Thursday, 7 February 2013

Prime location

Now we are all told all the time that location is everything.  Are we living in the right street, in the right town?  Are we near to the right schools?  Most important of all though:  right plant, right place.
Some plants are easy to site.  You read up on what they like/dislike:  full sun, frost tender, keep out of strong winds; and we pick the place as close to that description in our gardens to pop them in.  Of course there is also the right soil to consider and all that malarkey but generally if you follow what it says on the label or best of all what the nursery-owner has told you, you can't go wrong.

Well of course you can go wrong and sometimes almost deliberately go wrong.  Sometimes how I define light shade is apparently a plants definition of pitch black.  We differ in our opinions and sometimes it becomes a battle of wills to see who will give up first.  Well of course I back down first, I don't want my plants not to thrive or even worse, die.  Though I will confess for some bizarre reason it took me quite a long time to realise that if I had planted something in the wrong place I could just dig it up and move it.  Plants have been a lot happier since I worked out that if they did not like it there, I would try them here.  This was supported by the notion that if they still did not like it there the worst that could happen is that they would still die and then I might have to go and buy another plant.

Anyway, this is not a lesson in planting things in the right conditions, you can all read books and labels and work that out for yourselves I am sure.  No, this is a different sort of location I want to describe.
Some time ago I was watching one of the many gardening programmes that I watch.  I might watch too many as I am not sure which programme it was or who was actually presenting that particular bit, but the key message was that scented plants are good in front gardens so that you walk through them to reach the front door and that in the back garden scented plants are good around doorways and place you sit so you can enjoy the scent.  Simples as an irritating puppet might say.

So, because I am suggestible, the path in the front garden is lined with lavender and there are roses around the front door.  In the back garden there roses near the tea-break seat and the conservatory wine-bench (is it wrong to label seats by what you drink whilst sitting on them?)
In the top left corner is the Portmeirion bench and by that I have the winter honeysuckle.  This time of year this shrub becomes one of my favourites.  The sweet scent is just divine.  As I wander up the garden it wafts its scent towards me and as I sit on the bench I can just sit back and inhale (this is usually a post-lawn mow mug of tea bench).  In terms of location I think that this is one of my best located plants.  Every time I walk past it I confirm this to myself and smugly think to myself how good it is when a plan comes together.

8 comments :

  1. Location, location, location! It makes a huge a difference even if the differences in areas seem subtle!

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  2. I think finding the 'definition' of shade etc quite random. I've got both an oregano and mint that is supposed to be in at least part shade, but thrives in total shade of a north-facing garden. Same with a Thalictrum delavayi. Yet I know I've planted other things in the past that were meant to like full shade, and didn't. Sometimes I think plants make the decisions themselves!

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  3. I love when I get a sniff of a wonderfully fragrant plant in the garden. It's such an unexpected, but delightful surprise, no matter how many times I walk by. Putting your bench by a fragrant bush is perfect!

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  4. Replies
    1. Not yet, it's sitting in the greenhouse waiting for this frosty snap to finish

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  5. I can remember the TV programme telling us to do scented front gardens. Personally though, I prefer strongly scented plants in areas of the garden I might not bother with in winter - one whiff of fragrance and I'll follow it. I also plant scented plants near septic tanks (for obvious reasons).

    I absolutely adore winter honeysuckle and I am envious of both your conservatory and its wine bench.

    Have a great weekend! I am planning a bench-labelling exercise.... Baileys Bench... Fizzy Footstool... Red Wine Recliner... Drambuie Day Bed... Cava Carver....

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  6. That made me smile. We have several "tea break" benches in our garden. And a hen watching bench, a greenhouse chair (mostly for the cat- to stop her sitting on the seedlings)and a pond perching log for peering at the tadpoles and newts. It's a wonder we ever get any work done!

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  7. Does this mean you can't drink wine sat on the tea-break seat?! I am feeling a little miffed about the whole scented plants thing, I was all set to plant winter honeysuckle near the compost bins, and something fragrant near the kitchen garden, but then realised that despite the viburnum I inherited being apparently packed with scent, I never get so much as a whiff, thanks to my continually stuffed up nose. So now it seems like a waste of time. But I am glad you enjoy your scented plants. Someone should...

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