Friday, 24 June 2011

My Second Living Room

Today I've risen to the challenge set to me by reader and correspondent Donna OShaughnessy from Illinois in the big US of A, (hello Donna.) Please visit her highly informative and entertaining blog about her life as a "Midlife Farmwife" on a Certified Organic dairy, beef and pork ranch called South Pork!

The challenge was for me to stop teasing with pictures of flowers and show the garden as it is. Well, that's a bit difficult because it's in an L shape, so I thought we'd have a walk around instead and took a few pics as I went along. I think you can click on them to enlarge them.

The first pic shows the back of the house - quite narrow; there's a road on the left hand side behind the hedge. A small fish pond with a waterfall is directly in front of you and I am standing under an old cherry tree. It's quite shady here, but the trees are protected under a preservation order, so I can't touch them although the the Local Authority does look kindly on me trimming them but I still have to apply to lop the branches.

So I've reached the far corner of the house and just take half a turn to my right, the start of the L shape.  There's a larger 1000 litre fish pond to the left with a waterfall, raised and surrounded by a wooden clad wall. In the middle is a pergola, covered in clematis Montana and honeysuckle through which we can walk in to the back of the garden. An old bird bath sits lonely in the grass and a green border with ferns, hostas, rhododendron and robina sits nicely to the right giving shade and a playground for the birds.

As we reach the back of the garden near the greenhouse, we can look back toward the house. Behind me is the greenhouse and shed and to the left a hedge of prickly pyracantha (deadly stuff, rips me to shreds) and you can just see the birdbath in the distance. My fountain is in the centre the base of which is filled with bedding plants and although you can't see them (just one peeping round the bottom left hand side), there are six pots of different varieties of lavender on the other side of the fountain base enjoying the sun and is home to visiting bees and butterflies.

You can see the shadow of trees on the lawn and I have a huge lime tree in the right hand corner out of shot and behind me is a large sycamore and two decorative silver birch trees. It's not too difficult to keep on top of, most of the borders in the shade are covered in a protective layers and bark chippings. The shrubs get a shave from the hedge trimmer in late autumn and the lawn gets cut once a week. 

Today I planted about ten perennial plants I bought from Brigg yesterday to fill the gaps in the borders and above is an old much loved tub with a lovely lilac osteospermum 'stardust' and two different cupheas which also came from the garden centre to add a bit of colour to the patio. The front garden is a triangular paved drive with a few pots of bits and pieces just to break up the monotony.

I hope you enjoyed the journey in my second living room - the garden.

Tomorrow it's a trip to Scarborough, a seaside town in North Yorkshire and about an hour and a half's drive away with friends to see an Air Show (I've never been to one) which is in the afternoon, so praying for decent weather.

Enjoy your weekend



  1. lovely garden, the waterfall looks nice, well it all does.

    Josie x

  2. Your garden is beautiful. It looks like a lot of work too. Caught a glimpse of one of those beautiful orange (ginger) cats in the first photo.


  3. Loved the trip round your garden - it's lovely. Have a nice time in Scarborough. Having just looked at the weather forecast I don't think it will be too bad by the time you get there.

  4. You're going to Scarborough you swine! I'm SO jealous. I'm sorely tempted - though it's a three hour drive from here. I hope the weather's good for you. Have some fish and chips for me.

  5. Oh, I do so love coming to your blog and to get the chance to wander around your garden with you to, is a joy. Thanks to for sharing a cuppa with us. Have a great time in Scarborough,RLS

  6. Hi Wanda
    Many thanks for your kind comment. Yes, the cat got camera shy and decided to scoot off.

    Hi Weaver
    Thank you, I've spotted Paul Hudson on Twitter and I think by mid morning, it'll be fine.

    Hi MorningAJ
    It's a bit of a trek for me too but haven't been for about twenty years so really looking forward to it. I'm afraid the diet has kicked in but I'll have a chicken salad for you!

    Hi Jarmara
    You are so kind, thank you. I say, that was very well spotted, I'd left my cup on the seat. Looking forward to Scarborough.

  7. I cannot believe that all I had to do was ask ! Thank you so very much. Of course now I have serious garden envy. It is obvious that someone has enjoyed many hours out there. If I can stand the embarrassment of it all I might do a walkabout in my own farm yard. If nothing else it will give you the giggles.

    Again, many thanks blog friend !

  8. Oh you're going to Scarborough! Give a big wave to Flamborough for me. I was gazing at a couple of paintings I have of Flamborough today and wistfully wishing I could get one more visit there. I need a Star Trek Transporter.
    Your garden looks beautiful. My patio is my extra living room but it's not getting much use right now. Our June gloom is in full effect. A month from now we will probably be wishing we were back in June.

  9. Hi Donna
    Well you asked and you are very welcome... Thanks for the kind comments.
    I would love to see a walk around of your 'yard.'

    Hi ChrisJ
    I said hello to Flamborouigh as I passed, but this morning it was still under a damp haze after a night long downpour. Couldn't see much, but the afternoon turned out to be lovely.

  10. Now, that's a nice garden :)

  11. Hi. I came on over from Donna's blog. Your garden is absolutely lovely. I can see why you refer to it as your second living room. It would be a treat to enjoy every day.