Monday 12 August
- Volunteer gardening with DGNS. Visited 5 gardens in total and it was a range of jobs from weeding to strimming before the last visit which was continuing the work to dig out all the brambles from a heavily over-grown garden.
Tuesday 13 August
- Today was waste disposal day today so the various bags were gathered and taken for disposal at a commercial facility before the rest of the trades arrive. There is a minimum charge of £50 for the first 500kg – my load was only 80kg! Oh well at least it is being done the right way.
- Next it was back to Didcot to trim a small hedge, dig out some lilies and brambles before giving a shrub a bit of a shaping prune.
Wednesday 14 August
- Only a couple of jobs today however I had to literally rain check the first one as it was tipping it down. This was a pity as the client was ready and waiting and disappointed with the weather but I will be back next week and will see if we can catch up on missed work.
- The afternoon wasn’t as wet so I was installing some lawn edging and then digging over resulting border before spreading some compost as a mulch. This is part of an on-going project to deal with the remains of an old (semi-filled in) concrete/stone pond and make the area look and work much better for the client.
Thursday 15 August
- First stop of the day was to measure a garden in Didcot. I had been remiss in getting this done however late summer and early autumn are really the best times to be making the bigger changes to a garden. So a bit of measuring was done and I already discussed a few ideas with the (patient) client so now I can get those thoughts and measurements into something tangible to present.
- Met a really lovely potential client in Abingdon to discuss the garden of a house they were letting to new tenants. The tenants have never really had a garden before so are a bit nervous about the responsibility. We discussed how the garden can be brought back into shape again (previous tenants not so hot on gardening and it is overrun with ivy) as well as making it a bit easier to maintain going forwards and I hope I get the opportunity as the client and garden and really nice.
- Off to the allotment to cut big bunches of herbs (sage and bay) to take over to a wonderful florist friend who needed them for an upcoming wedding and stopped for a short while to enjoy a nice chat.
- Next it was over to prune a very large (6m high?, 15m long?) mixed conifer hedge which involved both the ladders (groan) and the long reach hedge trimmer (heavy!).
- Finally, removing a various random plants and tufts of grass before digging over a long narrow bed for a property on Great Western Park (Didcot). Go more than a few inches down and the soil is really, not great.
Friday 16 August
- This is a weekly visit to a lovely garden with a terrace which makes for a lot of plants and so plenty to do. Today it was finishing taking some height off a Lonicera nitada but trying to put a slope into the top so when it is viewed from the lower ground you can see the lack of greenery on top. Next pruning another large shrub and then a bit more tidying up of some Forsythia. With the client we looked at some brown patches developing on their large Leylandii hedge which is going to need some further investigation.
- Another weekly visit followed and this time it was strimming and tidying up access to a couple of field gates from the road. Oh and picking up various bits of litter in the verge where I was working before finishing off pruning some Cherry Laurel shrubs.
- The last visit of the day was also a regular job but as the rain was getting steadier I stayed long enough to sort out a new edge for a border. Then is what carrying on the process of removing various bits of ivy and sycamore seedlings before tidying up the patio of fallen apples. Finally I spent a few minutes chatting with the client before popping some sweet peas into a small vase to brighten up their kitchen.