Let'S Hear It For Plant Therapy And Wumpy House!
0 comment Wednesday, August 6, 2014 |
I was armed and ready today with �150 of the funds I received from Gardening for Disabled. It was going to prove to be a trek for me but I just promised myself I'd have a nice long bath and go to bed at 8pm tonight.
I managed to get a bus over to Wilton Garden Nursery, and even though I have been debating what to get for months, I so found myself overwhelmed. Amazing colour and fragrance and foilage everywhere...and what were the chances I'd be able to get any of it on the bus?! After selecting the rather obvious herbal pots, I made my way to a staffperson and asked if someone would be so kind to help me narrow down some choices.
Immediately an incredibly helpful chap came round and toured me all about the garden centre, asking about my requirements (good colour, good fragrance, non-poisonous). I got some really great ideas, and discovered some breathtakingly beautiful daisy-like flowers which I really can't wait to get into the garden, they're beautiful! He also introduced me to fancy-leaf geraniums. Understand I've always found geraniums to be rather boring, but these plants are so technicolour, it's unreal! And the leaves are so very soft to touch, they're just packed with sensory detail. I was also turned onto some landscape "sword grass"(?) which comes in amazing colours and yet, isn't sharp like the pampas grass Sprog has managed to get fixated upon. Passionflower, a thornless rose bush and some Japanese maple all went into the pot and was gently stirred, but as much as temptation called, I don't want to make any big final decisions on permanent placement until the final landscaping is done, so I resisted - just!
I managed to make a few more choices on plants and even was given ideas I hadn't even thought of before - hedging with rosemary and lavender is certainly a bit of a "duh" moment for me, I should have thought of it before! I think that's what I'll do in order to give sprog his "secret garden" space, and yet also add to the fragrance and herbal use of the garden. Still, gardening isn't all srs biznss: I added a splash of kitsch by getting some very technicolour plastic pinwheels, which I'll add to the rainbow coloured windsock I've also purchased as bright sensory visual detail for the garden. Yeah I know - rather hideous but get those going and our bubble machine and it's instant giggle material. And I gotta admit, the visual tickles me.
It would have been very easy (insanely easy!) to spend all the dosh I had just on plants alone, but I was also keeping in mind the practicality aspect; the grant was given to me for "active" gardening for disabled people, and one thing I'm tired of struggling with is the watering can, at least when it comes to going to the back garden! So I also invested in a really durable hose which apparently has a 10 year warranty. That would be excessive if one did not know the Sprog+Dog combination at my house - durable is good. I also invested in another set of gardening gloves for sprog so he has his very own pair once more, and I got the small growhouses for the tomato plants (and then realised when I get home that I'm not so certain a four-foot-high growhouse is going to accommodate indeterminate toms! But it will give them a good start and as weird as it may look, I can always grow them through the tops with the stakes. In addition to this, I had a look over the tools, and got his advice on the Wolf Garten line - a lot of versatility in those and they don't seem too hard to keep straight or use, even when my hands are giving me trouble. Worth remembering. I put in some plant food in the mix as I'm really just starting out on the gardening lark and neither my compost bin nor my comfrey plants have been long established, so I can't bank on the organic feeding just yet.
I quickly found however that I was rapidly reaching my limit of spending for the day, and I hadn't even picked up any soil yet! Nothing else for it, unfortunately - and then how to get it all home? Well, Helpful Gent told me that they can offer a delivery service. I never knew - hurrah! For no charge they'll bring things round for me on Monday; he was rather apologetic as we were both getting really enthusiastic about garden plants and he had been really hopeful he could get things to me this week, but nothing else for it. To be honest, I wasn't troubled; I would have never managed to get those plants anywhere else but at a garden centre, and certainly never managed to get them home. On top of that, we're looking at our last very heavy frost in the next day or two - I'd feel an idiot if I got the stuff here on Tues only to have it all die on me on Wed morning! All in all I was very chuffed when I left and I look forward to getting those plants in, and daydreamed colour all through my lunch in Wagamama. Yep, rare treat, I ate in a restaurant for lunch, but at that point I was starting to find walking difficult and I had only eaten a slice of toast for breakfast, so I needed to recharge without putting forth any further energy.
In addition to this great garden-score, I was on a mission for White Horehound online. Now, for whatever smegging reason, the stuff is difficult to find. VERY difficult. Even harder to find when I need to pay via Paypal. I grumbled a fair bit about this and then, lo and behold, Google was kind to me. I found a company called "Plants With A Purpose" - that's the bunny! It's way up in Scotland but they have a wide assortment of medicinal plants, and a great store of herbal knowledge. They even offered what they called "The Mediaeval Collection" which featured a bunch of herbs I have been looking round for but haven't been able to find; goat's rue, meadowsweet, soapwort, and so on. Bonus! I added a bergamot, some mallowroot and my very-sought-for horehound, and that order is winging its way to me as well.
I have still been foiled on the topsoil front. It was looking as if I'd have to order from somewhere well across the country for a ton of earth, and pay through the nose. But after some hunting about, I found a company in Hampshire which sells topsoil that hasn't just been dug out of a construction site or a landfill somewhere. They can do two tonnes for the cost of one anywhere else. VERY tempting offer. Unfortunately for me, I can't quite swing the cost - I'm nearly spent up as much as I dare to be if I still want to get works complete. It's sort of backwards and not very cost effective in the long run, but I'll have to grit my teeth and just go for the bagged, bog-standard B & Q stuff which I can put down �20 for. A stopgap measure but the best I can do right now; the toms need planting when the stuff arrives next week, the potatoes need hilling up, and everything honestly could use a bit of a topdress, so needs must for now.
The pinnacle of awesome has yet to be fulfilled however: Wumpy House is being ordered this week! This is not coming under the "actively gardening" bit, and therefore none of the funds are being used on it - it's Ex's gift to the garden project which I think he's secretly rather impressed with even though he and plants don't get on ("I don't touch them, they don't die - that's the agreement.") Then I'll need to get some cash together to paint it, and also paint the fence. Wumpy House will need a spider scarer too - this area is spider heaven during the fall and they get HUGE round here. I won't be having spiders in my son's playhouse - those are the Rules. We've a spare mat for the flooring so it doesn't look so naff, and maybe I can get really inspired and paint the inside as well. I'll keep the hope on that one as I really, really want him to like it - so I'll paint it however he wants. It could be bright pink with psychedelic bubble-detailing, I wouldn't care, and possibly be secretly jealous.
Then, another dig-deep-into-the-pockets for the sandbox which I have picked out, and even though the grass won't be back 100% (and I probably won't be able to work on the state of the lawn again until Sept/Oct time) it should be a relatively welcoming Wump-space to keep my son happily occupied over the summer. Raised beds and so on up that way would be a bonus. If my son is happy, playing and chattering outside, then I'm happy. It's always done my heart in to watch him just circle round and round, round and round, in the garden previously as there were no toys out there, no plants, no colour, and all sorts of dangerous stuff he wasn't allowed to play on or touch. I want this to really be full-sensory space where he doesn't have to worry about that anymore.
So, it's 8pm, and I did promise myself I would be heading to bed - especially as it's shopping tomorrow! Then the rather despised house-inspection Wed, a mental health assessment for sprog on Thursday (sounds more ominous than it is, but it's still going to be two hours long and very draining for me AND sprog), and Friday I'll more than likely need to head on another trek for potting soil.
Yeah, I know, doesn't exactly look like this whole rest-and-heal thing I was going on about does it? Pressure is mostly off next week, so all in good time.
Sun's still up, but goodnight anyway!

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