End of Month View: Catch Up Time

It’s hard to believe that May begins tomorrow, and although I have recently read that spring is generally believed to be about 20 days behind the norm in the UK I think there will be a huge variation across and within the regions. Our solar panels have registered that April has almost equalled July in becoming the sunniest month since May 2012, and our almost non-existent rainfall supports that unofficial statistic. Some growth and flowering in the garden is indeed a little later, I am sure (beneficial for plum and damson blossom), but the overall impression is that the garden is doing its very best to catch up and make up for lost time. To place where the photographs in this post are taken, follow this link to see a plan of the garden.

The paved area is now framed with the unnamed magnolia, and Viburnum x bodnantense ‘Dawn’ in the biggest of the square pots. The tulips in the large round pot are now in bud, disguising the legs of Rosa ‘Munstead Wood’, whilst the Tulip ‘Peach Blossom’ are progressing well in the pots in the foreground, although the ‘pink’ wallflowers are not.

To the right, the Tête-à-Tête are now past their best and need daily deadheading, and the turf laid last year here is growing quickly to form a thick carpet around them and will have a long wait before it can be cut! In the background the white flowers are on a relatively young damson, whereas the apple trees in front of it will not flower for a few weeks yet.

The woodland is resplendent in its swathe of wood anemones (camouflaging the primroses) and this month’s big surprise of flowers on the two rhododendrons. The bluebells and wild garlic are in bud but not sufficiently so to show any colour in the picture, unlike some of the trees which are leafing up nicely.

The main herbaceous border is looking greener as stalwarts like geranium and astrantia bulk up for this year’s performance, accompanied by species tulips and a range of allim bulbs.

Next to it the clematis colonnade with its underplanting of geranium is livening up, but  already indicating where clematis that did not survive their move need to be replaced.

The woodland edge border needs no more introduction, having been featured so many times already this year with its endless delights.


Through this border to the wall that separates this part of the garden from the fruit and veg area, the left and right hot borders are in-waiting for a floriferous summer, the left side more satisfactorily so although the right side is to be augmented with dahlias this year.


Through the gate, the greenhouse is fuller than it has ever been, the fruit bushes in the fruit cage are in leaf (with redcurrant flowers dangling in any breeze) and there are some healthy (so far) peas and broad beans under netting cloches to deter the perishing pigeons.

The blue & white border was featured in a post recently and is already showing some its true colours:

There is no colour other than green in the rose garden and definitely no buds here yet, but at least the roses are all growing steadily and casting off some of the earlier frost damage to the premature new leaves. New rose leaves are just so beautiful, aren’t they?


Back towards the house, the species snowdrop border is looking more balanced since the sarcococca and hydrangea were moved to their new home, and will hopefully benefit from new summer companions as the year progresses, as well as from increased light following last year’s work on the hedge.

Finally, for this end of month view hosted by Helen the Patient Gardener (and do visit Helen’s blog to see her EOMV and to access links to many others), is another shot of the bed I have been working on in the last couple of weeks, already settling down and looking not quite as new it did at first. I know I have spent time and money recreating my revamped garden over the last year or so, but I am now really beginning to feel that my efforts are going to pay off so please excuse any over-exuberance in my posts!


This entry was posted in End of Month View, Gardening, Gardens and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to End of Month View: Catch Up Time

  1. Pauline says:

    You have so much looking good all through your garden, I seem to have concentrated more on different areas performing at different times, compared to the woodland, woodland edge and now the bog garden, the rest of the garden looks as if its sleeping still, The roses, clematis and peonies are all putting their shoots out, its just that they aren’t very noticable at the moment. Your woodland edge border is my favourite, I wonder why!!

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Pauline – as you say, one has to look closer for signs of growth in some parts of the garden, and to be honest apart from the the woodland edge, woodland and species snowdrop border the rest of the garden has been slumbering all winter, although more plants than I expected retained their foliage. I have now trimmed back the penstemon.

  2. Lea says:

    Looks like everything is really greening up beautifully!
    I like the benches you have to sit and enjoy the results of all your hard work.
    Have a wonderful day!
    Lea’s Menagerie

  3. Anna says:

    There’s a lot going on there Cathy and so much more to come. As with Pauline the woodland and woodland edge are my favourites too 🙂

  4. Hannah says:

    Your woodland edge border really looks lovely, I’m glad you showed it again!

  5. Helen Johnstone says:

    Your woodland area looks fab, so lush. The leaves on my step over apples are only just appearing and I am sure they had blossom on them this time last year. But then I suppose as gardeners we are never happy

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Helen – and I have pictures of when I first began it back in 2000, and the woodland edge border a year late I think (perhaps I will post the before and after…) so yours will get denser and lusher in time too. I have checked back on my apples and they were in full flower on May 5th last year, so they are not yet ‘late’ although there is no sign at all of pink yet

  6. Looks great! I love your brick path and the woodland garden.

  7. Tim says:

    I think your garden looks good. I like your woodland edge, but tell me something. Is that lesser celandine I see. Has it always been there? How do you manage to control it?

    • Cathy says:

      Hello Tim – thanks for sharing my rambles and your kind comments. I believe it is lesser celandine and it didn’t come by invitation! I have managed it up to now by tolerating it, but every time it reappears in the spring I think ‘I’ll have you out!’ but so far it has survived that idle thought. I am increasingly conscious that I tolerated the lamium in the woodland for too long and fought a hard war with it early on in the life of theis blog. Bob Brown in a recent ‘Which? Gardening’ article describes his ritual of digging it of his borders (along with bluebells and muscari) once it emerges in the spring, and then being vigilant in future years – I shall follow suit shortly!

  8. Angie says:

    I think we are all agreed your woodland edge looks great. Everything is greening up and filling up quickly now here too!
    I tend to agree with you re weather conditions and whilst most plants are quite a bit ‘behind’ there are some just doing as they would in a normal April, strange!!

  9. Anna B says:

    It looks great! I particularly like the link to your garden plan. It’s cool knowing how and where it all fits together. I had no idea it was shaped like that! I think it’s great that you’re enjoying the benefits of all your hard work and enjoying your garden so much 🙂 I love looking at it too!

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Anna – I knew it would help because it such an odd shape, going behind the 4 other cottages, some of which have practically no garden at all.

Comments are closed.