My first blog about the cottage garden was posted in February 2012 and now I am introducing you to the garden we have created behind our “new house”, built in 2012, on the headland to the north of the original cottage. The cottage garden and the adjacent vegetable garden with polytunnel, fruit cages and orchard has always been the focus of my gardening attention, and although I am still maintaining the vegetable garden I will be spending more time in the new garden. Again the term “new” is a misnomer, as we began work on developing this garden in February 2014. Over the years I have written about some parts of the development of this garden and featured some of the plants grown in the alpine house. The Birthday Project blog shows the first stages of the creation of the garden and the Gardens in-between features the in-between garden in one of its early incarnations.
In the intervening years we have laid the foundations of the rock garden, built the lean-to-garden, constructed the shade bed, added the small shed and started work in the new project garden. We have just finished work on what I hope will be the final version of in-between garden and the initial phase of the new project garden is almost complete. As this has involved rather more building work and landscape construction than gardening, it has not featured prominently in my writing. It has not been all manual labour as we have been growing large numbers of bulbs and alpine plants from seed for our new garden.
The plan is not to scale, but it will give you some idea of how the garden is arranged. It is on the east side of the house and on an almost exact north to south axis. There is no shelter from the wind, and the bedrock of Lewisian gneiss (a form of granite) is only just below the surface, and in some areas is exposed. I learnt a great deal about how to grow plants under difficult conditions from developing the cottage garden, but this site is much more difficult. However, for a true Polyanna, there are always compensations, the views are stunning!