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Beginner gardener with small London garden

My little garden is very neglected (the door to the garden is broken so we haven't done much to it since we arrived) To enter the garden we go down a spiral staircase.

There's not much growing in it apart from sugar snaps and some weeds.
It's very narrow and partially shaded with no lawn but two small flower beds on either side and one large, raised flower bed at the back. I believe the soil is damp.

We have a bench and a BBQ which I'd like to keep. I've decided to grow herbs in pots around the BBQ and staircase but I don't know what to do about the beds.

I would like lots of color and be able to encourage bees and butterflies into the garden and preferably have scented flowers. I was thinking of sewing some poppy or wild flower seeds but I don't know how long they'll take to grow.

Any advice is welcome image

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Posts

  • Steve 309Steve 309 Posts: 2,753

    If you get sunshine part of the way up one of the walls you could try a window box type arrangement there. Or a tree, shrub or climber with its roots in the shade and its head in the sun.  Clematis, maybe.  Or gooseberry if you want some food and you'll be there a few years.

    Good luck, whatever you try.

  • MillieWMillieW Posts: 6

    Hey Edd, thanks for you're reply.

    Here is a picture from last summer when I could access the garden (the door swelled up in winter. We've been pestering the landlord about it for months) although I've very embarrassed to show it. The picture was taken from the staircase.

    https://fbcdn-sphotos-f-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/t31.0-8/p600x600/1093790_10151561729546603_1240689320_o.jpg

     

    I tidied it up after that and had the ivy all cut back but it's probably all grown back now,
    My boyfriend has agreed to help me with the garden and I'll get him to do all the heavy work such as weeding ect. So we're happy to put the work in.

    On the left there is a large fence and the neighbors ivy tends to grow over. On the right there is a low wall and we can easily see into the other neighbors garden.

    The bench and BBQ is on the left but I want to move the BBQ to the right, next to the staircase and have potted herbs around it.

  • MillieWMillieW Posts: 6
    Steve 309 wrote (see)

    If you get sunshine part of the way up one of the walls you could try a window box type arrangement there. Or a tree, shrub or climber with its roots in the shade and its head in the sun.  Clematis, maybe.  Or gooseberry if you want some food and you'll be there a few years.

    Good luck, whatever you try.

    Hi Steve thanks for the advice. I think I will try putting some window boxes on the wall, it'll add a little more privacy as the wall is so low. image

  • SwissSueSwissSue Posts: 1,447

    Hi Millie (my mum was a Millie W.image). I don't live in England but from what I have read you are allowed to cut back whatever hangs over into your garden as far as your side of the fence, including ivy. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong!image

  • MillieWMillieW Posts: 6
    SwissSue wrote (see)

    Hi Millie (my mum was a Millie W.image). I don't live in England but from what I have read you are allowed to cut back whatever hangs over into your garden as far as your side of the fence, including ivy. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong!image

    Hi Sue. You're right and actually you can get you're neighbor to come over and do it for you, as the plant is technically theirs (I could be wrong). Then again that could just be in the countryside where people are nicer.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 77,506
    Edd wrote (see)

    Yes you are both right. The plant is your neighbours and you can cut it back but You have to return the clippings as they belong to the neighbour.image

    Always a good idea to mention to your neighbour that you'll be doing this - it can look slightly ????????? to find a load of hedge trimmings chucked over your boundary and can cause ill feeling, which I'm sure you can well do without image

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • Steve 309Steve 309 Posts: 2,753

    Yes.  Probably best to have a chat first.  He'll probably be only too glad for you to do the work, and won't want the offcuts (which can go at the bottom of your new compost heap).  (You have got a compost heap...?)

       "Or gooseberry if you want some food and you'll be there a few years."  If you decide on this it'll need careful training if it's not to attack you!

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 77,506

    That little garden is full of potential - it reminds me of one of my previous little Edens - you've got some lovely ferns there already - I had to plant mine image

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,456

    Hi Millie. I think you have a lovely little plot there which you can do lots with and enjoy. Would you be allowed to put trellis on the low wall? If so, you could put some 6'x2' or 6'x3' sections vertically and that would let you have climbers on that side to screen the neighbouring garden. It wouldn't have to be a solid screen - you could leave a gap between each section. Paint them in a pale colour perhaps - loads of paints to choose from and easily available. Lots of Clematis, Roses etc will be happy there and also annual sweet peas for a bit of instant scent and colour this year image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • Steve 309Steve 309 Posts: 2,753

    Ooh yes - sweet peas would be great (remember to cut the flowers before they fade to keep them going). And for that matter, you could grow some climbing beans up there too - pretty flowers and something to eat, and there are varieties with purple fruit too.

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