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Battle of the Bindweed - Round 2


How things looked in the beginning:

And how Round 1 ended:

As I continued cutting through the undergrowth, started to see wood, rather than the chicken-wire that made up the fence on all sides. When I cleared the last dead shrub, I found …

… a mysterious gate at the end of what had been a mysterious path! I’m a kid – if there’s a path it must lead somewhere, and if there’s a gate it must open to something new, and I have to find out.

The roots of the last bush stopped the gate from opening much

but I managed to squeeze through and view the terra incgnita:

If there had been a path beyond the gate, there wasn’t now. Down the road there’s a side road that curves sharply back on this one – I’d walked that way to get to the open ground behind our gardens, and had assumed that the garden of the first house backed (or sided) on to ours, to close the corner off, which was why I was so surprised to find a gate there.

The Estate Officer came to visit a week or so later; showed her the gate to ask if it was “theirs” or “mine” ie if they were responsible for the maintenance of the sagging wooden gate-post or if it was up to me; she said that there was a pocket of council land on the other side.

So there’s still new land for me to explore – and more room to get at that b**!!@@! bindweed!

There’s tons of dead wood in the belt of trees and shrubs beyond the fence: I’d been collecting some for small ceremonial fires, and had thought of burning more to add the ash to the composter. But the only way I could reach it before was to go all round the block to get ten feet from my back fence; I couldn’t get much into the belt because it was so tangled, but maybe now I can get in from the side

Lol, I might find even a side door into Narnia!!

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How exciting to find a secret gate at the bottom of the garden! I hope you have many happy ventures "to the other side" :)

10 Jun, 2014


happy exploring Fran, mind your footing, it looks so much better for a good chop back, you are doing a great job. Keep up the good work, Chelsea flower show next for you. lol :O)

10 Jun, 2014


thanks Mizzie and Olive.

I was wearing joggies, long sleeve shirt and rubber gloves that covered the shirt cuffs, and a hat, when clearing this much - maximum protection, lol. will do the same when I go "through the keyhole", at least till I can clear some manoevring space. I don't know how big that "pocket" is, but will be fun finding out.

I got the gardener to lift the shrub root on his last visit, so there's no bar to opening the gate all the way. Just need to pack a bottle of water and iron rations, pick up my machete and begin.

10 Jun, 2014


Good luck with your journey into the unknown Fran, who knows what you might find, a fox's den, a badger sett, or even a lost treasure. Look forward to hearing all about it in your next blog.

10 Jun, 2014


the adventure starts here! lol :O) 'Fran of the Jungle', now thats a good title for a story. :O)

10 Jun, 2014


You're right, Fran, if there's a path it needs to be investigated. You're Just following in the footsteps of all those intrepid early explorers :)

10 Jun, 2014


thanks Jaykaty and Olive and Gee

lol in my list of "possibles", forgot to include a rabbit hole to follow the White Rabbit down ...

I'll try to avoid disturbing wildlife, if i recognise the signs, which I probably won't! but if i nibble round the edges, and leave the main part alone ... at least find the extent of this "pocket" and clear that, or clear it a bit - maybe find a small un-overlooked space for a chill-out zone - the bough is there, all I need is a "jug of wine" and a "thou" to share it with.

10 Jun, 2014


That's really exciting! I love that! You've found a secret passage Fran! Keep exploring!

10 Jun, 2014


thanks dear! *s*

10 Jun, 2014


There'll be no work done on the garden now, until you've fought your way through the jungle - mind how you go!

10 Jun, 2014


Playing catchup yet again Fran, just read through your blogs and Oh My!!!!! you seem to be having a whale of a time, I'm so pleased for you best thing you did finding your new home, quite relieved on your behalf that you have now got yourself a gardener to tackle the lawn and the heavier jobs, hated to think of you struggling with the shears especially as the lawns are loving the weather and growing like mad at the moment, you're making good progress and I've noticed that your garden is getting bigger in each blog as you've been working your way to the boundaries, lol, I like the lovely yellow rose and as you said it can now grow better with its own nicely cleared space, lots of treasures appeared, I think it was a well loved garden at some point, you be careful when you go exploring through that little gate, no tellings what you'll find out there but the main thing is to keep enjoying your new home and garden.....

10 Jun, 2014


Reminds me of our previous house with a bit of overgrown spare land behind it. How exciting to find you have the gate and the access to a bit more land. You can get your helpers to find your Narnia and have a secret space to chill out lovely. A meadow if cut over once a year?

11 Jun, 2014


@ Stera - I've done a bit in the garden, need to pace myself and change tasks, and different muscles, or at least use them slightly differently! Took up a geranium and split it - actually, if tell apart into about 20 babies, so been planting a lot of those today in the front borders. that's enough backache for one day, so maybe back to the jungle tomorrow - or maybe not, as Friday is Gardener Day, at least in June, later it might be alternative Fridays.

@ Lincs, thanks daer - I'm having so much fun,(in a slightly masochistic way!) I was in a bit of a mood a couple of days ago, so took myself out of it by some physical exertion, and cleared a bit of the jungle beyond the gate. that worked off my mood! And last night I had a small fire, burning some of that cut-back wood for ash for the composter.

I'm sure the garden was well-loved at one time, but it didn't seem to get much TLC for at least a couple of years; such a shame for someone to have to sit and watch their loving care being slowly undone.

I'm going to work along tha back and into the opposite corner first; so many dead shrubs buried at the back of the rampant ones at the front; that should extend that corner, but I don't expect to find a gate there as well!

@ Dorjac - not sure about a meadow; the gardens on the other side of the "pocket" seem to overlap my right-hand fence bu about a third, and I've no idea how long or deep it is - if there's a house at the top of the road, and the other road comes round that, it could be only one house wide - would be lovely if it went all the way up to their back fence! would make it at least ten houses long!

I don't want to clear enough to be able to see the overlapping gardens; just enough to get in (if I breathe in) and be surrounded by green ,no sight of "civilisation" - though one can't escape the sounds of it, especially garden mowers!

Thinking about planting something to half-hide the gate; make it almost as much of a secret as it was when I moved in!

lol was saying the other day that I'll never win the lottery, but I think I already won it when I got the offer of this place

12 Jun, 2014


We have always agreed that our extra bit of garden was a relaxing secret place. Hard work to get it sorted but well worth the effort. Shame we got really awful neighbours move in and then an offer we could'nt refuse, so we moved here. It was good for the 12 years it lasted. I hope you enjoy your secret place as much.

12 Jun, 2014


sorry to hear that, Dorjac. any room for a "secret garden" where you are now? or secluded chill-out zone, at least?

As this will be council land, I won't do too m uch too it (she said with her fingers crossed!) - i can do "civilised" in my own space. The insects and birds and small animals are used to it being as it is - they'll be traumatised enough by a bindweed clear-out! well, some of it - won't be able to reach it all, and wouldn't if I could, as someone said it provides useful havens for small life. just a bit - and then a bit more, and then ...

12 Jun, 2014


Since I had the circle surfaced there is an enclosed dry lounging space decorated with Camellias, Heucheras, Crinum, Roses, Spirea, Tree Peony and 2 other peonies. Backed up by blackberries. Hazel nuts flourish above my head. Cyclamen Coum on my right hand. Laburnum, all in a space 30 feet by 12. So I must not grumble. The foxes liked it for their cubs as they could not be seen going about their business from the house. Your space has really been an undisturbed nature reserve. Ours was a rubbish tip and a dangerous children's play ground. I hope there hasn't been too much rubbish been tipped on your closed parcel of land.

13 Jun, 2014


Oh, your "quiet place" sounds gorgeous, Dorjac - and at this time of year, when nearly everything's flwoering - please take lots and lots of pics from all sides, and let us share and enoy

The only bit of "rubbish" I've found so far is a piece of weed control matting hanging on the back of next door's fence!

13 Jun, 2014


Fran that secret gate is brilliant. What a great find. My curiosity is now satisfied :-)

Enjoy your secret spot.

14 Jun, 2014


thanks, Sam. I've had a small go at clearing th ejungle, just enough to get a foot outside the gate; there's more of it than i thought at firt, so that'll keep me exercised for a while

14 Jun, 2014

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