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School Veg Patch
It may be a bit of an exaggeration to call the bed outside our window a front garden. We live in a corner and so the front area of gardening space is shared with our neighbour who decided a couple of years ago to build a rather unsightly fence straight across the middle of it – well in fact straight through the middle of some shrubs that we had planted outside our front window! I describe this event not to have a belated moan but to explain the awful fence and to absolve us of any part in its erection!
This patch has really been waiting to be turned into something beautiful for ages but never ones to do things on impulse we hadn’t got round to deciding how to tackle it. Now that hopefully any work on the house that could involve trampling the soil has been completed we have decided on a plan. The very narrow strip of block paving under the window will be widened slightly to allow access by a step ladder to clean the front windows and the rest planted up this area with lots of colourful, (hopefully), perennials and bulbs.
Browsing the Internet for perennials that would give colour for the longest period I came across the wonderful Beth Chatto Nursery Garden. Not only did this find save me rather a lot of expense but also provided a huge range of plants to choose from. There plants are incredibly good too – if you want to read more click here.
A planting plan has been created which hopefully should mean that the offending fence is at least partially hidden by plants. The plants chosen are a penstemon collection from Unwins, a hardy geranium , veronica and a salvia collection from Hayloft and Rudbeckia- fulgida var. deamii, Rudbeckia - fulgida var sullivantii 'Goldsturm', Aster novi-belgii - Purple Dome', Aster x frikartii – Mönch and Campanula lactiflora - Prichard's Variety' from Beth Chatto Nursery Gardens. This will form the starting point for our planting as bulbs and annuals will also be added as we go along. Our full plant list with additional information can be found here.
To add some colour for early spring I planted some bulbs. Read more here. I’ve also added some heuchera - Plum Palace dotted along the edge to spill over onto the paving. These were split from plants that had been growing on the plot.
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More spring bulbs were added to the bed. These were two varieties of dwarf narcissus - Dickcissel and Minnow and some Dutch irises.
Many of the plants have matured and are bulking up well especially the campanula..
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Since 2014 many spring bulbs have been added to this area but it is starting to look past its best. Some of the perennials such as most of the penstemon have disappeared. Others such as the geraniums and heuchera have spread too far and are dominating the area.
With the perennials being underplanted with many bulbs. we will need to put some thought into how we are going to refresh it