Garden Observation


Happy new year to you!

I know it’s not quite new year yet, but I’m sure that you are, like me, looking towards 2017 and starting to think about your plans and ideas for the year ahead.unnamed-1

I’ve been living in my new home, a fifties semi-detached house on the edge of town, for over a year now, and so I’ve had plenty of opportunity to observe the garden through all stages of the cycle of seasons. So far this Winter – and the last – I’ve particularly noticed that we live inside a frost pocket. We are on a north facing slope, with a tall bank of trees shadowing us. In high Summer, we get the sun at the back all day long, and into the evening too, but in the Winter, the sun does not reach us.

We knew this when we bought the house (that the trees would likely block out the Winter sun) and thankfully this isn’t too much of a concern for us because the aims we had for moving here were not predominantly about growing food. If I was looking for somewhere new to live in future in order to create an extensive permaculture garden, the aspect and soil would be top priorities. But in our present case, our top priorities were to buy a property that would adequately house our growing family (two adult teenagers) and to be in a good location for them, while giving ourselves a moderately sized project that I could still manage while taking care of my delicate health.

unnamedSo far inside the house we have improved the bathroom and first floor rooms, and the stairs leading up to the loft room. We have installed solar and cavity wall insulation, taken out an unnecessary partition wall downstairs and installed a wood burning stove. In 2017 we are due to start the rest of the work on the ground floor. We managed to get a solid oak floor in the sale, which is now stored upstairs in my studio while we get started on the building work. We have plans to create a porch on the front of the house to give the open living space of the ground floor a buffer to the outside world, and to keep the heat in when going in and out. We’re going to replace the dated kitchen and knock a bigger hole through the kitchen wall where the 50′s hatch is, in order to improve the open plan feel and connectivity between kitchen and dining space.

I also have plans to start work on the front garden at last. In a future blog I’ll show you the design on paper. I have found a good contact who will help me implement my design, as there is quite a lot of landscaping to be done.

I’m really excited about 2017! Have a great new year :)

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