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stormchaser1s back garden


stormchaser1

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Posted
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport

    Morning everyone

    We purchased this property off the council last June , and i have now decided to try and get the garden to how i want it .Its a very long garden and quite wide [sEE PICTURES BELOW]

    WHAT im requesting is a bit of long shot , but you never know if you dont ask!!!

    Anyway years ago i was into landscaping , but not designing , if there is anyone out there who could help me proberably design the garden or give me a few ideas what i should do i would be very grateful

    PICTURE NO6 looking to the house from the back of the garden ,, to the right of the path this area i already have planned out , as i want this area to be a vegtable patch

    The house was built on a old bog , but the soil is in very good condition

    THE SUN

    during the morning the sun is to the right of the path looking at pic no 6 . that is looking east. Behind me is south and to the left of the path is east

    Nigel

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    Posted
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport

    sorry

    i forgot to mention , when we moved in the grass at the back was just over Knee high ,[ and im not exaggerating , the previous tennant just let the garden grow wild , which was a shame ,

    This is a challenge for me , and one i hope to complete prob in a few years time hopefully!!!

    nigel

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    Posted
  • Location: Brixton, South London
  • Location: Brixton, South London

    Nigel I am not a garden designer but I am a fairly keen gardener.

    A few preliminary thoughts:

    1. Think about what you want from a garden: somewhere to relax, fruit/veg production, how much time are you willing to put in, do you have young children/dogs? [Alsations and football-mad boys will dictate a simpler/more robust design than otherwise]. If you want a green house later set aside a sunny spot. Try to find space for a garden shed. Work out where you want to sit out/barbeque etc.

    2. Think about creating a garden as a long term continuing task: do not rush in; if funds are tight rather than shoddy work delay until you can afford quality materials.

    3. Work with what you have: consider microclimate (you will have fairly lowish rainfall and can expect ground frosts from about early October to mid May), aspect/exposure (you have a light sunny but unsheltered and overlooked site), soil type. Check the ph of your soil (my guess is that it will be quite acidic as it was a former bog: check that any plants/shrubs are suitable for your soil), drainage?

    4. The soil/grass should be rotavated esp as it has not been cultivated for years. Invest in large quantities of manure (heat treated to avoid germinating weed seeds) and dig in to improve soil structure and nutrients.

    5. Plan a lay out on squared graph paper before undertaking any laying down of hard surfaces such as paths etc.

    6. Try to use hard materials that match your house: i.e red bricks (can be laid down in a herring-bone pattern for paths): avoid expensive York stone or imitations. Concrete paving slabs are cheap but ugly. Vary materials by adding gravel but beware of too many different materials as the end result will be a mess.

    7. The greatest challenge I suspect is the shape of the garden: try to avoid long straight lines/borders as they will only empahsise the length. Instead consider using a combination of sinuous/curving lines and a division of the garden into separate areas or "rooms" by creating hedges/trellised climbers that partially cut across the garden.

    8. Try to create a focal point in each of the separate areas such as a small fine tree or a circular bed of roses etc.

    9. To give structure and some privacy consider planting trees at the back (avoid Sycamores: ugly self-seeding nuisances or dull Leylandii; fruit trees?)

    10. Beds should be edged with brick so that you can build up the soil each year with mulches (improves soil structure, nutrients, supresses weeds, helps water retention and looks neater) without the soil spilling over.

    11. Have a balance of evergreens, shrubs that have attractive foliage/shapes in winter as well as flowering plants/shrubs. Try to ensure that even in the depths of winter there is something of interest and avoid the temptation to go for plants that all share the same 3 week period of glory and leave you with nothing else.

    12. Use large terracotta/glazed pots and lined wooden planters on hard surfaces such as patios/terraces as you can move them around according to season.

    13. Invest in quality spring bulbs as with some research you can ensure a succession of flowers from February to early June (try Bloms or Van Tubergen who both have fine catalogues).

    14. Beware of the temptations of garden centres: plan what you want from them and try not to splurge out. Get hold of specialiost catelogues and do some home-work before buying.[For roses try David Austin,Mattocks or Peter Beales].

    15. Use annuals sparingly as they are expensive and labour intensive: use them to complement perennials.

    16. As well as considering the foiliage/flower balance try to ensure that colours will sit happily together: e.g. white, blue, yellow; red, yellow orange...

    17. Plant taller plants/shrubs at the back of a border and the smallest plants near the front.

    18. Remember that plants/shrubs will grow over time so avoid crowding a bed initially: things may look a little bare or sparse at first but will fill out.

    19. With the exception of large shrubs/trees try to avoid planting 1 or 2 plants of the same type: try at least 3 or more to avoid bittiness: less is more!

    20. Invest in some decent garden tools such as a spade, large fork, small forks and trowels, a Dutch Hoe, secateurs, a hose on a reel, 2 large watering cans and a large sprayer for tackling bugs/diseases.

    Good luck

    Regards

    Andrew

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    Posted
  • Location: Cheddar Valley, 20mtrs asl
  • Weather Preferences: Snow and lots of it or warm and sunny, no mediocre dross
  • Location: Cheddar Valley, 20mtrs asl

    To all the good advice above can I please add a few extras....

    By all means work the garden in stages as budget allows but to get the best overall cohesive flow vital for good garden design, design the garden as a whole from the very beginning rather than think about it in bits as budget allows.

    As the house was built on a bog the soil should be fairly fertile but likely to be subject to poor drainage, as well as digging in manure, add plenty of grit. If this is too onerous to contemplate, then choose plants according to the soil type, there are plenty of moisture lovers.

    Instead of imposing a pathway upon the garden, figure out the natural fall of footsteps; to the shed, the washing line etc and plan accordingly. With the best will in the world, no one sticks to paths if it's not leading to where they need to go and you'll just end up with muddy patches.

    Any area to be cultivated is best treated with a Glyphosate weed killer first, two applications may be necessary. It is completely harmless to pets and wild life and becomes inactive as soon as it is dry. Beware though it works upon the chlorophyll in the plant cells-the stuff which makes leaves green, so it will kill anything that colour-beware of wind drift when applying.

    The veg patch will be much easier to look after and more productive if it is created using raised beds, tanalised timber is fine. The beds should be no wider than you can reach to the middle of from either side. Once created and filled with soil and manure so long as you do not walk on them, they will not need digging and are far easier to shield from pests and diseases than open ground.

    When it comes to using colour in planting, the most restful designs are created using a limited palette, too many colours all together rarely work outside stately home proportions. Hot colours, the reds, yellows, oranges etc will foreshorten a view, handy for a long narrow garden as they tend to make it appear wider but shorter. Pale, pastel colours will lengthen a garden and if planted toward the end will make it appear longer. Dark, shady areas are best lightened with golden variagated shrubs or yellow flowered plants, not white as they can make it appear even gloomier

    If you do decide to divide the garden into separate "rooms" they shouldn't be completely cut off from the rest of the garden, allow glimpses through from one to another.

    When it comes to buying plants, if you are self employed or know someone who owns a company or are a dab hand at knocking up letter heads then if buying from catalogues always ask what, if any trade discounts apply. The companies only ask for company credit checks if you are asking for credit, many ask for payment with the order anyway. You'll be amazed at the mark up that garden centres add, usually doubling, sometimes tripling the wholesale price and that makes a huge difference when you've got a whole garden to plant. To the list of suppliers can I add Parkers for bulbs, far cheaper and superior size bulbs.

    Last of all, be honest with yourself about the amount of time you will have or want to spend maintaining the garden and plan accordingly; if you can't be bothered cutting a hedge or don't have time, don't plant one, the last thing a garden should be is a hassle.

    Good luck!

    p.s A pond will attract many pest eating animals and a wonderful array of wildlife.

    p.p.s Don't forget climbers and perfume

    Oh, and a plea from the heart, please, please, please be an organic gardener. It may take a season or two but if pests are left well alone, they quickly attract predators and very quickly the garden achieves it's own balance. You'll never get colonies of ladybirds if there are no greenfly for them to eat. Frogs and toads from the pond devour copious amounts of slugs or try a couple of ducks; they don't scratch and trample like chickens but wander around rooting under plants with their beaks seeking out every slug around; they might come in through the cat flap but that's another story.....

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    Posted
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport

    Morning Jethro and ac brixton

    Thanks for the advice , i really appreciate that , thanks for your time and effort. One thing where in no rush to move yet , ive always wanted a garden this size , and i know the garden is going to take time to take shape , but when its done [well the garden is never completed]

    THANKYOU AGAIN

    NIGEL

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    Posted
  • Location: Kingdom of Fife: 56.2º N, 3.2º W
  • Location: Kingdom of Fife: 56.2º N, 3.2º W

    All excellent advice above, especially with regard to a pond. :rolleyes: .

    One thing I would add to the 'tools' list would be a trailer for collecting and shifting stuff about.

    AND!

    Get onto your local Freecycle group(s). Slabs, bricks, rockery rocks, plants even sheds and greenhouses all come up from time to time.

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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    nothing to add to the two first class posts you have.

    The main thing is to plan the whole not do it bit by bit. Okay it will look a mess for some time as your budget/time slowly allows you to end with what you want. Its worth it, believe me. Yes to a pond, and try to get running water somewhere some how, even if its just one of these fountain effects from a garden centre. The sound of running water is very soothing.

    Do not have straight lines up and down your garden. Your garden is long, so try to make it wider by the use of diagonal lines, and don't just do the garden from one end to the other. Create 'apparent' ends to different areas, that make one want to go into the next section to what there is. At the bottom of the Gorden, if its possible, try to incorporate what is beyond your garden, especially if its an open space. Even if its not, use it to give the allusion your garden stretches further.

    There are all kinds of 'tricks' to give the appearance your garden is longer, wider. Spend happy hours reading how on the web or from your local library. Above all, enjoy your garden, as you develop it, and once you THINK its finished. Its not, after a while you will want to change things here and there, another joy of gardening. Also make sure you take photos of each stage.

    You can look on my web site at how I changed mine, its great fun.

    rabbitted on long enough, and so much for having nothing to add. Typical gardener logic!

    cheers

    John

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    Posted
  • Location: Brixton, South London
  • Location: Brixton, South London
    once you THINK its finished. Its not, after a while you will want to change things here and there, another joy of gardening. cheers

    John

    Just to pick up and emphasise that point made by JH: no garden worth the name is ever "finished" [it took me a long time to accept and welcome that...]: 1. Plants/shrubs/trees may in time outgrow their space and will need to be cut back or in extreme cases replaced;

    2. Disease/pests/sever late/early frost/drought/gales/unusually heavy and destructive snowfall may all weaken or even kill things you have planted and will have to be replaced;

    3. New varieties that are hardier/better suited to your garden or simply more attractive will become available;

    4. Taste and fashion change over time.

    Wheb replacing things try to keep to the broad putline of the original plan; if that is impractical consider carefully whether replacements will sit happily with the existing elements of the garden.

    Regards

    Andrew

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    Posted
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport

    Thanks everyone

    For your advice !! really appreciate the tips ...

    well ive made a start in the garden , ive managed to double dig from the wall to where the washing line is , its been hard work , but its getting there !! im off for two weeks now and hopefully there should be some more improvement in that period of time ,

    Ive also managed to Sow two rows of Parsnips , did that yesterday ,

    Anyway thanks again for your help !! ,

    i will keep adding pics of the garden as it develops

    Nigel

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    Posted
  • Location: Norton, Stockton-on-Tees
  • Weather Preferences: Snow and cold in winter, warm and sunny in summer
  • Location: Norton, Stockton-on-Tees

    Good luck with it Nigel!

    I've decided that this summer I'm going to devote a lot of time to our garden. It's looking ok but I want it to be very child friendly for the mini-AM's as well as having a plethora of summer flowering bulbs and herbs. TBH, it's mostly cosmetic stuff as the lawn is looking quite good.

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    Posted
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport

    Managed to do some more digging today , and ive also got my first vegatables sown .

    Sown 2 rows around 100 peas and also ive sown 2 rows Lettuce . Also i managed to get get the Trimmer out and cut the lawn in the back garden , still plenty of work to be done ,

    Tomorrow will do some more digging and i also have two packets of Parsnips and 2 Packets of Carrots to sow

    nigel

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    Posted
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport

    Just a few piccys to show whats been done today , and im bushed

    nigel

    Hopefully all the left hand side of the garden should be cleared within the next couple of weeks [ weather permitting] yep im on holiday so i can concentrate on the garden

    nigel

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    Posted
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks
  • Location: just south of Doncaster, Sth Yorks

    yep, hard work but worth it in the end.

    Just a quick post about trying to make the garden look wider?

    not sure if you think this very very quick sketch gives you some idea of how doing away with straight up and down lines.

    garden_bit.doc

    John

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    Posted
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport

    John

    Thanks for that ! will look into that . Next year the Lawn on the right is going to be lifted and relaid, and thats the side i will look at trying to widen

    Thanks again

    nigel

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    Posted
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport

    Just a couple of arieal shots [ taken from my computer room] two minutes ago . this is what ive managed to do so far . think this year im just going to be concentrating on the garden to the left , which ive already started on

    yes you prob noticed the weather station too ,, dont worry this is going to be resited and placed in a proper Stephenson Screen when this part of the garden is done. also the wind vane is going to be placed on the chimney so i can get more of an accurate reading regarding the wind

    nigel

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    Posted
  • Location: Cambridgeshire Fens. 3m ASL
  • Location: Cambridgeshire Fens. 3m ASL

    Made a good start there Nigel. :)

    Will the deflection off the roof alter the wind? I'm no expert mind.

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    Posted
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport

    Just a quick update ,

    Working in garden since 0800 hrs this morning , more digging , and alot more progress made so far this morning.

    nigel

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    Posted
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport

    Temp has shot up to 13.2c warmest day so far this month , slight breeze WNW few Ci clouds lingering all in all a perfect day for gardening

    Found my first ladybird in the garden as well this morning [this year]

    nigel :yahoo::yahoo:

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    Posted
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport

    Well everyone i have nearly got the vegetable garden finished , its been hard work the last couple of days [ i must admit i have had a bit of help the last two days also , but im chuffed to bits so far

    Nigel

    Temp today 19.1c

    yesterday max 18.1c

    glorious day

    nigel

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    Posted
  • Location: Brixton, South London
  • Location: Brixton, South London
    Well everyone i have nearly got the vegetable garden finished , its been hard work the last couple of days [ i must admit i have had a bit of help the last two days also , but im chuffed to bits so far

    Nigel

    Temp today 19.1c

    yesterday max 18.1c

    glorious day

    nigel

    Impressive work Nigel: hope your back is ok etc.! Unless you are used to this sort of thing a bit of stretching before you start can help.

    Kind regards

    Andrew

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    Posted
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport

    Andrew

    Thanks for the comments, and also thanks to weathermaster for his comments too

    Back is ok its just the old Knees ,which are playing up now , but still the main graft is done for now !

    I have had a bit of help the last two days , which has been a great help , i dont think i would have finished this section otherwise , well i would have done but it would have taken longer

    Years ago i used to do landscaping , so im used too this type of work , but i havent done this much to a garden for some years

    nigel

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    Posted
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District 290 mts. Wind speed 340 mts
  • Weather Preferences: Rain/snow, fog, gales and cold in every season
  • Location: Derbyshire Peak District 290 mts. Wind speed 340 mts

    You've cracked on well with that, Nigel; looking at the photo's it doesn't look as if it's been dug for some time so it would be pretty heavy going. It doesn't look as though your neighbours do much gardening, beware things creeping through/under the fence later in the season.

    T.M

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    Posted
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport
  • Location: North Kenton (Tyne-and-Wear)6miles east from newcastle airport

    Evening TM

    Thanks for that ,, last time i attempted the garden was last year , but it just got too much [also lack of time] i work 12 hours a day during the week from 0630 till 1830 at night , then at night im doing a computer coarse ,for an hour , im studying to be a senior support technichian. At the weekends i get a few hours spare in the afternoon and Sunday is the same , so you can see there isnt enough hours in the day. However im off now until the 16th april [holiday] and i thought that i would give the garden a bit more attention.

    It has been a gruelling last few days , but i have had a bit of help over the last couple of days , which has helped alot.

    The garden on my left is owned by a couple of old people , and the bloke usually keeps his garden neat and tidy , he started on his today , trying to tidy up after winter.

    And the garden to the right of me a single mum lives in there , however the council supposed to be coming and sorting her garden out for her ,

    nigel

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    Posted
  • Location: Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, USA
  • Location: Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, USA

    Niagel did you do all of that in one day?

    Well done to you *looks out window* my garden is a little grassy patch basically 5 plants would fill it up!

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