As with any of our gardens, we like to view see it looking well. For me, it's been a journey of garden recovery since the storms and gales over the Winter, getting around to rebuild or repair projects as time allows, and there is still more to do. This in turn means that any of the additional plans I had for the garden are delayed with my calendar pretty full for the coming months at least, and if I'm honest, some of the projects will have to be deferred until the Autumn time. I am continuing with seasonal vegetable planting and production gardening, because if you miss the window on these, that's that for another year.
First steps were of course digging and getting the soil as right as possible. I have learned from putting in previous beds that there is about 4-6 inches of good topsoil. Go any deeper and you begin to hit substandard material that just won't sustain good health plant growth. So with this in mind, I dug through the bed, removing any perennial weeds, and then added a fine mix of well rotted manure, home-made compost and shop-bought compost. I enriched the soil with fish, blood & bone meal, and again dug over the bed, threaded over it and left it ready for planting.
There were some errands to run and this gave me a nice break and time to contemplate the next steps. Now in planning any bed in the garden, I always like to think beyond just planting random colour, which of course can look well, but with a little more thought, you can achieve even greater sense of satisfaction. For this bed, I had some russet rocks I had been intending to use. Many moons ago I also had consulted with OH, and we were of the mind to ensure lavender plants were added in to the garden. So putting these aspects together, and blending other colours to fit around this, I decide the theme of the bed would be primarily blue to mauves, with the russet rocks providing the contrast that you mostly see yellow or orange flowering plants providing.
I gathered the plants, which apart from the recently purchased lavenders (Lavandula) , comprised of a rag-tag group which had been knocking around waiting for the opportunity to shine. I pulled the rocks together too, again they were stored to one side as I knew I'd put them to good use.
Once I was happy about the placement of the plants and the rocks, there was nothing else to do but plant and water them in well. You can see with two plants I did something slightly different. Firstly with the Dierama, I planted it in a raised soil area, using the rocks. The reason for this is that this particular plant likes very well drained soil and I would fear for its survival just planting it into the raised bed.
Instead, I've put it into this nice pot, which is decorative and fits nicely with the other colours in the bed (this pot was a lovely present from some night class gardening students a few years back - again, thank you!). To control the Vinca, I will regularly prune it back, particularly those lovely stems reaching over the side of the pot.