Thursday, 15 July 2010

The garden

As a kid I used to enjoy a great stop-animation programme on the BBC called The Herb Garden. My favourite characters were Dill the Dog and Parsley the Lion, who occupied a walled garden. To enter The Herb Garden you had to spin a bit of magic and say the magic word "herbidacious".

No magic word needed to enter my walled garden, just sleeves rolled up and protective gloves on, I got to work destroying . . . err, sorry, "redesigning" parts of it on Monday.

I've also been kept busy between times as base camp manager for my friend Pauline on her world cycle expedition, mainly solving a technical issue over a faulty stove. She's currently in France and has posted a couple of blogs. Hopefully I'll be joining her in Spain around September.

Back to the garden: I've been meaning to create more storage space in the garden for a while, and this is the week I set my mind to start toward that goal. My intention is to create a new, small, garden tool shed first, about a metre wide by a metre and a half high, and then an extension to the existing shed to create a self-contained bike shed. Finally the inside of the existing large shed will be reorganised and made more damproof so I can use it as storage.

Now you'd think that sounds straight forward enough, but little did I anticipate just how much work would be involved! I've been at it now for three days and I'm still nowhere near building the first one! In order to build the new bike shed, I decided to lay a new concrete base. First I had to move the rain-water barrel, which meant emptying it one watering can at a time! Then I had to remove all the gravel from the two square metres I wanted to use. This, however, presented a problem. Over the years the busy worms had created a layer of soil under the stones, so this had to be sieved out as I went. On top of this I had to relocate the bird bath! A full day, five bags of cement and a sore back later, said concrete base was laid. Then I thought the new position of the barrel looked a bit odd, so not having enough to do I created a new raised border. Another days work!

Finally I turned my attention to the small area of decking which is to be the location of the new tool shed. On closer inspection however the decking is past it's best and so the next task, once it stops raining, is to now replace the decking!

I've also increased the height of the fencing surrounding my garden, firstly in what will probably be a futile attempt to keep out my arch nemesis of the neighbours cat, who has recently returned, for some reason, after an absence of a few months. Secondly I am training a climbing plant through the new mesh of the fence. I may get the sheds built this side of christmas!

Recently the garden has had a new resident enter it in the shape of a frog, which my neighbour has named Henry. We have no idea how Henry got into the totally enclosed garden.

Maybe like The Herb Garden it was a little bit of magic.

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