Great Garden Plans

I have been mentioning our back garden for quite some time now and we have really been spending a lot of time there recently and to be honest if it is all done before our baby makes an appearance sometimes in July/August I will be very pleased.

Looking at this picture (taken by the estate agent last year) you might think I’m absolutely crazy and that there really isn’t that much that needs doing.

In reality estate agents are extremely good at taking photos which make rooms and now it seems even gardens appear a lot larger, tidier and lighter. It is also true that gardens look a lot better in June then they do in early spring. Let me point out a few areas that need a bit of attention.

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Large conifer hedge

The hedge at the top of the garden consists of some pretty old conifers which are over 6 ft tall. They don’t look particularly pretty and block a lot of light coming into the garden. There are allotments on the other side of the conifers so privacy isn’t a huge issue either. Initially we’ve just taken 2 ft off but then decided to cut them completely and replant a new hedge.

Random hedge on the left

You can’t see properly on this photo but this hedge is a random mixture of different shrubs and trees. There is some privet, elderflower, box hedge, a lot of ivy and some forsythia. Only the ivy, box and privet remains green over the winter when the hedge is a lot more patchy.

Ivy in the apple tree

The poor apple tree is largely covered by ivy. We were lucky enough to taste some apples last year and as they were very good we’re really keen on keeping the tree alive. It does need a lot of pruning and mainly ivy removal as some ivy branches are actually thicker than the apple ones.

Uneven lawn

Again it is hard to tell but the garden is anything but level. There is quite a deep ridge in the middle so the plan is to dig the whole garden over and start again.

Old path and patio

The old path is bordering on dangerous at the moment with large gaps between individual slabs and I’ve managed to twist my ankle on it a couple of times already. We’re going to dig the slabs up and create a new patio and path. We’re going to move the patio to the top of the garden where the play house is on the photo. This spot gets the most light throughout the day and quite late into the evening.

Ash tree

You can just about see the ash tree in the top right hand corner. It grows pretty quickly and requires cutting a couple of times a year. It also means we can’t have a fence panel in the corner which with a little person on the way isn’t ideal. That’s why the tree needs to go.

 

This is the plan for now and I’m sure it will end up evolving as we work our way through it just like other projects we’ve done so far. At the moment we’re mainly cutting down hedges and ivy and I’ve included photos of the destruction in progress below. Sometimes I wish we never started but keep saying to myself that once it’s all done it will be a lot better garden for our expanding family.

 

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Happy Easter

Happy Easter everyone! Hope you had a great weekend. Mine has been largely spent in the garden, breaking my back but in the run up I have found some time to add a few Easter decorations around the house. I had a few more DIY decoration ideas lined up but they haven’t quite gone according to plan. Namely plastic craft eggs are impossible to dye using natural dyes – I know should have thought of that one to start with.

However my own flower arrangements haven’t gone too badly and I’ve got two nice arrangements for £12 worth of white lisianthus, pink roses and mini yellow chrysanthemums.

You can clearly see the eggs around the living room arrangement are very pale colours which while it wasn’t my original intention I am beginning to like. I’ve completed the dining table with some sorbet coloured place mats and paper napkins both from John Lewis.

The Easter tree has been quite straight forward given that we’ve just cut down a lot of hedges and tree branches in the garden. Silver birch has been my favourite for a few years. The only negative is that I’m allergic to it, to get around this I always make sure I pull off all the brown flowers before I bring it in. The eggs are from John Lewis as well – yes I may have raided their discounted Easter goods on Thursday. Pussy willow is firmly associated with Easter for me. My mum always used to have some on display at Easter. My simple twist on the arrangement is filling the vase with painted eggs (plain would work pretty well too). I had some from last year’s Easter tree so I just used them again.

These mini window sill arrangements were very budget friendly with some moss from our garden, cracked egg shells and some apple blossom together with some left over chrysanthemum.

It’s a shame even the long weekends pass so quickly, it is going to be a hard return to work tomorrow. Hopefully it will be another productive week!

 

Nursery inspiration take two

Since my original theme got quite complicated when my dream cot bumper wouldn’t fit our cot I have spent a couple of weeks in denial trying to find a way to make it fit, I then moved onto searching for similar one – which didn’t go overly well and nearly drove me to consider making one myself. For some of you this may not sound too crazy but for me this would inevitably turn into sewing carnage.

Then at the weekend we’ve made a bit of a random purchase – a Noah’s Arc print by Alex Clark, only to find out my lovely mother in law bought us a wooden Noah’s ark toy and before we knew it we had a bit of theme going. Even if my original colours went completely out of the window.

Collage

Rainbow bumper | Noah’s Ark | Cloud mobile | Bohemian nursery | Confetti wall decor | Steiff teddy | Fitted sheet | Book shelf

The new scheme is little bit less matchy matchy and mainly based around random pops of primary colours which I hope will be much easier to achieve.

In other news our garden is slowly been turned up side down (this is true especially for the uprooted conifer trees) and I will share some quite worrying progress photos soon.

In love with hairpin legs

It was through my search of a suitable dining table that I fell in love and have been mad about them ever since. At first I was after a shabby chic cottagey style table with painted legs and rustic chunky top but I did feel that there going to be too much chunky going on for our relatively small dining room and let’s be honest there is only so much cottage charm you can get away with in a 1950s semi without seeming completely deluded. I’ve slowly moved over to the idea of tapered legs to make the room a little more airy and it was then I came across the first hairpin leg dining table. Unfortunately for me most of these come with a pretty hefty price tag like this £895 beauty on notonthehighstreet.com.

What’s helping me remain quite hopeful though is the fact you can pick up a set of 28″ hairpin legs (by the way I am definitely on the three rod style team)on ebay for between £70 and £80 and I’m sure we could rustle up an old table top to sand and stain at a reasonable cost too. So watch this space for some serious diy work!