Plant a tree

The autumn leaves of the Prunus Chocolate Ice contrast beautifully against the Silver Birch

Since moving here in late December there has been little if no time for the garden. We have renovated the house to a liveable standard, and have spent any other spare moments with (oh so glamorous) trips to the tip to get rid of all the rubbish accumulated while moving. When we inherited the garden it was as described here:

130ft long by 40ft wide; boundaries market by a brick wall on the right and across the back and a wooden fence on the right; a very mature pear tree to the left of the decking near the house; a large tree stump about 5ft high in the first third of the garden, which we took down as it was completely rotten; a twisted dwarf willow tree at the rear of the garden near the wall; a delipidated shed at the bottom of the garden; a broken swing and rotary washing dryer. There are various other bushes and plants in the two long borders that stretch on either side of the lawn (which incidently covers the whole garden!)

With such a blank canvas it’s hard to know where to begin. So I made notes of things I love and have always wanted in my imaginery garden. For me this included some fruit trees and bushes, a vegetable patch, an area for the children, and just lately a coastal/mediterranean area (I have a pinterest page here for that)

Today it was warm and the air felt spring like and inviting so I decided to plant my first tree, in this case a Silver Birch. I decided to plant it where the fallen tree was, as I wanted to be able to see it from the dining room window and hear the leaves moving from the deck when sitting outside. I have planned to plant an ornamental cherry Prunus Chocolate Ice nearby as in the autumn the juxtaposition of the leaves make a wonderful contrast in shape and colour. I wrote about the aniticpation of planting these in my post Dreaming of my New Garden in my last blog.

When digging the earth for the first time, I was thrilled to discover a good foot of crumbly black topsoil which looked rich in matter-every gardeners dream! I was expecting thick clay being so close to the downs, or heavy flint as we are very near the sea.

So I spent my first dusk in the garden with a cup of tea, listening to the chaffinches and blackbirds sounding alarm before bed.