As a fully paid-up member of the ‘do as I say and not as I do’ brigade*, heeding my own advice is about as natural as the sweet heady scent of freshly mown astro turf. However, miracles can happen - even in twenty-first century Norfolk.
In all honesty, I would rather spend my garden budget on something exquisite which pleases as many of my senses as is physically possible, so anything humdrum and sensible, like rabbit fencing, is way down my list of desirable purchases. Or it was. I have been preaching to clients about correctly installed rabbit protection for years and I have finally heard my own message.
Of course, lists of rabbit-resistant plants are readily available, but Br'er, Peter, Roger and Buggs haven’t read any of them and will invariably munch their way through specimens which are, according to the experts, off the menu.
I love to grow my own food and if I eat the food, the chances are that the rabbits will too and I know who is more bright-eyed and bushy-tailed in the morning and will get to the crops first. So a considerable proportion of my garden budget will be blown on rabbit fencing which will, hopefully, keep the bunnies out. I like to think it will be a fine long-term investment for my plants and my sanity. After all, little is more disheartening than discovering that your garden is now the eatery of choice for the entire cast of Watership Down.
The photos above are of my auntie's travelling Geum. I took some from her Cambridgeshire garden, planted it in Essex, then moved a little of it with me to Norfolk. It's a spreader, so it travels within the garden too, although not in a pesky way - just enough to enable us to share it with others. It is Geum rivale. I think it is beautiful and even better, bees love it.
Our barn conversion continues apace. Tonnes of soil have been removed and the barn is still standing despite howling gales and hailstorms.
We have had many heaps of soil bigger than the one below (although this one is unusual in that it is basking in the sunlight). We have managed to reuse them all, so nothing has been disposed of off-site.
The dog enjoying his morning constitutional is Sprout. I can't believe how clean he looks in that photo!
This week it is Chelsea Flower Show, so my camera battery is recharging and I am getting all excited about catching up with old friends and meeting new plants. I can't wait!
* Please see the 'Chocolate and Cherries' post March 2012