I ♥ my garden - episode 1 - the original jungle

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Just a word of warning. This started out as a quick post intending to give you an overview of what the garden first looked like and maybe lightly hinting at some changes I intend to undertake. Hahaha. Good joke ! I ended up with a 5 page Word document (yes, I like to prepare my blog posts in Word… call me nerd) and still, I hadn’t finished.
So in an effort not to bore my readers to death, I’ve split this topic up into several posts. Not sure how many, since I’m still not finished… We’ll see.

But here we go, with episode 1 - the “before” ! Which in many ways is actually much nicer than the “during” (no “after” yet, I’m afraid). Anyway. I’ll shut up now and get to it.

One of the main drives behind my decision to move was the yearning for a bigger outdoor space and ideally a garden. Yes, my cat herd would certainly benefit from more space, but most importantly so would I. If you’ve followed along over the years, you will have noticed that I’m not much of a traveler, but I do love to visit the UK. I mean, with car boot sales and antiques centres on every corner, could there be a better holiday destination for a self-professed vintage addict ? But over time (and I’ve been visiting England for more than 25 years), I also fell in love with that particularly British enthusiasm for fine gardens and gardening. One of my greatest pleasures during my UK vacations is visiting historic gardens and assisting my brother in his allotment and tiny suburban garden. Call me freak.
So when I visited my (future) new home, I immediately fell in love, not only with the charming interior, but also with the enormous outdoor space and all the potential it offered.

Here’s another pic I took during the second walk-through back in June (I can’t believe how lush and green everything was then !).

And here are some later ones from back in October (I think I took these right after signing tthe purchase deed).

As you can see, it’s a typical, rectangular walled town garden (with the neighbors' very nosy ginger cat paying a visit). I’m still impressed by its size though: a good 6 m wide by 30 m long, so about 180 m² in total (that’s about 1940 square feet in American). It’s even the biggest garden I visited during my home search and - bloody hell ! - I can’t believe it’s mine… MINE ! Btw, it makes me laugh when I hear this sort of space called a “small” garden on shows like BBC’s Gardener’s World… I mean, come on. It’s more than double the size of my flat. And to have this much outdoor space right inside a busy city centre area? It’s a real luxury ! And by no means “small”.

As you can see on the photos everything was pretty much left to its own devices for years. Shrubs are consequently very overgrown and my building neighbors used part of it as a dumping ground for a lot of their rubbish (I’m still trying to get them to move their stuff. Arrrggghh)... There is one very lovely feature though - about half-way into the garden - a very old and massive hazelnut bush (more of a tree really) is arching over the whole width of the garden and creating a very agreeable seating area underneath.
I’m sure I’ll mention this more than once. But dude, am I looking forward for spring and summer !

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