Scavenger Hunt

Wednesday 28 April 2021

My Cutting Patch

 Hello Folks!

You may remember that I am developing a small piece of land along our driveway into a flower cutting patch.  I've been itching to get at it and now Mr Clicky is home for good, it's all systems go.

The space is roughly 14m by 2m and had been planted with shrubs which had got unruly and overgrown and a clematis montana which was growing over the top.

At the far end there is a cherry tree and a hawthorn which are staying put.

At the near end were some very overgrown cornus (dogwood.)

This end also has a drop of 1/2 metre from the driveway to a path.

I started clearing in February in sub-zero temperatures, I was joined by this robin who sat on the stump of the clematis, so I stopped and had a chat with him.

I chopped everything up as small as I could to fit more into our council green bins.

Even with the bins being collected every fortnight I had to book a trip to the tip to take the larger roots and branches; one of the shrubs needed a chainsaw to cut the stump.

With most of the vegetation gone, I tackled the drop to the path.

I wanted this area to be one level so I can use it more productively, so I needed to raise it up.
I made a u shaped raised bed with pine sleepers, screwed to uprights which I cemented into the ground.

I lined the back with heavy duty plastic to prolong the life of the sleepers.

With the bed made I needed to top up the level of the 'soil'.  In the background of this picture you can see a pile of stone and soil from my neighbour's extension.  I scrabbled through it and got rid of the stones and barrowed it across the road.  This took me 2 days.

The postie steps next to the bed needed a bit of attention so I sorted that too.

Back to the cutting patch now.  I decided to go 'no dig' rather than try to remove a tangled mass of shrub roots.  No dig is attributed Charles Dowding.  In essence you cover your ground with a layer of cardboard to smother any weeds and layer with well rotted manure, garden compost, compost or top soil.  You then plant straight into the mixture you have made, rather than disturbing the microbes, worms and beneficial insects within your soil.

A few weeks ago we covered half of the patch with cardboard.

I found some well rotted manure from a local stables and we spread it all over.

Mr Clicky helped me attach two wooden frames to our wall, these are for sweet peas.  

We drilled holes through the frame at 10cm intervals and I threaded them with twine for the sweet peas to climb up.

Next job was to use old scaffold boards and bits of wood from our pile to make pathways so I can get to my flowers to pick them.  I then topped up the manure with and good layer of peat free compost.

I've even planted some plants!

I have another load of manure coming next week so I need to repeat the process with the other half of the plot.  

I am also growing loads of seeds to fill it.  More on that another day.

That's me for now......Clicky Needles

Friday 9 April 2021

Making, mending and hunting.

 I've been a bit awol of late.

I've been busy in the garden and indoors too.  The weeks seem to meld into one, don't they?

The first thing I have to show you is a rather tired chest of drawers that have had a makeover.  We bought this when Miss Clicky was born 25 years ago as a changing table, it's solid, albeit rather orange.  The front was covered in stickers, which she had added over the years and I spent some time scraping them off.

I painted it in Good Homes furniture paint in a matt grey called Sedona.  I found the ceramic knobs on ebay.

Miss Clicky and Baby Needles came up on Easter Sunday and we had an egg hunt in the garden.   The weather was lovely and we got even got sunburnt.

Eggs were found and some were consumed too.

The cherry tree was alive with the buzzing of bees.

Fast forward to the following day when the promised snow arrived and froze to the roof.

I made a blanket for the dolly that Baby Needles plays with when she visits, he also belonged to Miss Clicky.  It is a miniature of Baby Needles' car blanket.

I've also had to work on Baby Needles' Mousey.  Poor Mousey lost his arm.
But it was sewed back on in a jiffy.

Mousey looking happier again.

Right, that's me for now, have a good weekend.

Clicky Needles.