Friday, 8 February 2013

I need a holiday already!

I'm not going to moan, just briefly recap. Celia has had a knee replacement and needs weekly hospital visits. Amanda has broken her arm and has needed help with most things that need two arms....and weekly hospital visits. I have the sore throat from hell and a torn muscle and damaged nerve in my shoulder.....and had a doctors visit. There has been a lot of gardening to do, the news that our new accountant now wants everything up to date and ready by March (I was thinking September), and it's flaming cold, wet, and in this picture dropping sleet.
I wasn't at my peak of condition as you can tell. The spring in my step has sprung, and I'm not sure quite what has happened to the skin on my face, perhaps I need some of this stuff.
Although the weather has been pretty cold, there was one sunny day this week, and I quite enjoyed going  around and freshening up the soil that had become quite panned down with all of the adverse weather. The two new apple trees appear to be doing ok so far. The older apple trees will get pruned next year. As with all fruit trees last year, they didn't produce very well because of the lack of sunlight throughout, but one has to remain optimistic that this year will be better.

Although I keep good records of work income, expenditure etc, in the past I have usually had one mad rush to correlate it all in September so that the accountant can do the necessaries. The accountants that we have used since starting up, very wisely retired last year, and we have a new and younger model. Through sore throat and muggy head, I have been introduced to the world of how it is going to be. Interactive spreadsheets that I am not used to, daily entries and so on. All as it should be, just so long as the paperwork doesn't become a job in itself. Needless to say, his personal accounting was very impressive indeed, but then, accountants and numbers eh? I was just left feeling confused, and with a sore throat.

Winter mornings like these are so very nice to be outside in. I see others heading off to their various inside jobs and count my blessings that although things are a little rough at the moment, I can not only take pleasure in my work surroundings, but if I so desire, simply head to the beach for a walk or such like. Being a self employed gardener doesn't bring great wealth, but it does bring freedom of choice to a great degree.

I spotted this Sarcococca hookeriana tucked away and almost forgotten in one of the shrub borders. One of the Buxus family, for most of the year it looks very boring, and as a result isn't one of my favourites, but this little fellow pulled me in enough to think 'wow', admire it, and even take this photo.

Another task has been to prepare this area for a little change. For some reason the previous gardener had decided to try and be all modern and abstract, and cut this triangular bed, off centre to a very semi-circular lawn, and flank it unevenly with two different sized tree beds. We have been looking after this large place for about eight years now, and finally reached this spot as the latest update thank goodness.
The new bed will be a circle of about five feet diameter, with the centre being in the middle of the right hand straight, if that makes sense. This shows you just how fay off from centre the existing bed is. The two trees are to go, the circles moved to line up with everything, and two Acer 'Senkaki' to finish. Not everything should be quite so centred I know, but in this instance, and when viewed from a distance, it makes sense believe me.

With Amanda off for two months, I am going to need some help now and again, and my son-in-law Dom answered my phone call that morning with a 'sure, I will be there in about fifteen minutes'. This guy can put his hand to pretty much anything, and makes short work of the grass cutting here, which believe me is no small task. It was icy cold and windy this time, but his lines are nice and straight!

The front lawn all finished for today, and the back areas still being worked on.

Today is Friday, two places on Sandbanks to do this morning, then trips to the hospital this afternoon. Although most computer time'has been spent on accounts, I have been busy planning a few little 'pick me ups', but that's for a little later.
Take care all of you, and stay fit!


  1. Hello Gary:
    Gosh, we are full of admiration for you that you are at least managing to keep going in spite of all the setbacks. And, the awful weather is certainly not a help.

    We are sorry about Amanda's broken arm. That must be so painful and debilitating. Surely, things can only get better?

    Still, the garden you show looks in good shape for this time of year. We love Sarcococca. Its delicious scent makes it a star for the winter months in our view!

  2. Gary
    This time of year does not help either does it.....? It often feels as though you are walking in deep wet sand.
    Chin up
    At least you are not like me
    I fart all of the time when I bend over

  3. Oh my gosh Gary, you, Amanda and Celia are in my prayers. What a lot on your plate right now. I'm glad your S-I-L was able to give you a hand with your work. May things get better for all of you soon.

    FlowerLady Lorraine

  4. You need a hot toddy, my friend.
    Are those photos of a residence or commercial garden? It's huge!

  5. You look good. Life, like history is one damn thing after another.
    I know little about plants....I do know green side up and love the images of your work.
    I hope all your families infirmities are soon a thing of the past.

  6. Gary, I hope do hope sunshine finds you soon. Sometimes life is gloomy but it is always worth the trouble.

  7. Hopefully, this is the worst of it and your load lightens soon. Really hope your ladies get better quick and the weather improves. As for the accountant...change is never fun. May it be easier after you've gotten everything set up with him.
    The gardens sure look healthy under your care. Be well!!

  8. Gary,
    I am so sorry to hear about A’s arm, I truly hope she is recovering well and soon will be back in top form and I also hope that you a well on your way to recovery. Torn muscles and nerves should not be taken lightly and it is good to hear you have backup help. Hmm, so you just rang up your son-in-law and he said sure? Hmm, Can I get his number? (lol).

    I am in full agreement with your plans for correcting the previous gardeners’ layout. It looks as though they may have measured but did not sight and correct for the lay of the lawn, just my obsessive / compulsiveness.

    Hope the weather soon turns for the best and you guys are well on your way to full recoveries and up to full steam shortly, take care. – gary

  9. You're in one of those 'one darn thing after another' phases that come along every now and then to floor us. The consolation is that it will pass and then just normal will seem glorious! (Meanwhile take care and spoil yourself, and Amanda, a little!)

  10. Yes, such is life. You don't looks so bad, I can relate with torn this or that, had a few years of tearing-pulling-straining every muscle/ligament/joint that I had. Make sure with all those hospital and doc visits to wash your hands like crazy when you leave there( and Amanda). Those places are germ havens. Your son-in-law looks big and strong, so you guys can make good time now on the sites.Chin up, things will get better...before you know it , you will be off somewhere romantic w/ Amanda.