The gardens at Pear Tree Cottage sit in a cider apple orchard in the green and rolling countryside of Worcestershire, England. It enjoys a sunny south westerly aspect with sweeping views across to Martley Hillside, Woodbury & Abberley clock tower. The Teme Valley lies just over the hill and, not far away, is the Herefordshire border. Although our climate is temperate, our seasons are often uncertain and always a challenge to a gardener!


28 June 2016

Excess rainfall - pros & cons!

Alchemilla mollis (alias Ladies' Mantle)
Mile a minute grass!

Hardly a day without rain and the grass is growing a mile a minute! As much as I enjoy mowing and edging, I HATE mowing wet grass! It sticks, clogs and looks such a mess. Quite the opposite of alchemilla mollis which, if anything looks better for a few (notice I said few!) raindrops. As for the roses, they've taken a bit of a beating and I'm glad not have put many Geraniums out yet. We all know how much they hate rain!

Just a common old Campanula

Making the best of some rare sunshine!

Greenhouse Way.
It may be common but how pretty is this Campanula? It's a joy to pass en route to the greenhouse. Sadly going over now but it bravely withstood several downpours of equatorial rain and obviously enjoys the warmth of the bricks behind as well as their support. I think this one is probably Poscharskyana but don't hold me to it.

25 June 2016

Less Space = More Room!

Looking from the potting bench through to the tool shed
Exterior pot storage

Who wouldn't be pleased with their very own potting shed and all the new shelving facilities in the tool shed? I'm not sure which was/is more fun. Building it or using it? The weird thing is -  less space equals more room!  The extra storage is a BIG bonus. Canopies & guttering mean less algae, fewer puddles and less standing water. As for the little oriel window with its lead roof and new views across the orchard and the garden - it's just so lovely! Thanks Chris for all your help.  It was lots of fun and it's perfect to use. More photos

Looking from the tool shed through to the potting shed

New shelving & hanging

Slug Alert!

Back on sentry duty from his favourite look out post this morning! Let's hope he's feasting on slugs!

The great escape!

A good to fly our flag!

Flood defences

Just a video of all the excavation work on drainage behind the greenhouse.

23 June 2016

Squatter in the Greenhouse

Aeonium arboreum atropurpureum Scwarzkopf

Hardly a remarkable might suppose. Just an Aeonium standing in a greenhouse. 

Mr Toad alias Bufo bufo of the family Bufonidae
Take a look at the second photo and see who our latest resident is sitting at the base of the Aeonium! He moved in about 3 weeks ago but was reluctant to pose until this evening. Now isn't that surprising when we consider the fact that the greenhouse has only been up since May. Any guesses when he hopped in? Bufo Bufo!  What a great name!!  We decided to call him Mr. Morse!

22 June 2016

Side by Side in the Greenhouse

Whilst improvements to all the potting amenities were in progress, in the quiet humidity of the greenhouse cucumbers were sneaking higher and higher up their strings and beneath their huge sand-papery leaves, cucumbers are slyly swelling. So far, I'm managing to keep the dreaded white fly at bay and we can't wait to taste them. Next to the cucumbers in another quiet corner is a single Zantedeschia bloom. It looks to perfect to be real and more like a wax sculpture. No scent whatever, you can't eat 'em but such purity! Because of all the recent rains, I have postponed putting any geraniums out cos they just hate wet weather. This explains why the staging is looking a tad over crowded! Fingers crossed for some more seasonal weather.

New Potting Shed Open for Business is a potting shed!
New, canopy, barge boards and finial
The new Potting Shed was declared open for business today. Most of the ply wood boarding has been treated with my usual mixture of 50/50 turpentine and linseed oil. Sadly, I ran out before the bottom half was finished.  A most enjoyable day was spent organising, tool shed miscellanea. The exterior of the tool shed enjoyed a bit of an upgrade thanks to Chris's eagle eyed expertise! I never really liked the lack of overhang and guttering. Chris came up with the idea of putting barge board over the tile edges and making oak finials for both apexes. The finials were made from the remainder reclaimed oak fencing and mimic our gate designs. Chris also made a smaller canopy (strategically sited to avoid any further head injuries!) with pretty brackets over the pot racks. I creosoted it today and its such a shame we can't see its amazing grain from below! (...and no - I can't paint upside down!)

Probably the world's tidiest tool shed!

20 June 2016

Bespoke Potting!

Breaking up concrete prior to digging out the trench

Tools & sawdust everywhere!
Laying drain pipes in gravel
Long shadows in a long potting shed!

How come building a new potting is quite such fun?  Well, I certainly think it's great fun - even working in the rain and putting in much needed drainage to cope with rainfall on the greenhouse roof and prevent water from overflowing and entering the potting shed is all now completed. The 'Gingerbread House' oriel window looks so quaint and having found some architrave in the barn looks even prettier on the inside!  In fact; Chris said it was his best mitred corner ever!! There were of course comments about having to move the recently completed shelf in order to accommodate prettiness before practicality!!  In my defence; it was Chris that found it and such an amazing window deserved both the extra time and the detail! Another plus is the fact that it's west facing and throws more light through the hatch and into the tool shed. Even the door has a little heart shaped window. Compact, bijou, cosy and dry - what else could a girl ask for? I can hardly wait to move in!  Potting Progress Piccies

Check out the heart shaped window!

Flood prevention!