August end of month (hosted by Helen) finds my garden looking a bit less tired than it usually does at this time of year. I would like to take the credit for this as I have been trying harder not to let the garden grind to a halt in July but I suspect the thing that has had most impact is a rainy August which has prevented things from getting too dry and dusty. I am having a bit of an attack of needing to do something different just now as well so I am intending to enliven (maybe!) my usual pictures with the odd random fact about me. Don't expect them to be interesting, just random.
This is the usual side garden view taken so early that there was no sun on the back border which is the main place in the garden where I am trying to think about autumn. My garden is definitely a spring and early summer garden, or at least it was. I am gently extending its season I hope.
I thought you could see so little of it that I would allow myself an extra couple of photos from a bit closer. Here the perennial rudbeckia is beginning to get going against the drifts of fennel.
Here is the whole of the border with the annual rudbeckia and cosmos sulphereus "Sunset" just beginning to get going. They may not look much to you but I am very proud of them. I grew them from seed as part of my determination this year to become more proficient at it.
There is fine line when you garden in a supposedly naturalistic and closely planted style, as I do, between generous abundance and chaos. This border is just on the right side of the line. The other border, which I am sneakily not showing you a picture of, has crossed the line into simple mess.
Random fact number one: all of my children and stepchildren are taller than I am. This does not in anyway diminish my authority, perhaps because I don't have any now. They are all way too old for telling.
In the orchard most of the crop has been taken off the plum tree but it is still weighted down with the remaining fruit. The grass in the orchard will be cut soon. Last year Ian scythed it. I am not sure if it will be scythed or strimmed this year.
Random fact number two: I find the sight of a scything man very attractive, not just any scything man I suppose.
The cutting garden is the best it has been. It still needs the box to become hedges and I must remember to plant even more closely than I did this year but the basic idea is better than the stripes I had before. Next time I must see if I can find a shorter version of the black cornflower I grew this year. I love it as a contrast, particularly against vibrant yellows and oranges from the other end of the cutting bed, but it did get comprehensively blown over.
Random fact number three: This house, built in about 1610, is the oldest one I have ever lived in. If you live in an old house it is a good thing not to mind spiders who also want to share your space. Luckily spiders don't bother me; slugs now, I hate slugs, and not simply because they eat my plants.
The new hedges are as beautiful as anything else in the garden. This is rosa rugosa in the mixed native hedge.
The moles have been busy. Another beauty of gardening in a natural, nay scruffy way, is that I don't care.
Random fact number four: Despite three years of trying, and the fact that I can understand quite a lot now, I still can't really speak Welsh. Dw'i ddim yn medru siarad Cymraeg.
The kitchen garden will look crisper soon. The hedges are about to be cut: hawthorn, holly along the left hand boundary and yew at the far end. The orange netting you can see here is an attempt to confine the chickens to the far end of the garden. This works fine with the Light Sussex and the Welsummer but the Frisian cockerel and his two hens take not the slightest bit of notice. We are contemplating, with some slight trepidation on my part, wing clipping.
Random fact number five: I have long toes.