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Like many people I have no training in gardening.  I have a garden, I have a few books and I do my best.  However it is something that I find very enjoyable and rewarding, and if there are tasks to do, I will quite happily ‘plug myself in’ and while away the hours.  I managed to spend 3 hours yesterday after work doing stuff.  I probably overdid it a little, not finishing till about 10pm (just about enough light) but am pleased with the results.  I like the idea of planning stuff out and seeing how they turn out in the months and years to come.  I’ve even taking to offering suggestions to others in terms of what they can do with their gardens.  Maybe I’m giving lousy advice or maybe I have an eye for this sort of thing, but I’d like to hope my ideas are half decent.

It took a long time to get the garden sorted when I first moved in.  The people before me had been good with houses (more or less, but that’s possibly another post) but clearly gardens hadn’t been their forte.  I wish I had taken a picture of the garden in its original state.  While it wasn’t unusable and I had seen far worse, it certainly had its challenges.

I reckon that it probably took about 5 years to get it to the state I wanted, and I’ve since changed certain areas.  I still have a few plans I’d like to carry through, but much of that depends on the ability to get hold of what I want, and sometimes that is down to the local garden centres.  I know that when I was growing up, the family garden was regularly changed.  I often wonder if there’s an element of the George Lucas quote about films never being finished when it comes to gardens.

I have made some discoveries along the way.  The most amusing one is the story I was told about my patio.  The garden (tiered) was originally 3 levels of grass with a wall around each level and steps down the side.  According to the neighbours, on one day they came back to find that the top level, nearest the house, was now a patio.  From what they can make out the patio was laid more or less straight onto the grass.  I’ve not had grass come through, so how true that is I don’t know, but it’ll be interesting to see what is there if I ever redesign that area.

Some of you might like to know what I have done with the garden, well a summary is as follows.  Patio level is a range of pots with a variety of season and perennial plants.  The middle level is mainly lawn with a border consisting of bulbs that flower at differing times of the years, some ground cover plants and a selection of shrubs for regular colour and more height.  The lower level is a selection of raised vegetable patches, fruit trees and a self-seeding wild bed.