Sunday, 3 August 2014

The joys of gardening


I love gardening it is always fun to experiment sometimes things work they can turn into a complete disaster. A few years ago we created a gravel garden and it has been a great success. The  plants have thrived and always look so good throughout the whole year.

 It is a bit different way of growing and it has been a surprise to see how easily plants set seeds.




This pelargonium and snap dragon (antirrhinum ) survived outside unprotected all winter

For me these words sum up what I feel about gardening :-

“The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just the body, but the soul."

Alfred Austin, The Garden that I Love, 1894


In the mixed border phlox take central stage

Many years ago a competition was held at work for staff to show a picture of their garden and explain why the garden was so important to them. Those choosen as winners would have a photograph taken by George Wright who is a freelance photographer, workling internationally for newspaper, magazine and book publishers. Everyone who entered (about 14 of us) won the prize! It was such a privilege to have in our garden especially as I had often seen his pictures in the Observer newspaper magazine showing Christopher Lloyd's Garden and Jane Grigson cooking.He also took photographs for the "Room of my own" series that I also loved.

We only have a small copy of the picture as the original is still on the wall in one of the departments at work.

It was about 10 years ago, Linda's tree in the background is small in comparsion to it's size now!



 Luckily we didn't get any of the flash floods this week but it was good for the garden to receive some much needed rain. Our children were both camping this weekend in Cornwall, in different locations, and didn't enjoy the downpour so much!



The garden is so important to me to give me the space and time to "Get away from it all". Daisy's health has continued to decline and this week we have learnt the bad news that she probably has a brain tumour.We are concentrating on keeping her happy, making sure that she has short walks in her favourite locations and also is having more of her favourite food. She has given us so much loyalty and love over the years and is such an important part of our family.

lavender back in June

This afteroon while she was enjoying lying out on the patio in the shade I decided to trim the lavender. I failed to notice a bee hidden under so foliage and it showed it's displeasure by stinging me. As I mentioned at the beginning of the post some things in the garden can be a disaster! At least I had a some time to write a post even if it is one handed!

Sorry for the lack of visiting others at the moment.  Sadly my priorities lie elsewhere at the moment.
Sarah x

49 comments:

  1. You have such a lovely garden. I've never been interested in gardening - I know that I'd like a semi wild, wildlife friendly garden that didn't require much commitment from me, but oh to have a garden of my own... that's the stuff of dreams for me!

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  2. Sarah, I'm so sorry to hear the sad news about Daisy, as you can well imagine. How old is she? Have you had her since a puppy? I don't want to think about when that day comes for me......my heart goes out to you. Your garden is so beautiful and a place of solace, I'm sure. Do you have a date for your move? It must be very difficult with all that is going on with Daisy. I'm sorry.

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    1. Daisy is thirteen we have had her since she was five.There is no date for a move that too has gone a bit haywire this week! Sarah x

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  3. Oh Sarah, so sorry to hear about Daisy. And your poor hand!
    The garden is indeed a place for getting away from it all and yours is so beautiful. Take pleasure from it when you can and take care x

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  4. I am so sorry to hear about Daisy, it is so very sad to watch our loving four-legged friends fade. Am glad your beautiful garden gives you so much pleasure, it was certainly a pleasure for me to see your lovely photos. I specialise in weeds in my garden!!! Take care XX

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  5. I can admire a garden and think how beautiful it looks but unfortunately I do not have a green thumb! Your garden is amazing, all that colour would brighten anyone's day!!!

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  6. How beautiful your gravel garden is, and how beautifully you are caring for little Daisy..

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  7. I am sending much love, many pats and tummy rubs to Daisy. There is hardly anything worse than an ill pet. I have been through these things too many times, but always go back for more of the same. Rudyard Kpiling has a poem that says it all, something like "Giving your Heart to a Dog to Tear" - I am sure you can find it.

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    1. Thank you for pointing me in the direction of this poem, it was good to read. Sarah x

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  8. "The Power of a Dog" - Just remembered the name of the poem.

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  9. So sorry to hear about the bee sting - ouch! Hope your hand feels better soon!

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  10. Dear Sarah,
    Now this is what I call a garden! It is simply beautiful!
    I am so sorry you were stung by a bee.. I know how they love to visit the lavender bushes.. I hope your hand is ok...
    I am heartsick after reading about Daisy's brain tumor... I know how very hard this must be for you... I will say a prayer for you and little Daisy..
    blessings,
    Penny

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  11. Your gravel garden is stunning Sarah. Thinking of you xo

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  12. Your garden is beautiful. I hope that things go as well as they can with Daisy. Thinking of you and sending hugs and all good thoughts. xx

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  13. Lovely photos of your garden Sarah - proof, if proof were needed, that hard work pays off. Sorry to hear about Daisy, very sad news for you.

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  14. What a lovely garden you have Sarah, lots of pretty, colourful things and I imagine scents too.
    So sorry to hear of Daisy , I'm thinking of you x

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  15. Your gravel garden is a rich tapestry of textures and colour Sarah - I am so very sad to learn about your dear little Daisy.

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  16. Your gravel garden looks beautiful, and you have a lot of luck with your pelargonium, I must buy them new each year, because we have no greenhouse, the garden is to small.
    In the moment we have a desaster with moskitos, so I know very vell what you feel with your beebite. I look like a streusel cake, if you know what I meen. This morning I baught two bottles with different medicine against this beasts.

    Sigrun

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  17. Your garden looks great, especially the gravel garden is a jewel. But Daisy, I am so sorry for her, I really hope she has no pain it's hard to see them fading, I must not think of missing my dog.
    Wish you lots of joy in your wonderful garden.

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  18. How lovely to have a professional photographer in your garden. It's looking beautiful at the moment, the gravel is a clever idea. I'm sorry that things aren't good for Daisy. I know she is blessed to have you all looking after her. I'm sending you both a hug. CJ xx

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  19. Sarah, your garden is gorgeous! I can only give you my best wishes that you enjoy the time you have left with Daisy. This is the hard part of sharing our lives with our furry companions. Take care of yourself.....don't overdue right now.....hugs from Canada.

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  20. Hello, what an amazing coincidence. I was also one of the 14 winners of the photographic competition, I believe my photo is hanging in the eye department of the local hospital, where I work!!

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    1. I will have to pop down to the eye department and look for your picture too! Sarah x

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  21. Good morning dear Sarah! The joys of gardening are abundant. Our August is now proving to be the most glorious of months for our flowers are in full bloom and color. Your garden is LOVELY! Much love to you, Anita

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  22. Poor Daisy. Pets are such a bittersweet blessing. But could you imagine life without the pleasure they bring, even if you have to endure the sorrow of the inevitable parting of the ways. We have a gravel garden at the front of our house - now it is more like the Sahara - no rain here in Hastings for weeks.

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  23. Hi Sarah, I've often thought of gravelling my small courtyard garden and having plants in pots instead of trying to grow them in soil...your garden looks beautiful. Really sorry to hear about darling Daisy, so sad when a beloved pet is terminally ill. We all understand you not being able to blog about as you would have before and it's only right that you spend your time with more important things. Sending you hugs Sharon x

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  24. I am so sorry about Daisy. I am so glad you have this beautiful sanctuary to escape to. x

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  25. Your garden is breathtaking and the photos really do it justice. I am sorry to hear about Daisy.

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  26. I do admire your garden - the gravel bed is such a lovely idea and is very pretty too. I'm sorry to read about Daisy, I hope you can keep her happy for a little while yet (I know the feeling well of trying to make sure they know they're loved and keeping them contented when you know there's something very wrong). Take care, Juliex

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  27. Your garden is beautiful, Sarah. I love my being in garden, it is a place to relax and switch off. So sorry about Daisyxx

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  28. Take care - so sorry to hear about dear Daisy. We love our animals so much and they share years of our lives. Maybe it's coming from a farming family (a generation ago, admittedly) but we try to be practical, love them and look after them while they're with us, save them suffering and cry when they leave us - then get another one. They're not replacements, they're never the same, they arrive as puppies and all the love we have to give them is their and theirs alone. I hope Daisy enjoys the rest of the summer with you - she's a sweetheart. Your garden is inspirational - ours is still full of weeds! Never mind - just like you, priorities are elsewhere. Take care of yourself, Sarah.

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  29. Beautiful garden images, I'm missing mine terribly. Very sorry to hear about Daisy, I feel for you at this very difficult time, there's nothing more you can do than spend time together.

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  30. Oh how I long to enjoy an English garden again! Living in the sub-tropics as I do in Queensland, this is an impossible dream, but one can only try.

    I am devastated and heart-sore to hear about Daisy's ongoing fight with a brain tumour. What a dreadful time you must be going through, you and the family. Sending healing hugs to Daisy and you. Lots of love, Hx

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  31. Your garden is beautiful, and I love the quote you shared.

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  32. Your garden is just so very pretty, I can see why you love to spend time in your garden.

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  33. That quote perfectly describes gardening! I'm glad that your garden has turned out so well this year, it looks wonderful. Next year I'll try using gravel also. Sorry to hear about Daisy, I hope she feels better soon. Have a good day Sarah xx

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  34. You have a beautiful garden. I am taking notes, as I would like to revamp a part of my own garden next year. I like the idea of a self seeding garden very much, and it would suit our coastal air too. I'm so sorry to hear about Daisy. I can empathise. Honey is having terrible problems with her eyes, and she may have to have one removed. It is horrible to see her so uncomfortable. Like you, she is being surrounded by love and good things to eat. Thinking of you Sarah xx

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  35. Your reflections on gardening and your photos were so beautiful, then I got to the part about Daisy. I am so, so sorry to hear this news, Sarah. I have tears in my eyes as I type this. Hugs to you...

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  36. Beautiful photo's of your garden Sarah! It's just the way I like it! So sorry to hear about Daisy. Hope she will not be in too much pain! Don't worry about not visiting!

    Take care,

    Madelief x

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  37. I love your gravel garden - so many front gardens in our village have been made over but not like yours !

    Bless Daisy xx

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  38. Beautiful garden and great to see all the photos.....my prayers for Daisy. Our wonderful pets are so much a part of our families.

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  39. Hello Sarah,

    I will pray for your little Daisy. It is hard seeing our pets go through difficult times. They can not speak but we as owners know when something is not right with them. They bring a little sunshine in our lives, just like our gardens do.
    Thank you Sarah for sharing your beautiful garden. I love garden that self seed themselves. You have a wonderful array of plants and flowers.
    Take care and blessings to you and your family.

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  40. Your garden is lovely. I wish our garden was as lush, but we are in the midst of a severe drought and are not allowed to water our gardens.

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  41. The garden looks stunning Sarah.....I wish mine looked anywhere near as good! x

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  42. Your garden is a true jewel and it is so encouraging when things thrive in the garden. Can't say I have experienced that, rather the opposite. I put so much energy in it and keep trying and starting all over but without much success. It is maybe difficult to understand if you haven't experinced it but there is soil that is so difficult nothing really thrives. I often think a garden in the desert may be easier than the heavy clay we have here ;) Or maybe I don't have green fingers afterall.

    So sorry about Daisy. Must be so hard for you and your family. A difficult garden is nothing compared to having to go through difficult situations like you are now.

    Marian

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  43. sarah, im only just catching up with a few favourite blogs and have just read that Daisy is not too good. How our pets cement themselves into our hearts and how hard times like these are for us, to watch as they decline. In 5 days time it will be 2 years since my beloved Sammy left us, and how i still miss his gentle presence. i shall hold both you and daisy in my thoughts.

    Leanne x

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  44. oh, I've just seen your latest post and realised I had missed something... I completely missed the paragraph where you mentioned Daisy when I read this post - I don't think I saw it at all, so sorry. That's terrible news. I can empathise as mum is very attached to her dog, Jodie, and we've had her since she was a few weeks old - she's 14 now and her health is in decline - she has a lot of fits, but on the whole they don't really affect her, she still likes a walk and isn't in pain or anything. It's really sad to hear that Daisy isn't in good health either, is she old too? There's not much I can say really is there, I'm sure everyone else has said all the usual things above and at least you can keep her happy and comfortable.

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  45. Oh dear, poor Daisy. She is definitely appreciative of all the lovely things that you are all doing for her and giving her at the moment. We do what we can to make our little family member feel less bad. Bless her sweet heart.

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  46. Your garden is so beautiful. I really love the last picture. I've had to make hard choices with elderly dogs, too. Their lives are just too short.

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