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16 October 2014
Gardener's Corner

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Autumn 2001
 
John Cushnie On...
 

Are you a first time gardener, want your garden to be low maintenance, or just don't know where to start with your front or back 'garden'? Then let John Cushnie help you. Here is John's second instalment on how make your garden a perfect place to relax and enjoy for the years ahead.
Part One of John's Garden Make Over


What goes where ?
There is one golden rule when starting to garden - Do things in the right order.

There is not much point in laying or sowing a lawn if you have to rip it up for a path. A good plan is to do as much construction work as possible at the same time. Lay the paths and the patio before cultivating the soil. Once the main path is in place you can easily wheelbarrow materials about the garden.

PatioHaving listed your “must have” items you must now decide where they are to go and work out if you have enough space to accomodate them all.

Patio
Where there is only one patio it makes sense to construct it close to the house, possibly outside the living area through double patio doors. Make it sufficiently large to be able to entertain. Think of the size in terms of a suitable indoor room with space for seating, a table and a barbecue area.The surface should be all weather such as paving or tiles.

BenchSeats
It is nice and useful to have benches dotted about the garden.One may be in a shaded corner with another in full sun.






Water Feature
The sight and sound of running water is a marvellous attribute in any garden. If it can be designed close to the patio it will be appreciated on a hot, lazy, summer day.
Water FeatureWhere a pump is used to move water an electricity supply will have to be incorporated using armoured cable underground.



Play Area
It is reassuring when you can see the children at play. If the area can be seen from the kitchen window, the living room and the patio you will be able to relax. A temporary picket fence looks attractive and serves as a means of keeping children within bounds and animals out.

Vegetable Plot
Try to hide this behind a hedge or shrub bed. It tends to look untidy in late summer and autumn with bits and pieces of remaining crops not to mention yellowing leaves on old cabbage.
Finish off with lots of plants to produce colour at all times of the year. Try to space the permanent planting. After a few years closely planted shrubs will become overcrowded and in need of heavy pruning. Fill the short term gaps with bright and cheerful annuals which you have still time to grow from seed .

One final tip, you are allowed to change your mind.


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