures, how wonderful everything is looking....you just can't beat spring can you? You are a very lucky lady to have two gardens with such different climates, basically the world is your oyster in terms of being able to grow just about anything.xxx

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    1. The two gardens are very different in style and what's grown in each. The priority is to keep both in good shape by sticking to a routine through the seasons and growing what we know will work for us. As I've mentioned before, we're fortunate that relatives are there to help us in both places.

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  10. Both of your gardens look beautiful, you have so many great things growing and blooming already!! You must enjoy having the two different gardens to care for. xx

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    1. Most of the plants flower year-after-year according to the season. We were given a lot of bulbs for this Spring season that were planted early. As some die off others are starting to flower such as the tulips and different varieties of narcissus. Because the daffodils in Italy flower earlier than in the UK we've been able to enjoy two months of their beauty.

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  11. How fun to see such different gardens from Italy to England. Both are quite beautiful in their own ways.
    The daffodils at the beginning of the post particularly sang to my heart, as they are a favorite of mine.

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    1. The gardens are very different. I like the space to grow vines and the naturalness of the Italian garden whereas there's the opportunity to develop the English one because there's more time to work on it.

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  12. Hi, Love seeing all of the Spring flowers and colors both in Italy and in England... Just GORGEOUS. Most of our Daffodils are now gone --but they were all so pretty when they were blooming.

    Bet you get some good veggies and/or plants from the new raised beds this year.
    Hugs,
    Betsy

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    1. It's amazing how many varieties of daffodil and narcissi there are. I love their scent when you pick a bunch and bring them into the house, but they also look wonderful growing naturally in the grass.

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  13. So many lovely spring blooms in your gardens, both in the UK and in Italy (you are doubly blessed)! I especially love your photo with the primroses, narcissus and those blue flowers -- so beautiful and colorful. Thanks so much for sharing your spring garden moments with us. -Beth

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    1. Thanks for your visit, Beth. The plant with the blue flowers growing along and in the cracks of the dry-stone wall that wraps around the front and side of our house is aubrieta. It's actually a purple variety which has photographed as blue. We inherited it from the previous owner of the house. Once it's established it continues to spread and has to be thinned out. It's evergreen and produces bright flowers in the Springtime and I don't mind it as it looks quite pretty.

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  14. Dear Linda,

    Your beautiful springtime garden is looking beautiful with all the pretty bright daffodils and gorgeous flowers blooming.
    Enjoy your weekend and having your daughter home.
    Hugs
    Carolyn

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    1. Thank you Carolyn. It's been lovely having no. 1 daughter here and to share daughter no 2's birthday and other good moments at the same time. Have a good weekend yourself.

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  15. Your gardens look lovely, the Daffodils look wonderful..
    Amanda xx

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    1. Thank you for your kind comment, Amanda.

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  16. What a beautiful garden you have, Linda! Thanks for all the lovely photos and collages. I know how much work they take! Happy gardening!

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  17. I love both your gardens, Linda, different though they are. Your English garden is so productive and full of flowers and your Italian one wilder and more romantic. :-)

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