Monday, 1 August 2011

Planting and pond work

There I was thinking I'd have a relatively gentle day planting out the big side bed whilst LP finished excavating the pond. Stupid Hobbit .... he arrived ridiculously cheery at 9.00am, announced "I've been thinking about this pond" and proceeded to demonstrate that the ground sloped far more than I had realised and tell me what he could do to fix it.

I'd only been out of bed half an hour having made the very silly mistake of turning off the alarm at 6.45 and not getting up immediately. Still on my first coffee and the brain was barely installed, let alone functioning, therefore my capacity for understanding how he was going to "cut this bit down, build this bit up" and goodness knows what else was severely limited.

I've finally got the measure of how to deal with a keen and conscientious worker - just say "yes, thank you, that is a great idea" and leave him to get on with it.

Unfortunately some these great ideas required rather more input from me than I'd bargained for. I ended up spending much of the day sieving excavated spoil through The Sherpa. We now have 12 bags of beautifully sieved poor quality soil which will be perfect to put back into the pond when it is lined and meant that very little waste had to be barrowed away. 12 bags is far more than the pond needs but there's no shortage of places in this garden where we can use the rest.

Before someone asks, the hole is 8 foot across, 2 feet wide on the edges, 4 feet in the middle and currently more than 2 feet deep. By the time I have added sand and pond liner we should finish with a 24" depth in the middle. The planting area behind the pond is a couple of feet also. There is still some tweaking to do but we're getting close to done.

Determined to get the hole finished by the end of the day we finally packed up at 6.00pm. Thoroughly tired and the only planting I had managed was little corner under the Buddleja which now looks rather good with ferns, some Honesty (might be too shady for it), a few lumps of tree stump and a dressing of home-made leaf mould.


  1. That looks the busness! I'm looking forward to seeing the pond full and planted up. (Impatient beggar aren't I?)

  2. not as impatient as me VH, it is taking all my restraint not to start putting sand in ready for the liner but I know I've got to finish sculpting the soil a bit first.

  3. Tired you may well be but what a lovely lot to get done in one day - better than spreading it out over three or four days.

  4. Can you clone that man and send him over here??

  5. Hi. I've just wandered into here from ..erm...were on earth was I?!....Well anyway! I've thoroughly enjoyed reading your posts - and am VERY envious of your red squirrel as we've got lots of grey ones in our garden - sweet, but not as good as a red!

    I love your black arbour/seat thingy - it'd fit in really well in my Japanese garden :)

    I'm not suprised everything takes longer than you think it will - my 6 week summer holiday project that I begun 4 years ago still isn't quite completed! ..or maybe that's just us?!

    Great blog anyway :)

  6. Just think of what we went through for our pond which is over five feet deep. I was in the bottom (no water!) straightening the liner and was invisible (being only just a little more than 5' tall) to our next door neighbour who was having a sneaky look at what we were doing.

  7. Progress indeed - I am looking forward to seeing the finished thing (tomorrow?). We had another visit from Ferdy frog yesterday, so it looks like he and Tommy toad have both taken up residence. We'll be able to compare pond life soon!!

  8. Pat, I need three or four days to recover!

    FFG, lots more for LP to do here before we let him go gallivanting around the world {ha ha ha}

    Hello Nutty, thanks for dropping by and being kind enough to say hello. Have had a quick look at your own lovely patch, some similarities here (and please can I join the Brown Earth Society, I reckon I qualify!)

    Sue, I take it your pond is for koi and you didn't dig it out by hand? that's frighteningly deep - I'd only just be able to peep over the edge. Know what you mean about nosey neighbours . . . sigh.

    Country Bumpkin. Tomorrow? I don't know what you are drinking but you really ought to water it down more. No frogs here but loads of toads.

  9. PS: sorry Nutty, grey squirrel are never sweet. Ever, under any circumstances. Bloody tree rats.

  10. It has some koi in but isn't a koi pond and yes it was all dug by hand but we were in out 20s at the time. We have cheated a little in that there is a foot high wall to add to the depth downwards. The neighbour was nosy but nice with it and we had a laugh when he realised I was in the 'pond'.

  11. Sue, I dug the pond at our previous house by hand, and ended up with a stress fracture in my wrist as a result. Not going to do that again - and I was much younger so not sure I could do it now! thank goodness for LP.

  12. Your garden is looking lovely and the pond will make it a stunner! Hope you get lots of frogs visiting! Like your polytunnel too.

  13. Thank you Mrs Bok, at the moment the only thing in the 'pond' is rain ...


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