Spring Update

The sun is shining and temperatures have finally climbed into double figures. And my Spring plant orders have started arriving. What more could a gardener ask for?!


There are lots of plants in this delivery for the new bed, yet to be prepared. But the other things that arrived yesterday went in immediately. For example, some more Echinacea and Salvia for the Oval Bed and a Veronica and white Dicentra (Lamprocapnos) for the Moon Bed. You can see the Dicentra here… tiny but very vigorous!


I never really introduced the Moon Bed, which was prepared and planted rather late last autumn. Here it is, still looking rather bare.


Cutting down the Miscanthus next to my ‘Moon’ in late winter made it look even sparser, but it will soon start taking off now it is warmer. Most of the plants I put in last year are peeping through the soil. It is so reassuring, and exciting too, to see them appear from nowhere!


The barriers around two shrubs are to deter a Mummy hare from nibbling… can you see a bundle of fur in here?


One of her babies has made a nest in some hay I put out for him. He seems to like the spot under my potting bench for daytime napping and basking in the sunshine!

The colour scheme for the Moon Bed (which is actually a half moon in shape) will be limited to blue and white, with some silvery foliage and grasses mixed in. Can’t wait to see if it works! I think it is easier to experiment when you are starting from scratch. There are some new plants in there I have never grown, including a Delphinium… not sure if it will like such an exposed position, but we will see. πŸ™ƒ

I also planted a few small herb plants in the Herb Bed yesterday: a Schizonepeta multifida (sounds a bit scary!) which is a mountain mint and looks like a dead stick still, hence no photo; a fennel plant to replace one eaten by the mice; and some Greek oregano. (Have any of you ever grown the Schizonepeta before? )


My Rosemary sadly had to be dug out of the Herb Bed as it did not survive the winter, but I now have a lovely Witch Hazel on the other corner of the Herb Bed and after ripping out dozens of wild strawberry plants (or was it thousands? πŸ˜‰) to make room for the witch hazel I planted some cheerful Saxifrage. Albeit not the herbal kind. The witch hazel is ‘Diane’ and looks extremely boring now the flowers have gone over and the leaves haven’t started to unfurl but, for my own reference at least, here it is.


Today the cold wind has made a comeback, so I am spending a relaxing afternoon recovering from a few aching limbs typical for gardeners at this time of year! πŸ˜‰

Have a great weekend everyone.

And Happy Gardening!



42 thoughts on “Spring Update

  1. It’s looking good! For me the most difficult is the planning or lack of it or changing my mind. You have got a good idea of what you want. I’ve never landscaped such a big area. It is going to be a big success like your other bed. Amelia

    • Thank you Amelia. I am far more relaxed about the garden than I used to be as any ‘mistakes’ can be corrected by simply moving stuff around! πŸ˜‰

  2. I love all your new plants: Echinacea, Salvia, Veronica, White Dicentra. Your new bed will be divine, you have great taste Cathy. I’m so glad that most of the plants from last year are sprouting again – I love it. You have a hare that since baby has been squatting in the hay that you put it when it was a baby: it is adorable to have but it eats … !!!! New plants for the Herb Bed: I do not know the Schizonepeta, sorry. Wild strawberries are a very tasty pest. A Witch Hazel “Diane” is a very special wonder, divine, I love it and more surrounded by saxifrage. Happy weekend Cathy and happy gardening. Very affectionate greetings from Margarita πŸ˜€πŸŒžπŸ˜˜πŸŒ·πŸŒΌ

    • I like that expression ‘tasty pest’ for the strawberries! πŸ˜‰ Our dogs used to love them, but we rarely pick more than a handful. Have a good week Margarita. β˜€οΈ

      • I love the taste of wild strawberries: they are small but sweet. I checked the plants that I had every day to see if they had any new strawberries to eat and I would pick them up and eat them without washing, because I do organic gardening and horticulture. Happy gardening. Have a great week. Happy Easter.

  3. Glad to hear that your temperatures have hit double figures Cathy – it’s always most exciting when that happens. I’ve never tried schizonepeta multifida let alone heard of it so off to find out more. Looking forward to hearing more about your new Moon Bed over the next few months. What is your moon made from? I know that it’s definitely not cheese πŸ˜‚

  4. You are ambitious Cathy. I find it hard to start a bed from scratch and wait for it to fill in. I’m not a very patient gardener. Looking forward to seeing your blue and white theme. It should be stunning.

    • Thanks Cindy. I am impatient too, but the satisfaction of having created something overrides that! By the way, I meant to ask you where you live… is Spring far off in your part of the world?

    • Hi Eliza. I started the garden beds in October 2018, so this was the third winter. But the trees and perimeter shrubs were put in in the spring of 2018 just before we moved here. It has been exciting creating a whole new garden and I have so many ideas, but one step at a time! πŸ˜‰

  5. Your new garden area looks great. Rabbits are so frustrating, but it sounds like you have some tricks for dealing with them. My biggest tricks are to use caging, plant more alliums and rabbit-repelling plants, and plant fewer vulnerable plants. Happy gardening!

    • Thanks Beth. I think our hares are usually only a problem in late winter when they start looking for fresh stuff to chew on. Hopefully the clover and grass will start growing now and they will be happy with that!

  6. Ah, yes. I’m familiar with the aching limbs of a gardener. It all looks beautiful, Cathy. I’m glad to see the half moon bare, so I can also enjoy the shape once it fills in with plants. It must be fun starting a new bed. Happy gardening.

  7. I am pleased to read that remperatures are picking up and am sure both you and the garden will respond apporopriately! Good to see what’s going on in your moon bed and exciting of course to have new plants arriving. Diane seems a good specimen – how tall Γ¬s she?

  8. Lots of exciting things happening there! Love the moon bed and will watch expectantly for the blue and white blends. Never heard (or grown obviously) the schizonepeta, but I am guessing it is a bit nepeta-ish and easy to grow? How lucky to share space with that baby hare! SO cute.

    • That baby hare seems quite happy to snooze under the pile of hay even when I am working nearby and in the evening it hops around the flower beds. I am so impatient to see the Moon Bed grow as there are some plants in there I haven’t grown before…. πŸ˜ƒ

  9. It’s so fun to watch your garden come to life, Cathy. Clearly spring is a big change and I love hearing about your plants arriving. I know how exciting that can be! I am fascinated with your moon bed. I am eager to watch that develop. I’m sitting here wondering how I might have the same. I love the idea as inspiration. πŸ™‚

    • The Moon Bed was lovely in winter as there is a tall grass next to the ‘moon’ which only got cut back in February. The full moon was shining on it last night and I just can’t wait to see it in early summer when it should start to take off!

  10. The moon bed sounds lovely, great colour scheme. Are you disciplined about sticking to colour schemes? Am trying to this year but I find it hard! I have never heard of the schizophrenic catmint, I wonder how it will behave! And what it looks like. I have Nepeta fassennii, not sure if it’s a relation? Does so well for me, great for drought conditions in summer. Looking forward to seeing how your garden grows.

    • Since starting this garden I have actually been fairly good about keeping to colour schemes, although I never used to understand the appeal! I have one bed where anything goes but the Sunshine Bed is only yellows, reds and orange and the new bed I am planning will also be ‘hot’ colours. I expect the mint will try and conquer the Herb Bed, but pulling up scented mint is one of the more pleasant kinds of weeding! 😜

      • I love the names you chose for your beds: moon and sunshine πŸ™‚ I do think that colour schemes can be so effective, especially at creating a mood. I’m trying to do that with a vibrant bed this year. Oh yes that mint will spread, but you can make plenty of mint tea πŸ˜‰

        • I also have a Butterfly Bed and Herb Bed and the new one to be made soon will also have a catchy name. πŸ˜‰ Makes it so easy to keep a record of what plants went where!

  11. Never heard of Schizonopeta and will check it out. It’s lovely to have hares (and your garden looks like deer country too which is less nice πŸ˜‰ ). We have an escapee domestic rabbitt which calls sometimes and goes for the really rare stuff. Looking forward to seeing your half moon bed develop and possibly a picture of the baby hare :D. Have a great week, Cathy xx

    • Hi Annette. Yes, it is deer country but we have a fence! πŸ˜‰ We got permission to fence in the property because we are planting so many trees and shrubs, so fortunately we have no deer in the garden. Apparently there are wild boar around too, but I have never seen any signs of them. Thank goodness!

      • we put one up around the Swiss garden (1.4m high) but here we just have electric fence which the deer sadly ignore…usually keeps the wild boar at bay though so I won’t complain πŸ˜€

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