We have now lived in our house for 3 years. Time flies when you are having fun (and when you’re renovating). It feels like we have neglected the garden in favour of all the structural work we have undertaken on the house (some of which you can read about here and here). I certainly don’t have the wildflower garden of my dreams. However, when looking through some old photos I realised that we have actually achieved a fair bit in the garden. This ties in nicely with my decision to do a monthly update on how out garden is progressing. Since snow and poor weather dominated March I am writing a ‘then and now’ post to show what we have accomplished so far and to give a reference point for future posts.
Then and now
When we first moved in our priority was replacing the crumbling fencing. Only the lawn area was fenced but we still had 28 panels to replace. For such a big job we enlisted the children and their friends to help and paid them in fish and chip suppers!
We soon realised that getting the children to help benefited us all. Not only did the work get completed faster but it helped them to appreciate their surroundings. Moreover it got them out of the house. I don’t know about you but if we have nothing specific planned my children will happily stay inside playing computer games all day.
The bottom of the garden was a challenge. There was hard standing and a large shed that had seen better days. With paint brush in hand my little helpers soon got to work.
The next step was to break up all of the concrete. The plan was to create a vegetable patch in this area but progress was slow. Thankfully with a little bribery and a lot of help we dug up the area.
The thought of growing our own fruit certainly helped to spur everyone on. Although the bottom of the garden still isn’t complete the then and now comparison is pretty strong.
So far we have grown our own strawberries, blackberries and tomatoes. It hasn’t been the most productive of starts. However last year, next door removed the enormous tree that was at the bottom of their garden and it has made an enormous difference to our available light. We have now added an apple tree sapling and tayberries. This week the children have been digging it over and preparations are afoot to sew some root vegetables. I think it’s important to grow things that they will enjoy eating. They are more eager to get involved with produce they want to see on their plate!
Where we are now
The immediate project we have in mind is to varnish the fences. It’s a job that the children will relish but they will have to be closely supervised or they will paint each other! I have purchased some bricks to make a border down the right hand side of the lawn. Now that next door’s trees are removed we have enough light for this. As an aside I really believe that there should be height restrictions on what you can grow in your garden. There has to be a balance between privacy and shrouding your surroundings in sade.
Let’s be honest, the garden isn’t looking at it’s glorious best at the moment. If I had thought ahead I would of published a then and now post while the garden was in full bloom to show a more dramatic difference but that seems a little dishonest. This is it as it stands. There is a lot of work to do this summer and sometimes it does feel like a thankless task. Looking back at what we started with though, I can see progress and it helps to spur me on with the project.
It really is a marathon not a sprint!
I do hope you will join us for updates on our progress
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