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Scrubber's Journal

Scrubber's Journal September 2014

Last Post 1242 days 6 hours ago

Boring? well sometimes it has to be!

28 September 2014 20:48:33

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Take today for example (Sat). Scrubber got two things done in the garden. Yes two and neither of them was shifting a rock or shaping a bend or trimming  a branch. The first was a good watering of all the garden and that took ages. Then He dug up the final veg bed, dividing it into three and grubbing up heaps of scutch in the process. And that was it. And that took all day!

Sometimes gardening is like that and then it rained a bit last night! However its like the weighing scales. There comes a time when all the things you do, even the boring bits, add up and you see that you were heading in the right direction after all. I hope itll be like that when and if we get to heaven!

Someone came in today and looked around and said 'Lord, you have done an amount' Now scrubber is not a Lord of course, lest you get the wrong idea but it is always nice to get the compliment. So only two things done but two AND two make four and so theres hope for me yet as Sr. Josephine was wont to say 'But not in the discernible future!)

Nearly two weeks on!

26 September 2014 23:49:35

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Hard to believe it is almost two weeks since Scrubber ‘did his back in!’ But thankfully all is fine again and a week after he was able to get out and about..’ Lawns are mown and the ‘cantakerous’ hazel has been brought back to more modest proportions. Might paint the trimmings white and sprinkle them with gold dust for Christmas glitter! He cleared out the rose bed fairly well-the weeds not the roses and a small rock that was near the steps rolled down to the new bed beside the path and fitted in perfectly. Cherub I think as Scrubber wasn’t even looking in that direction!

He had been on the lookout for an owl ever since cherub suggested one would look well in the tree overlooking the ‘rock-pool’. This was about five months ago and what do you think caught his eye in Glanbia only the perfectly sized owl-stone composite. There was a tiny bit broken off its left ear so Scrubber pointed this out (gently) and this was taken into account. He also got a Camellia on the bargain bench-a bit yellow but quite healthy and guess what! He needed one more camellia to add to those in the scrub! Happy days.

The owl is sitting in the tree and when he gets a greenish tinge as he will from the drip of rain, he will fit in even better-and Scrubber wonders will he contribute to the dialogue of the scrub as he is not an old owl but  probably has already a good deal of wisdom stored up as is the wont of all owls, old, young, barn, snowy, long or short –eared.

A word re strimming. DON’T allow the grass to get too long as the labour involved in strimming the terraces really put Scrubber to the test. And he felt honour obliged to strim Elizabeth’s corner which had indeed disappeared under a sea of green and not to mention the grass in the Bog Garden which demanded that one steer a very careful course around the Gracedieu astilbes. I suppose a little but more often might be a good strimming motto.

The last area strimmed today was the  veg garden and there has been a start on digging it in preparation for next year when Scrubber finally gets some result from all those seed packets!

After all that work today Scrubber sat on the princess’s  seat and listened to the birds and watched a robin come and go among the leaf litter and noticed the arrival and departure of a heron on the tree across the river and then enjoyed the play of sunlight on the leaves and fell fast asleep for a little while and  woke up again about ten minutes later, surprised to find himself so surrounded by loveliness. Should do that more often!!!


1) Top of steps-road in the background

2) Looking up at Fern Corner

3) Tetrapanex fits in well in Scrub!

Yes, everybody warned him!

16 September 2014 14:32:45

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Last Monday Scrubber was all set. His wonderful long 50m garden hose was in readiness. The plants that were beginning to wilt would soon be refreshed. He was in his working gear. He bent down to tie his shoelace. Done. Turned to tie the other ---and the back went! He felt it go. Everybody had warned him about straining after rocks but nobody had mentioned shoelaces!!!

So here I am today, not in any pain but forbidden to garden and the sun is shining down. All I can do is fill a two litre milk carton with water and go to the most sufferin’ plants. There’s so much I could do but then I know other garden.iers have much more to contend with than a slightly strained back! And I know Ill be fine by Thursday or Friday. And Ill be sooo careful tying myshoes in future!

Book fair in Graignamanagh over the weekend. Its always great and the weather made it perfect. Among my purchases-a new collection of Gertrude Jekyll’s writing  and a copy (Ninth edition 1905) of William Robinson’s The English Flower garden. There was a modern facsimile edition (12 Euro!) but this was the real thing. Someone has kindly reimbursed me the price and I’m to have it as one of my Christmas presents!!!(Scrubber is very good for doing that sort of thing-pushing the delight of having them on into months ahead. Tantric gardening!!!)The vendor Dr John Edmondson seemed very knowledgeable and had lots of tempting gardening stuff which had I the money I would have bought. Copies of Robinson’s original magazine etc. You can google him at ACANTHOPHYLLUM BOOKS. Dr John not Mr Robinson of course!

Lovely programme on Great Dixter last night on BBCArts. It seems such a wonderful conception-everchanging. Hope you are all enjoying this wonderful Indian summer and that your gardens are giving you as much joy as mine is.And I will eventually get in those two new blue moon hollies that Scrubber found on a bargain bench.

I have also just learned Jane powers Sunday times yesterday) that Japanese anenomes (white Honorine  Joubert) are ‘happy in light shade’. Scrubber is happy that they are happy as he has a place!!!-and now to refill the two litre plastic  and go out and bottle feed the callicarpa!

Ah What luck! My very obliging son has just arrived and he is quite happy to help get the garden watered and to plant the hollys and two Phygellia! Oh lucky day!-hour later all four planted and watered and all the rest watered. Scrubber is a happy bunny -and the back seems to have improved a bit already!

Titles dont seem to come up on pictures.

1)After the loppin'

2)A path in the bog garden

3) there's now an edge to the 'rockpool'

Scrubber's 'loppin' mad!''

10 September 2014 22:52:03

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Oh its been so busy busy busy in the garden. Cherub has been throwing in new ideas and I feel Cherub Lute is not far behind him because I am making new discoveries and having little ‘Aha!’ moments and little disasters as well. Decided to try mirror in the ‘well that isn’t’. Well I got it in and broke it (seven years bad luck?) but it broke nicely and managed to get it down and covered sides with peat- mouldy clay. And it looked like a mirror in a hole rather than a translucent pool so that was the disaster. Lot of time spent for nothing but am satisfied it didn’t work.

Spent a long day clearing the top corner of the Patio which had become overgrown (polite word for jungle!) Was very pleased as also got some of the herb bed done. On Monday things began to happen. Got four camellias ( small healthy and cheap) and put them in in Scrub. Should be lovely in Spring. Then said I’d give half an hour to Scrub. Cherub was going at full blast and suggested I level off the bottom of a slope beside a path. Spent two hours at it! Found small rock and incorporated it into the slope and as I turned to come back up the evening sun came slanting in and caught the rock exactly-Id say Cherub Lute had a hand in that one! I also weeded under the Rhododenron and that made the slope  more obvious and set off the rhodo.

Tuesday saw Scrubber hoeing the veg beds and cutting the lawn. A branch caught his eye-not actually of course. So after the lawn was cut he went back and cut it down. One thing led to another and soon he was surrounded by branches. ‘Loppin’ mad’ would be a good description. But Ahhhh! It opened up a most beautiful vista and gave  prominence to a beautiful birch. It was one of those moments when you realize that something very beautiful had happened. There’s three beautiful in those last sentences and Sr. Josephine would have red penciled two of them! Scrubber even prevailed on Mrs. Scrubber to come out and view the little miracle.

And now today I cut all the grass and then decided to clear out the dreaded ground elder which had slipped into fern corner. Its not the worst of weeds and does come up easily and when cleared the area showed off the ferns all the better. Scrubber then decided to continue the leveling on the other side of the steps and that worked (It was only about two meters). Then passing the copper coloured hazel he noticed that there were an awful lot of suckers and if the loppers wee used!!!! There would be four main stems and the tree would be far more airy. He had done this on a beech near the sleeper steps and it worked. Well joy and rapture. The tree looked far better AND behind it was one of the three great rocks in the Scrub. Now Scrubber knew it was there because it is massive and is called Ungeheuer! (Which is German for a big giant , my dictionary tells me!-The two other giant rocks are Titanic and Behemoth!!!

There are three close together, oh yes where was I? Ungeheuer was in front of the Hazel but coming from the other side you never noticed it until you passed it. Now with the hazel brush cleared it has more prominence and the whole area is lifted. Call Scrubber mad orsad but it is these unexpected jolts of beauty or contrast or surprise that make up for all the handweeding and scrabbling and chopping down briars. And if it’s madness who’d be sane?!!!’

Scrubber does a strip!

03 September 2014 20:21:20

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No it’s o.k. honestly! The strip in question is a long very narrow bed about a foot wide that borders a grass path beside the veg patches. Scrubber had cleaned out these and put in some strawberry plants and some parsley. That’s the only thing he has in his veg bed! But anyway he decided today to do all the lawns just to keep everyplace looking well. Before he started on the side lawn he thought. Wouldn’t it be a good idea to quickly clean out the ‘rill’ i.e. the strip  bed containing chives and small standard roses. It was very overgrown so he thought a half an hour…. Three hard hours later it was done and also the small bed at the end of the side lawn, Ray’s bed which was quite a tussle! After that he mowed the rest of the Scrub so its fairly smart.

Just as well as four very nice people from the North viewed it yesterday and were very nice. They were passing and asked about some of the flowers they could see so Scrubber could not but offer to show them around—especially as the long border is finally weeded. They were on holidays in Borris and were most appreciative.

So you see the ‘strip’ is quite an innocuous one! Ill try to put up a photo. Also Ill try to put op one of the ‘well’ which is not a well but I imagine it looks a bit like one! I mentioned it in his last journal but the description wasn’t good. And there was very very little shifting of rocks this time. Honest injun!

Ive just noticed that the titles havent come up on the photos. 

no1 'The 'strip' in question!

no.2 'The 'well' that isnt'

No 3 Looking down on the  'well'-now that I see it wouldnt fran's idea of a mirror be brilliant down in there????


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