Monday, September 21, 2009

Further to the Orchard post...

The great guys at The Tree & Garden Group LTD came and staked all the trees in the orchard, laid down 1m square mats of coconut husk down around each tree and then mulched the orchard. The husk is a natural product which prevents the growth of grass etc around the trees, is water permeable, and along with the mulch, will help regulate the soil and root temperature over summer and stop the plants drying out.

It is now looking much more like an orchard. We are hoping to get the holly (Ilex aquifolium) and Beech (Fagus sylvatica) hedging laid around the orchard as well this spring.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Spring at Willowbrook and the start of our Orchard...

As you can see, Spring has sprung at Willowbrook Park.
The cherries and Crab apples are in full blossom

and we have started to plant up our orchard (below)

There are only 60 trees planted so far, but by the time we finish there will be about 240 trees in total, with a small reflection pond and a pavilion, all enclosed within a high hedge wall (plans below).

We are planting some more trees this weekend, but will stop at the end of September and start again next April. In the interim we will work on making the raised beds for our potager (2 acres worth) and marking that out. We have sourced most of our fruit trees from the Edible Garden.

We finally got the water test results from our well:

We can safely pump 500 gallons per hour, and although the water is high in Iron and Manganese, which can be treated, it should be fine for irrigating the Orchard and Potager, and also for driving a top-up fountain in the lake.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Angels on horseback...

Another small aside: Some photos of Rawdon and me doing our stuff. He is getting the hang of jumping slowly.

(Excuse the old Wellingtons)

When it all goes well it can be just like flying on horseback...

When it doesn't, well...

Friday, September 11, 2009

Paul Bangay...

The planting is going well at Willowbrook. We have planted 200 Leilandii, and 100 Fejoas as hedges. We have the Laurel, Yew, and Holly on order. We have also made a start on the Orchard, although many of the fruit trees are on order and will not be available till next April (which is fine because we are at the end of the ideal planting season anyway). If nothing else, gardening is teaching me patience - sigh.

I have taken a little time out to read everyone's blogs, and do a couple of posts. This post is about the Australian gardener Paul Bangay. I cam across a couple of his books in Borders. I like his timeless sense of garden design, which offers modern gardeners a contemporary approach to gardening, whilst providing numerous homages to classically satisfying designs.

You can check out his blog at: Paul Bangay's blog

I won't say too much, as Leigh at Brabourne Farm has already created a lovely post about his work.

I have three of his books at home which I can thoroughly recommend (although I have seen lots of his other books and he does seem to recycle a lot of his photos from book to book), so I would commend these ones as his best books:

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