My house is not on Google Streetview, which is fair since there is no street. All you see on Google is a gate and a little placard with the name of the house. No sign of any house.
Earlier this week, the landlord sent in two heavy duty gardeners with chainsaws and large machines. The garden had been pretty much untended for over a year (as had the greenhouse, which I why I have two large compost bins full of grapevine trimmings). The farm had cut the lawns but that was pretty much it. I was expecting to spend most of the summer cutting back plants.
The gardeners cut back far more fiercely than I would have. It was two days of botanical Armageddon out there, but they did more in two days than I would have done in two months. The garden is in manageable condition now.
Also I don’t have a chainsaw nor any of the enormously vicious tools they brought with them. This is probably, on balance, a good thing.
Since it’s nearly spring, as evidenced by the rising tide of daffodils and the dying snowdrops, I thought I’d go where even Google dare not go. Up this driveway…
I usually drive up here a tiny bit faster than I probably should. At walking pace there’s time to look around at what’s growing among the banks waiting to be tidied.
The wall was covered in ivy until last week. I’d have left it, personally, but I just rent the place so can’t overrule the landlord. Still, the base of the plant is still there. It’ll grow back. Those are not my car’s tyre tracks. They had a tractor. I did say they were heavy duty gardeners.
The opening in the wall leads to one of the gardens. That garden has flower beds that were seriously overgrown. I had made some attempts at cutting back but the wooded bit at the end of the garden needed someone who isn’t afraid to climb a ladder with a chainsaw. Not me. Me, ladder, chainsaw… I know where that would end up!
The other side of the wall looks like this –
That’s a grain store behind the garage. Yes, the farm is that close! Every day, usually around 5 pm, the local pheasant walks past the kitchen window on his way home from the grain store. One day he was running – he might have been caught in the act.
Down among those trees is Snowdrop Corner –
So, back to the house. There is no actual end to the driveway, it goes right around and down the farm road. I never have to turn the car, I just go up one drive and down the other.
Standing in the second garden, you get a better view of the house.
The greenhouse is now triffid-free, the vines are still there but heavily trimmed. It leaks, and I think the only way to fix it is to take out all the glass and refit it after cleaning it all. That will have to wait for good weather. The scruffy bit on the right is log storage for the wood burning stove and also a mini garden, as if there wasn’t enough garden already.
The bit I’m standing on is another garden. Mostly grass, leading to another wooded area.
Following the drive around, just in time to see the snowdrops outside the kitchen before they die back –
Well, that’s some of the outside of the house. I’ll get better garden pics as the year progresses and things start to actually grow. The grass has started already but I won’t mow it until the snowdrops die back.
This garden doesn’t have a crocus pentacle… yet. Oh, the possibilities!