Monday, 30 December 2013

2013 - My year in review

I started planning what to write for my End of Year review a couple of days ago.  I  found it incredibly difficult to select images from the hundreds I had to choose from.  The stark contrast to 2012 was evident by the sheer glut of images I had from around the garden taken this year.  Despite the slow start come April onwards it was all systems go. 

Iris reticulata March 2013 


Two major disappointments in 2013 - A few good sized Rhododendrons succumb to Cushion Scale.  The attack began back in 2012 and affording the time to individually treat each plant was not an option.  I took the decision to remove 4 shrubs.  I know not if there was a connection to the die back on the middle section of my Holly hedge.  There was a few signs on the undersigns of the leaves but nothing as major as had appeared on the Rhoddies.  I removed the complete middle section of hedge and replaced with new plants.  My budget unfortunately did not allow to buy mature specimens therefore I am now playing a waiting game!  Over the other side of the fence - Jim's weeds did not make this an easy task.  A suit of body armour was required for those nettles.

Nettles, Willowherb and Snowberry in Jim's garden!
The Acer bed was created early 2013 out of necessity really.  I had a couple of container growing Acers that would fair much better in the ground.  As my collection of Primula was increasing - I thought they'd make good companions.  This bed has done really well in 2013.  I've just purchased some P. denticulata Ruby to add to this bed for spring.

Acer and Enkianthus along with a selection of Primula
June 2013
The long curved bed - now affectionately known as the Bumble Bee bed looks good.  Now in it's 3rd year - a bit of thinning out will be required in 2014.  It will be nice to have some of those plants to grow elsewhere in the garden. 
The bumble bee bed
The top bed lost many of it's plants in the flooding of 2012 - I added a few Astilbes in the autumn of that year - I'm rather chuffed with how this turned out in 2013.  A couple of red stemmed Cornus replaced shrubs that perished.  They put on reasonable growth this year but not quite enough to provide the height I wanted.  I will cut them back once new buds appears but not quite so much as I did in March.

As Autumn approached it was still very dry.  I had read that autumn colour might not be as bold as it could be due to the unseasonal warm weather.  It was almost November before the Acers turned. 

There was many unseasonal plants flowering at the tail end of the year none so strange as this Lupin throwing up a flower mid December  The foliage leaves a lot to be desired though!

Picture taken 15 December 2013
Another thing that pleased me the whole year was a distinct lack of slugs and snails in my garden.  My garden is generally over run with the blighters.  Even doing the autumn clear up I was lucky if I found 4 slugs.  Hosta leaves don't usually look as good as this come the end of September!

Hosta sieboldiana Frances Williams
Those who read my previous blog know that the year ends with another project - work has been hampered by the wind and rain.  There are lots of spring bulbs poking their noses up and the hellebores have some flower buds not far from opening.  I can't work in this.......


As my garden moves into 2014 - I am hoping it will be the year of the Front Garden.  As you can see I made a start by painting the fence in September.  I truly lack inspiration on what I want to achieve here.  I will let the privet along the front grow taller - other than that, I don't quite know!  
Front garden September 2013
2013 is the year I truly started to enjoy how my garden looked, I had more success than failure, for a change!  I stopped becoming obsessed with weeding and I harvested seed for the first time so fingers crossed I will have some seedlings come spring time. 

Please join me and other garden bloggers linking their End of Year review with Helen over at The Patient Gardener's Weblog.

A guid New Year tae an ‘a’ a an mony may ye see!

A good New Year to one and all and many may you see!

22 comments:

  1. It was good to look back over your garden of 2013 through the Months Angie.
    I must to look through my photos and do this afore year Is lot.
    Wishin yi a Guid New Year an a yi kin wish fur yir garden in 2014 Angie.

    Wishing you a Good New Year and all you can wish for in your garden in 2014 Angie.

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  2. Not only is it interesting for us to have a review of your garden like this Angie, but I am sure it is helpful for you to see where your successes and not-quites have been over the year - some of your beds have been stunning and you must be so proud of them. have you still got that big puddle on your grass, I wonder....? Happy gardening in 2014, Angie :)

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    1. The puddle has seeped away as the day has went on Cathy - it's still very soggy underfoot. Thanks for your lovely comments - they truly are appreciated. All the best in 2014!

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  3. Enjoyed reading your review, you are such an enthousiastic gardener. Wish you a very healthy and happy new year and lots of success with your garden!

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    1. Indeed Janneke, enthusiastic and keen. I am enjoying learning about the plants I choose for the garden. Wishing you gardening happiness in 2014!

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  4. I enjoyed reading your review. Love your primroses. Your Bumble Bee Bed is pretty too. My big project for the coming year is going to be planting my newly redone front garden. I'm always filled with doubt whenever I take on a project like that. Do you take part in the tradition known as First Footing? My FIL was dark-haired and was apparently a popular first guest in all his neighbor's houses when they lived in Edinburgh. Happy New Year!

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    1. Alison - I grew up in the same house as my grandfather who was tall and dark haired. All the neighbours used to keep everyone waiting until my Papa had First Footed them! It's not such a common practice now and Hogmanay parties are never the same. Thanks so much for visiting and Aw thi best tae you and yours in 2014.

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  5. Thanks for a peek at your garden through the seasons, Angie! I can tell you are a true gardener who perseveres through all the challenges. I love your gorgeous red acer! Thanks for stopping by my own blog and for your nice comment. I really enjoyed putting together my own review; browsing through all the photos was a little like going down memory lane! I wish you a wonderful 2014, and happy gardening!

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    1. Thank you for popping over Debs - you've already worked out that I need perseverance, the wet Scottish climate isn't always conducive to growing the plants I want to grow but I'm learning to love what can grow.
      All the best for 2014 too!

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  6. Gosh, the bumble bee and top gardens look fantastic! You should be proud of your efforts. I have to say, a Lupine in December is truly strange ... but fascinating. It's like the opposite time of year than I would expect them in the northern hemisphere. But how fun to see it. Anyway, everything looks great in your garden and I wish you all the best in 2014. Cheers!

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    1. Beth - how lovely of you too say. Yes, we wouldn't expect a Lupin flower would we! It's nice to see things flowering out of season - it brings back memories of what was! Wishing you health, happiness and good gardening in 2014!

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  7. You could have a natural pond with all that water.You do have some lovely borders.

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    1. You are probably not wrong there Sue - the thought crossed my mind a few times believe me! Thanks for the compliments. A Happy New Year to you and yours!

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  8. Your garden is very beautiful and it's easy to see why you're happy with it. Lovely planting combinations - I like your bumble bee bed (who wouldn't) and the fresh look of the primula border. Have a wonderful new year and lots of fun with your green hideaway, Angie!

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    1. Annette - having fun with the green hideaway is causing me no end of headache! Being not able to get started means I keep changing my mind on what I want to do. If I could just get stuck in then I'd stop having the doubts about what I want to do. Wishing you and yours a very Happy New Year and certainly plenty gardening happiness for 2014!

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  9. Its lovely to see how your borders have changed, you must be so pleased with them, all your hard work has paid off. Wishing you and yours a Happy New Year and lots of fun in your garden!

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    1. Thanks Pauline - Yes, happy with most things and more than pleased that they are coming together. Wishing you all the best for 2014!

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  10. Hi there Angie,
    I can see that I'm going to enjoy your blog, very interesting. Look forward to reading more in the New Year. Take care.

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  11. Not heard if cushion scale, sorry to hear you lost some large shrubs but hopefully you will find something fab to replace them in time. Good luck with the front garden

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  12. Sorry about your rhododendrons, always hard to lose mature shrubs. And I know about nettles - ouch! Your bumblebee bed looks great, though. And that Acer is outsanding! Happy New Year to you!

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  13. Hi Angie,

    Lovely to see the garden through the year, good luck with your new project and I hope the gap in your hedge fills nice and quickly. Luckily I don't quite have the same issues with my neighbour's garden, however I do get lots of couch grass coming through from next door instead, as he doesn't garden but he does keep the lawn cut. The borders next to his garden are generally a nightmare to keep couch grass-free... It's tangling itself around my lovely shrub rose and there's no way to stop it without getting rid of the rose; which I will never do (will definitely have one in the next garden, hopefully minus the couch grass :) )

    Looking forward to another year of spying, oops sorry, watching other bloggers' gardens develop!

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