The road to a more decent-looking backyard has only just begun even though a lot of the things that needed doing are completed. Since my last blog post on this little project, Tony’s put on some quality top soil on the garden patch as the ceathonus had been sucking up lots of the good stuff. I’d like to add that my next door neighbour has become an ad hoc project manager for this little venture – her garden’s all done and she’s excited about this blank slate, but of course, all things proceeding after consultation.

I know have a few new plants bought from a nursery somewhere near Bawtry (I think), and I kinda left this to the project manager after deciding that I wanted an easy-to-manage garden. We also discussed about making the garden a lil’ Japanese-y[1]. Here’s what I have now:

Japanese maple (紅葉 – momiji)

Otherwise known as acers (Acer palmatum) which are native to Japan, Korea and China, these guys if left untended may well grow into a small tree. I do intend to let it grow as a tree, but a smaller one as opposed to a small one. Hah.

Phyllostachys bissetii

Or bamboo for short. The phyllostachys is a genus of bamboo, originating from central China. Grows up to 7 metres. Need to keep an eye on this fella! Wiki tells me that phyllostachys means ‘leaf spike’. Bigger versions are used to make furniture. Not sure if pandas eat these ones or not.

A geranium (and some plant I can’t remember)

The geranium is on the left. It is a Rozanne®. Yup, with an ® to it. Also known as a Hardy Geranium which blooms all summer. They are perennial and live for many years. They die in the autumn only to grow bigger the next spring. I like ’em easy. And yeah, I totally forgot what this other plant is but I am sure it’s a creeper of sorts.

Euonymus and hosta

Also known as the spindle tree or winter creeper, this dinosaur-sounding plant is of the fortunei variety. It is an evergreen shrub that flowers mid-summer. This plant is also named after Euonyme, the mother of the Furies in Greek mythology, whilst the fortunei is after Robert Fortune, a 19th century Scottish horticulturist. The hosta is the one on the right and is planted in the section of the garden where it is wettest (thanks to the gutter running down from my garage). Also another perennial plant, this hosta is of the Francee variety. Its leaves are heart-shaped and they bloom in August.

Climbing rose

I have no idea what colour or what variety this is. Will keep you updated when it blooms.

On the same day the plants came, Tony completed the seating area which was made of decking, with some extra decking to spare. Later on, I’d like to make a border of garden pebbles lining the edge of the garden where the seating area is. Prolly not a total zen rock garden, but I’d like to get an old-looking pagoda lamp which would look great under the Japanese maple.

And last weekend, I got the garden some cheapo solar-powered lights which costs 80p each. It only works well if the sun is shining really bright in the day. Even then, the lights die out by 10 or 11PM the latest. It does look good when they switch on automatically once the sun sets.

Last Sunday was also pretty sunny. As the decking was somewhat dry, I stained it with some Ronseal (medium oak stain I think it was). Prior to staining, I cleaned the decking by, umm… hoovering it. Worked splendidly. After one and a half hours, I was well chuffed with the results.

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Can’t wait to chill with some mates over some BBQ as the whole backyard feels much more pleasant now. On a dry day, I could just hoover the decking and place a rug on it, add a few cushions, bring out a floor lamp, and just chill with some mates whilst scoffing on triple quarter pounders.

[1]Hence, the nezā-ēji-koēn hashtag going around on Instagram of late.