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Where to start & where to draw the line?

D0rdogne_DamselD0rdogne_Damsel Saint Yrieix La Perche, Haute Vienne/Dordogne border. FrancePosts: 3,952
I've been gardening this week (at last) for several hours at a time and my mind started wandering and wondering.... :open_mouth:

After a long winter the garden is in much need of attention, and it is quite large, despite the fact I have been trying to make it more low maintenance for nearly a year. Each morning I go out and aim to do one thing and end up doing something else, I always say I'll stop for a break at a certain point and then just keep carrying on. 

So, my question is where do you all start, how do you decide what to do, do you stick with a plan or go with the flow, as it were. And where do you draw the line and say that'll do for now?

I try to do the worst areas first, or the ones that will make the most impact, but then I dither and think I should stay on top of the areas that are ok. Sometimes I think I will just cut back the worst of it and weed later, then find myself on hands and knees getting "just that last" bit of weed out. Sometimes I concentrate on the entrance area because you can see it every time you come in and then other times I think I should go to the bottom of the garden and deal with that before it gets carried away - decisions decisions. 

I know there is no right or wrong answer, I am not looking for a solution. I am working hard so whatever I end up doing is having some effect but I was just wondering how you all go about maintaining your garden and dealing with these daily dilemmas.  :wink:

On that note, the rain has stopped so I am off out again. 

"To nurture a garden is to feed not just the body, but the soul." — Alfred Austin


  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 28,558
    edited February 2021
    I don't care whether it works or not but I follow the lunar calendar so that if I go out to weed or plant a flower bed on a flower day I stick to that and don't get distracted by roots, fruits or leafy stuff.   

    Being female, I find I need to stop every now and again just to go the loo and that involves removing boots and gloves so I also have a drink to keep me hydrated and that makes a pause which is needed cos when you hit 27 is not sensible to work a whole day non stop as it tends to wipe you out for the following day.

    I also have other interests so I can't garden every day even if I wanted too which means I don't get bored tho I can, sometimes, feel overwhelmed by what needs doing.  Breaking it all up into the 4 groups helps with that too.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • D0rdogne_DamselD0rdogne_Damsel Saint Yrieix La Perche, Haute Vienne/Dordogne border. FrancePosts: 3,952
    That's one way of staying focused @Obelixx. 😁

    I pulled a whole pile of honeysuckle and ivy runners out of one bed today, but they stretched into another bed, where I realised some bamboo was shooting up, started sorting that out and noticed a shrub needed pruning, then I saw some creeping it goes on. 🙄😅
    "To nurture a garden is to feed not just the body, but the soul." — Alfred Austin
  • AnniDAnniD South West UKPosts: 11,001
    I try very hard to be organised !  I have 3 flowerbeds and the theory is l divide the largest one into 3, therefore 6 sections. I work my way round clockwise and do one section as and when the weather permits.
    Needless to say l do get sidetracked, but that's the idea anyway.
    It might be worth dividing your garden in similar fashion and working on a section each time  :)
  • PurpleRosePurpleRose North YorkshirePosts: 538
    My gardening bad habit is starting something then wandering onto something else that catches my eye without finishing the first task. I then have to force myself back to the original job. I have never fully got over this. I am not as bad as I used to be though. I have to give myself a set of jobs and stick to it. 
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 33,307
    I start when I can no longer procrastinate
  • tui34tui34 Béziers, Herault, FrancePosts: 2,573
    @D0rdogne_Damsel   I have the same system.  It starts off with feeding my one and last hen.  I see something - start pulling - then when I put that into the wheelbarrow, something else catches my eye and I make a mental note to tidy up that area, and so it goes on - BUT - everything gets done in the end.  Well.....
    A good hoeing is worth two waterings.

  • D0rdogne_DamselD0rdogne_Damsel Saint Yrieix La Perche, Haute Vienne/Dordogne border. FrancePosts: 3,952
    I'm glad it's not just me. 😅
    "To nurture a garden is to feed not just the body, but the soul." — Alfred Austin
  • raisingirlraisingirl East Devon, on the Edge of Exmoor.Posts: 6,326
    OH tends to make me tea when he finishes whatever job he's doing (usually when he finishes a concrete mix) so I stop. If no one interrupts me I just keep going until I get hungry
    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first” 
  • BigladBiglad East LancashirePosts: 2,769
    Nowt wrong with the butterfly approach @D0rdogne_Damsel ;)

    My knackered old carcass doesn't like performing repetitive tasks or staying in the same position for very long. Flitting from job to job, discovering something else to do on the way, works well for me. I can be in my relatively small garden for hours and hours as long as I keep moving and changing what I'm doing.

    I often set off with just one task in mind and never actually get to it :D

    Having said that, I currently have a very bare garden (lots of removing stuff last year) and a number of unfinished jobs! 
  • FireFire North LondonPosts: 17,116
    I try and distinguish if I want to potter (ie I'm not trying to 'achieve' much) or if have a schedule and a plan that needs following. If I decide to potter, then I let my attention get caught where it will. If I need to get stuff done, then I generally do a 'one room at a time' approach. I work from the back of the garden, doing all the jobs before moving forward through the space. I start by the shed and compost bins and end up by the wood stores. This only works because I have a small enough garden.

    I generally have to stop when back pain tells me to. Having a friend work with me is immeasurably the best way to get a load of targeted jobs done and dusted.
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