May must be one of my favourite months in the garden. I’m sad before it’s even over knowing I have to wait another year to see the garden adopt its fresh green foliage. As I discussed in last months post, we finally finished the dry stone wall and in May we launched into digging the paths and central area. We started off by cutting out the paths around the outside before tackling the middle section. We are using all of this turf and soil to create a mound at the back of the garden (that we’ll eventually plant in to).
Now that we’ve dug out the paths around the wall it’s great to see the size of the planting beds around each quarter. Even though we’d measured all of the dimensions I was surprised to see how big these are; it’s going to be exciting to buy the bare root crab apples ‘Evereste‘ in autumn to plant into these new beds. We also started removing the turf and soil from the central part of the wall to level this out, although we kept a thin strip around the main planting area (that we planted into last month) so that this didn’t collapse.
The mixed border has really started to get going now; I think my favourite developments have been the ferns who’s new growth seems almost luminous. The hart’s-tongue fern in the hanging basket has also started to come back, hopefully it will grow even bigger than it was last year. I particularly like how sculptural it looks next to the ivy and heuchera leaves.
On the 19th we visited Loseley Park. This is one of my favourite gardens after visiting it last June. What we took away most from our trip this time was how effective it looks when you can’t see any bare soil at all. In response to this we bought some more foliage plants like hoatsas and evergreen ferns to pad out some areas in our mixed border. I also liked the combination of foliage planting (with different colours and leaf shapes) and drifts of euphorbia dotted throughout. The yellow and green worked beautifully together.
The tallest alliums (‘Mount Everest’) that we planted as bulbs last October have flowered this month. The bees can’t get enough of them which has been gorgeous to watch; it’s given me lots of pleasure to know that we are providing something for them. It will be interesting to see what we are able to attract when we build the pond next year.
The hostas have started to provide a lot of interest at the front of the house and we’ve bought a few more to add to the collection. I love the different shades of green and leaf textures/sizes. We visited Great Dixter on the 27th; we were blessed with the weather and it showed off the spring planting and the house beautifully. Here are three of my favourite photos from the trip.