End of Month Review - December 2012

So 2012 has finished its turn and the end is truly in sight for it.  The minutes are ticking away inexorably to the tolling of the bell that means a year ends and a new one begins.

December 2012, how shall you be remembered?  What is that word I am thinking of, that simple small word that sums you up pretty neatly, oh I know: wet.  December 2012 has been wet.
So, firstly the front garden is still looking good.  Some small weeds and nigella seedlings are starting to come up in the gravel and some bulbs.  I shall get them weeded out (not the bulbs) over the next few days.
The magnolia is covered in buds.  It looks like next year will be a good year for flowers.
Just under the Magnolia shelters this Rhamnus, bought many years ago from Hidcote.  It spent its early years in a pot and is now thriving.  The eagle-eyed amongst you may notice the green string tying it to the tree, it toppled a bit so needed some extra support.
Still in the front garden the Rosa Ballerina is still trying to flower, but bravest of all is.....
This gazania, not quite dead yet and not quite given up on the hope that it might flower.  Who knows, it may succeed.

Into the back garden now.
In the rain-sodden veg patch a few scraggy looking leeks are trying to  keep going.
The green manure is patchy, I think I sowed it too late, but it is there and will be dug in at some point.
I took this photograph to show the Tea Tree, this is about four years old now and is thriving.  It gets overlooked a bit but it keeps going and is very pretty when it flowers.  It is one of the few evergreens allowed in the garden that is not holly or a camellia.
I also noticed the cardoon, about five years old and grown from seed.  This time of year it is a mix of the seed heads and the new growth, a transitional piece you might say.
The courtyard now contains the Olive Tree of happiness that I won a few weeks ago.  It doing wonderfully and I am so glad that it has added to the ever-improving courtyard.  (it is a courtyard, not a scrappy bit of no-mans land).
I then decided to do some over-view shots from each corner of the garden.  The above is from the conservatory border.
This is from the veg-bed corner.  Not a view I often show, amazingly the Rosa Hyde Hall hedge that divides the veg garden from the rest of the garden is almost invisible, but I think next year it will come into its own.
This is from the top right hand corner, it makes the garden look quite big, its not really, the house is small (not far away).
and from the top left hand corner, over the prairie borders and back towards the pond.
The patch of teasels is still looking good.  I am now looking forward to editing the many many seedlings that will appear.
The woodland border is largely covered in leaves from the adjoining poplar trees.  Shining through them is a self-sown hellebore, it is about two years old now and I am just waiting for the great day when it flowers and I find out what it looks like.
I did some pleaching adjustment the other day.  I moved the bars up higher.  The top level is new, the bottom level has gone and the middle level remains.  It is a very long term project.
What how now (as of today) become know as The Long Shoot is looking good.  I have straightened the edges a bit (no really) and I am toying with narrowing the grass runway a bit further.  Not too much though I think it needs some width.  The lawn at the end is good, except I keep looking at it and wondering, wondering, could I carve out a border into the middle of it making it a sort of island, a sort of island border that Percy Thrower would be proud of....... no, no, move away from this notion at once!
The Spring border is not looking very ready for Spring yet, but it will be, I have faith.
The first hellebore is in flower.  That caused a little whoop I can tell you.
The hamamellis are starting to unfurl their spidery flowers.  I love them so much, great plants for great colour.
The prairie borders are looking remarkably good considering all the wind and rain.
The winter flowering clematis on the eating apple tree is doing very well.
The pond border is a bit sparse, and has spent some time rather puddled of late as well.  I have never seen standing water in the garden before (except the pond), it has been incredibly wet of late.
Yes, really wet.
So is it any surprise to say the pond is full?  I would be very worried if it was not!  I did spent some time the other day clearing out fallen leaves and more of the dratted parrot week.  It looks a lot clearer though there is still work to be done.

So that is December, wet.  Thanks as ever to Helen for hosting this meme.

I wish everyone a happy new year.  I hope 2013 brings you want you wish for and some good things that you could not have imagined.


  1. I spotted my first Hellebore yesterday, also whooped.
    Your garden always looks large to me and there is so much variety. The prarie border looks like it is coming together despite being early days. I think grasses take longer to establish than we realise.
    It is nice to see the pond full this year although the reason why is annoying.
    Lets hope that next year brings us some more manageable weather.
    Thanks for joining in this year

  2. There is a lot going on in your garden for December! Pleaching is a new word for me (although I am English)and I had to look it up. I find it means 'to entwine or interlace (tree branches) to form a hedge or provide cover for an outdoor walkway.' All your readers knew that I'm sure. Now pleaching is on my list of must-do's for 2013.Happy New Year (with better weather)! P. x

    1. Pleach is one of my favourite words, most of the fun of pleaching is be able to say you are doing it.

      Happy new year.

  3. I'm absolutely in love with your garden! Fantastic post and I'm so glad I found your blog this year. Really looking forward to following your garden in 2013 :) Best wishes to you!!
    Anna B

  4. The entire year was wet, December just followed the existing trend :) Glad to see updates on your garden Alison, and wishing you all the best for 2013! Happy New Year!

  5. Wet indeed. I was given some new hellebores for Christmas, but I haven't braved the elements to put them into the ground yet.

  6. Thanks for all the lovely comments - happy new year all. xx


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