Winter 2008

Winter 2008 1During 2007 I built all the hard structures that are currently in the garden.

So when the winter snows of 2007/8 hit, the garden area was littered with building materials - bags of sand, stacks of bricks and pavers and the ubiquitous yellow builders bucket!

Autumn 2007 was the first time I purchased winter planted pots and winter bedding plants. 2 of the pots can be seen to be poking through the covering of snow.

This Winter 2008 view shows the upper garden platform, steps up to that level, steps from the lower level and the path made of blue pavers and a concrete slab.

Winter 2008 2One thing about a snowy winters day in the UK - you usually get crystal blue skies, with just a whisp of white cloud.

This is the view from the upper level, over the fence and looking at the surrounding trees.

Also in shot is my neighbours home made shed - was once a traditionally styled 6ft x 4ft Apex roofed building (in a different location in the garden). The man of the house dismantled it and rebuilt it in its new position with a flat roof.

Not a really smart move because all the snow settled on the roof and created a dip in the centre that has subsequently formed a small pond.

Winter 2008 3

This view show the steps up from the lower yard, the raised planter and featuring one of the winter planted pots - there are plants there somewhere under that snow!

Almost all of the hard landscaping was built from materials that were in the garden already - my Dad was a hoarder of bricks, always on the basis that "it will be useful one day". Well it has been and I just know he is up there looking down with a knowing smile.

I did get some of the blue pavers from the contractors working 4 doors up, who had ripped up the yard at that house to lay a new water pipe and were about to throw the pavers in a skip!

Winter 2008 4A few of the red bricks were left over from the movement of wallas internally in my house, when I had the alterations done for Mom to return from the care home.

In this view the 3rd of my raised planting beds, made fentirely rom reclaimed bricks is seen. Some of these bricks have the depression in the top that is designed to take the mortar when building walls (its official name is a "frog").

These particular bricks show a makers name & date in the frog and I have chosen to make a feature of those bricks. All were made in Birmingham, all by brickworks that no longer exist and all were made in the early days of the 20th Century.

Winter 2008 5The second of my raised beds - deliberately made to be slightly lower than the thrid (its close neighbour) was also totally made from reclaimed "red" bricks.

The aluminium hoop that can be seen is a hand-rail set into cement to aid Mom getting down onto the seat I have built into the end of this raised bed. And more importantly, it will help here to get upright again!

When not covered in snow, I will add a padded seat to the seat corner for comfort. Its a lovely position, shaded by the garden wall but surrounded by fragrant and colourful flowers.

Some flowers forcing their way through the snow.

Winter 2008 7The first of my raised planting beds encloses the original climbing rose.

It is nice to see some of the winter bedding plants put in the ground in Novemberar thriving under the covering of snow.

This planter is also made from reclaimed red bricks and a few concrete building blocks - salvaged from the old garden border that was demolished during the house conversion in mid 2006, when the builders were trying to find the sewer route from the property.

This raised bed is the first you see from the house and divides the bins area from the rest of the garden.

Winter 2008 8General view up the yard from the beside the back door.

Once again we see that crystal blue winters sky and the trees in my neighbours gardens.

In this view you get a good impression of how small the available space is and how well I have managed to use that space to provide reasonable planting areas.

The two window boxes are visible - well one actual box and the shelf for the second one. And so is the bracket for the summer hanging basket.

The space between raised bed one and two is used to store reclaimed roofing slates and where I keep my buckets and watering cans.

Next major jobs:

Decide on the manufacturer of the shed and get a new one to fit onto the platform at the top of the garden (the old shed my Dad built is literally slowly falling apart.

I also need to get the kitchen window frame replaced - it is rotten!