Plant of the Month 9/12 – Trees

Hello lovely people!

Super apologies for the long wait between posts, things in life have been busy and also it’s been so wet recently, I’ve barely had any time outside. Boo!

We managed to find some sun last weekend and got out for a walk at Leigh Woods which is just 5 mins down the road from us. A beautiful woodland, great for summer picnics and dog walks! It was on this walk that I decided I would break the rules a little and celebrate a whole family for my ‘plant of the month’.

You can’t go through the autumn months without noticing the changing colours all around. The beautiful chilly mornings, with the low sun shining through tones of copper.

Yes, you got it. Trees are my celebrated plant for October and I am not picky. I love all trees, but I think my favourite might be the traditional Oak. There is something wonderful about seeing a huge, grand, old oak on a woodland walk and thinking, I wonder what you have seen in your long life? Imagine, some of the big Oaks you can see around the UK have been around for nearly 1000 years. Most for hundreds. How much change they must have seen and lived through in that amount of time is incredible.

I am not very knowledgeable about trees generally, Andrew knows a lot about them and points things out to me on our walks and teaches me new things. But I have an appreciation for them and a huge respect for how intricate and important they are. Aside from the obvious, which is that they provide us with the oxygen we need to breathe, they are important eco systems. They are homes for many insects, animals and birds.

There are so many more things they do, things you could never imagine. I think when you look at a huge tree, you almost forget that it’s a living thing. The intricate science which happens within them is outstanding.

Andrew is currently reading a fantastic book about them called, “The Hidden Life of Trees: What they Feel, How they Communicate” by Peter Wohlleben. It talks about how they can communicate with one another, how they live in a society and how they communicate within themselves.

All trees have something fascinating about them, some make good habitats, some great building materials, some a unique way of spreading their seeds. Like I said, I am not knowledgeable about trees, so I cannot teach you about them. But I urge you to go out and learn, particularly at this colourful time of the year. Go, enjoy them and maybe find a small one you can plant in your garden at home. I did, and it’s my favourite plant in the garden.

Happy Autumn folks! Happy exploring! 🍂

Sunny Sundays

Evening lovely readers! Also, a very happy PRIDE weekend to those who have been celebrating – Love really is everywhere. <3

We have spent this weekend basking in the sun and truly enjoying our newly created seating/dining area in the garden. Thanks again Dad & Andrew.

First up yesterday I moved lots of my potted plants into the new planters which not only look fabulous, it’s made more patio space, and has generally made the garden feel bigger.

We then jazzed up those reclaimed stools we bought while Dad was staying and now they look BLOODY AMAZING! It really ties the whole area in together, with the bird box and the bright flowers against the neutral colours of the planter and walls.

Don’t be frightened to inject a bit of colour into the garden, be bold and go for something bright. It can really add a bit of personality to your garden space. Ours now speaks volumes about us!

We still have bits to add, but the stools make such a difference. We also added a bit of interest by putting up some mirrors, one was given to us by my Nan earlier in the year and one I had lying around the house so I painted it up and they both look great.

Adding mirrors to an outdoor space can help create the illusion of more space, and when put at plant level it can reflect view of the garden you might not get to see normally.

Beautiful!

Andrew’s project has been sanding and varnishing our fabulous table, so that its got a smoother finish and is more weather proofed.

He managed to make a good start today, see where he has sanded down half the table?

The right side there has been smoothed down and the edges sanded, it feels and looks so much better.

Then Andrew covered the sanded half with wood preserver, which will keep the table looking nice for years to come.

It’s really brought out the grain, it looks beautiful and it is now ready for its coat of varnish. Can’t wait to see the finished product!

The lovely new space we have in the garden has allowed me to really start appreciating the plants I have.

My beautiful sweet peas are now starting to flower and I have big plans for them next year. Im thinking about sourcing a beautiful statement pot and an obelisk so I have a tower of sweet peas next time around.

I am excited for things to come and to spend more time in our fabulous new garden.

 

Thanks for reading!

Amy xxx

My Week in Words 4/7

HUGE PROGRESS TODAY… YAAAS!

Todays blog will be mostly consisting of the photos I took, as I am too sleepy from all of our hard work to compose many decent sentences. I will try, but bare with!

So first, we had to clear out lots of the gravel, mud and hidden junk (gross) so we could make level spaces for the bottom sleepers. Years worth of buried crap came out of that mud, including bloody loads of crisp packets (why?!) and a lorry tarp… Yeah, I have no idea.

So Anyway, we binned all that and so the first sleepers went in.

Unsurprisingly, and much like the rest of the house, nothing in the garden is flat or straight, so we had to get a bit creative, see proof below of Dad consulting the plans!

So, after being rained on a few times, and a well needed tea break, we chugged along and crikey, it was looking great!

You may remember a couple of months ago when Andrew (wearing super safe open-toed sandals) cleared out loads of concrete. Well finally we are putting it to use, and we are filling the bottom of the planter with it so that we don’t have to waste money on excessive compost to fill it up!

So after another tea break (c’mon we are Brits, we are powered on tea) we powered on, and just before Andrew got home from work, we reached this stage.

With the added energy boost from Mr Peach, we finished up the planting area today. Yeah, you heard. FINISHED. Bloody champions aren’t we!?

Well done Dad, Andrew & Me! Now all Dad needs to do tomorrow is make the benches which will go along the front of the planter and an added prep space on one end for the BBQ area. Word on the street is that Dad may also be building us a table too, plus if I’m lucky we might work on the allotment before he goes home too! Crikey – we will have achieved loads.

Brilliant day! Super chuffed with our new planter, it looks wonderful! Thank you to my super Daddy 🙂

If you want a planter as spectacular as this, and you like in the UK (ideally in Norfolk, so poor Dad doesn’t have travel to the other side of the country) check out my Dad’s Facebook page, and drop him a message!

Thanks for reading – check in tomorrow 🙂

xxx

 

Week in Words 3/7 – Plant of the Month 6/12 – Sunflower

Ok so today’s post is a bit of a cheat because I was due a plant of the month post, but I figured I didn’t say this week had to ONLY be about the garden renovation, so… My blog, my rules!

This month I am honouring the beautiful SUNFLOWER, and my goodness isn’t it bea-u-tiful!!

These sun worshipping giants come in many varieties and all are super easy to grow and look amazing when they are in full flower.

The seeds can be sown from March to May (some varieties can be later) and can be grown pretty much anywhere. If you have limited space like a small garden or balcony, they can be grown in pots. They like a nice spot along a wall or even on an allotment. Mine are currently being supported by canes, they will flop if their long stems don’t have anything to grow against, so a bamboo cane in the ground, trellis or wall is perfect!

Because they are sun lovers, they will turn to face the sun – so if you are sat in the garden with them all day you will see that they move from East to West as the sun rotates around our great planet. Most flowers show “heliotropism” (a tendency to move with the sun) but the larger size of the sunflower makes it a little more obvious to see! This does mean however that they don’t love shade, you make sure you find them somewhere the sun reaches 🙂

They don’t all come in giant size either, my sunflower babies are about 4ft tall and thats as big as they will get, you can also get dwarf varieties which grow up to about 12 inches. So there is really a sunflower for any space.

These beauties are also HEAVENLY for Bees – yes! SAVE THE BEES! So if you are looking for a wildlife friendly plant, the sunflower is the one for you!

Finally, if you are health savvy, sunflower seeds can be dried and eaten as a tasty snack… Also can be used in baking and other recipes. Did you know that sunflower seeds are nearly 25% protein… Whaat!? You will know the seeds are nearly ready when the flower heads start to droop. This means the seeds are ripening, when the disk on the back of the flower head darkens to a brown/black, the seeds are ready to harvest. All you have to do then, is beat the pesky birds and squirrels to them!

So if you aren’t interested in how stunning sunflowers are (weirdo) at least you can eat them.

So go on – grow some sunflowers of your own, get your kids involved, grow loads! They are stunning, easy peasy to grow, edible (partially) and good for our wildlife! Winning!

Chat tomorrow  🙂 xx