End of month view

I am away down to Oxford for a couple of days tomorrow to help older daughter get ready for a trip to Japan with her six month old baby and to see younger daughter's progress with unpacking after her big move out of London into the country.  So here is a slightly early end of month view.
Here is the side garden, now awash with geraniums, aquilegia, verbascum and peonies.  I am going to show you some close ups too, just because I love them so much.

These paeonies will be over so soon but there foliage is a meaty contribution even when the flowers are gone and the flowers themselves are so luscious I would have them if they flowered only for a day.

The aquilegia by contrast have been going for a while and will keep flowering for a few more weeks yet.  I love the way they self seed and the different colours and shapes they throw up.  This pinkish one is a gentler softer colour than I would usually like but it is just perfect.
This is looking down through the new little orchard.  The apple blossom has faded and the daffodils are gone but  this is the area where I am planting wild flowers.  For weeks I have had trays full of oxeye daisies, honesty, teasels and field scabious in the greenhouse and coldframes.  I know that visitors have raised the occasional eyebrow at my pots full of weeds.  This weekend has seen the end of the huge task of planting them out.  They don't look much yet.

This I promise you will be a patch of oxeye daisies next summer.  It has been hard work planting out in the lush grass but here and there the visiting badgers have been of help.

Here is where they have been digging, looking for chafer grubs I think.

Producing a perfect little hole into which to slip a teasel.

But already there are patches of beauty: buttercups under the apple trees.

Sweet rocket around the silver birch.

And grasses which are themselves beautiful.

Here is the cutting garden, the sweetpeas beginning to twine up the mesh, the lavender stripes filling out, the irises and the echinacea looking healthy and solid.  Not many flowers yet.  I have been planting out cosmos and zinnia grown from seed and it will be the annuals which fill this with colour, scent too from the sweetpeas, and scent from the lavender.  Globe artichokes are here too.  We will eat them until we get bored with the whole palaver, but some will go to flower and the flowers are as beautiful as any.

And here is the kitchen garden.  It would look better if the raised beds didn't need to be netted against the chickens but I couldn't bear not to let them roam so protecting the crops is a necessity.

The chickens are even in the side garden, the closest this place gets to formality (still pretty much a sprawl, but a thoughtful sprawl I hope).

Oh I love May.  I wish I could hold it in my hand and keep it for a little longer.


  1. Everything looks so pretty especially the kitchen garden. You have worked so hard. Enjoy your time away :-)

  2. It's looking fantastic - so much promise. May is a wonderful month. next year with all your wildflowers it will be better again.

    Our daisies are just flowering on the bank - was it only a year ago we sat and looked at them - you with your feet up - a well deserved rest halfway through the Offa's Dyke walk?

  3. All looking good. Agree with you about May - wouldn't it be great to press a pause button :)

  4. All beautiful and lovely. Your peonies are amazing.

  5. Peonies look beautiful! Mine are about to bloom..pink
    Well, our weather is making May leave with little sorrow on our part.It's rained non stop for weeks.But, my grandson reminded me that rain is what makes things grow. Hope your trip was nice. take care.

  6. Your May garden is so very lovely. If I imagine the English countryside (okay, the Welsh countryside!) this is how I imagine it - lush, rolling, blue sky and impossibly green fields.
    Gorgeous photos.

  7. It looks wonderful. Much better than I had already assumed. You don't speak of it proudly enough.

  8. You certainly have a wonderful looking garden. I love chickens,
    too. yvonne

  9. Oof, I'd give my eye teeth to peep at your garden for real Elizabeth. It looks wonderful. I'm confused about sweet rocket though - is it different from the salad rockets or is it related to them? Is it a perennial?

  10. Oh Elizabeth, your garden looks so beautiful. Enjoy your time at Oxford. Hope Your daughter has a fabulous trip to Japan.

  11. Wow! How do you do all that and find time to blog about it too. It is amazing.

  12. thanks for joining in again with the end of month view. I like the mesh for the sweet peas - what a good idea. I can't wait to see your orchard when the wild flowers start to bloom

  13. Beautiful! I love your inviting side garden and the kitchen garden is wonderful- netting and all.

  14. What a wonderful garden you have. I just love the peonies - I remember them from my Aunt's Surrey garden. Here in the north of New Zealand I don't think they would do well at all.

    Look forward to more of beautiful Wales.

  15. Ah how I envy you , wish I had some land to plant things on. One day maybe... I personally wasn't sad to see May leaving, Sofar June is trying to make up for all those rainy May days.

  16. What a pretty garden you have - we love aquilegia too! Hope the kitchen is going along nicely!

  17. Gorgeous, gorgeous... thanks for sharing!

  18. My garden is no-where near so large as yours (though still quite big as city gardens go), but I have toyed with the idea of chickens. I work in a market town and a lot of my colleagues have chickens. My problem would be the foxes. My hens would never be able to run free and I don't think I could cope with that.


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