greentapestry : A Backwards Glance

Wednesday 31 December 2008

A Backwards Glance

The last blog entry of 2008. Here the year is ending on a very cold and foggy note. Himself suggested treating me to lunch an offer that I could not decline. A Chinese restaurant in Liverpool our destination. We went in on the train - the nearer we got to town the noticeably whiter and whiter it became. At first I thought it was simply a much harder frost than we experienced, then it dawned on me that there was quite a bit of snow on the ground yet we had not seen as much as a single flake.

Looking back it has been another memorable year as far as the weather goes. Surely after the rainy summer of 2007 we were due for a better summer. Would you believe it ? A mild winter was followed by a cool spring but then by yet another incredibly wet summer. September was mellow but it seemed too little and too late. I wonder what 2009 will bring.

Garden successes seem hard to recall but the low of the year comes straight to mind - failing the allotment inspection in July. The allotment went to the bottom of my priority list as it got nearer to me finishing work at the end of July. That combined with the fact that we were away for a fortnight in June as well as week in July resulted in allotment chaos. Plants that I hoped to get in the ground did not get in until after the inspection, the weeds flourished and other lottie jobs were neglected. So I spent most of my first few weeks of 'retirement' toiling at the lottie throughout a cool, dreary and damp August. Quite often I was the only soul there shivering under damp and leaden skies. The hard work paid off though as I passed the next inspection and was spared what would have been the heartbreak of losing my plot.

Plans for 2009 will be drawn up in January. The seed catalogues and a notepad are ready and this year I will be sticking to a definite plan I hope. I would dearly like the allotment to become a lot more productive and want to get my head round successional sowing and harvesting. Himself's Christmas gift to me is another four raised beds which is he in the process of constructing so I will have more space to fill.

We managed to fit in a few garden visits during the summer including a couple that I will post about soon. We also got to the Southport Flower Show again and to the Malvern Autumn Show which we had not visited before. I always enjoy Malvern in the spring but had never been to the autumn show. This show did not disappoint in its content and was blessed with some glorious autumnal weather.

Finally my blog has fared much better this year - more posts than in previous years and I hope to continue this into the new year. Hopefully, it will not be another three months or six months down the line before I return! Maybe after spending less time at a computer word processing voluminous notes because I had to, I am now just enjoying writing for the pure enjoyment of it. Time now to sign off here though for the time being and find the corkscrew!

PS The above photo is a fairly new planting combination in the garden which gave me pleasure this year.


  1. Happy New Year Anna.
    I like your photo - it is a lovely plant combination - is that a painted fern?
    Hope you are quite recovered now?
    With all good wishes for 2009

  2. Happy New Year Anna!

    For once that amber Heuchera looks just right. They usually look awful, so well done you.

  3. L-i-v-e-l-p-double-o-l Liverpool FC! (Sorry. I have to go through that any time I read the word "Liverpool." It's aa rare disease for an American, I can tell you!) Lunch sounds fun! I love the photo of the heuchera, fern, and that one plant whose name I always forget. I have a similar planting in my garden! Allotment inspection? You mean they check you're using it "right"???
    ~ Monica

  4. Hello Karen - good to see you here. Thank you for your remarks about the combination. It is indeed a painted fern but I can't remember which one. I love them although always worry whether they have made it through the winter.

    Thanks VP - the amber heucheras can look quite horribly bilious when they have company :)

    Monica - I forgive you - I have lived with a fervent Liverpool FC supporter for almost 25 years :) Yes the allotments are inspected on a regular basis by the local council - in our case three times a year. The inspections are to ensure that tenants are cultivating the land and using it appropriately - there are long waiting lists for allotments. Sadly some folk do little growing and use them as a dumping ground for all sorts of junk.


All your comments are much appreciated and treasured. I wil try to reply to everyone who leaves a comment, but it may take me a few days, especially when I start spending more time in the garden and at the lottie. I know that you will understand :) I am sure that I will also visit your blog if I have not already done so. If you have any specific questions I will either reply to them here or you can email me at :


- Anna.