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Garden revamp

Posted: Mon Apr 20, 2020 7:53 am
by Green Aura
As the climate has changed quite dramatically up here over the last five years, with seemingly never-ending high winds and rain, we'd concluded that we wouldn't be growing outdoors any more. The winds had blown down the polytunnel - we re-built it but it was never very satisfactory after that. So we've reduced our growing efforts to tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers, all of which can be grown on our SW facing windowsills.

The garden, in the intervening period had just become a jungle or thistles, couch grass and nettles. We had so little time we could get out to tend it and so little inclination on the odd few days of clement weather we did get. A few health issues got in the way too.

However, the bug to grow more has been niggling and I started to plan how we could adapt to our current conditions. A couple of months ago we caved and bought a greenhouse. We haven't got to the point of erecting it yet, but in the meantime we've built a 1.6m "hit and miss" fence to protect it from the wind, moved various things like the bunkers which house all our tools, pots etc. Have started to empty old raised beds to either move or scrap and have the timber to build more now the space we have is becoming clearer. The only thing stopping us building the greenhouse now is that we'd like to anchor it in concrete but, due to current restrictions, we can't go and get any more (we have some, bought for another purpose which can wait a while). So that's my current job - working out how to make it secure with what things we do have.

And this last week we've had sunshine!!!! All while OH was on holiday.

Re: Garden revamp

Posted: Mon Apr 20, 2020 8:03 am
by Flo
You realise that you aren't the only people with no rain? We've had nothing but a drying easterly wind for weeks and weeks. And weeks and weeks. So at the moment the only thing that would survive here is something from a dessert used to dry, sunny and cold windy weather. Great for growing vegetables. Not.

Should your rain return - push it southerly to all of Northumberland.

Re: Garden revamp

Posted: Mon Apr 20, 2020 8:43 am
by Green Aura
It's due back at the weekend, Flo. I'll do my best. :lol:

Re: Garden revamp

Posted: Wed Apr 22, 2020 8:17 am
by Flo
The amount of hard labour being undertaken during the present lock down type situation is amazing. Big projects like this are popping up all over the forums I visit. I wonder how many half done projects will be left though if and when things loosen up. And the consequences of having to look at half done work will be "interesting".

Local daughter is working from home and her self employed husband has had his planned paid work deferred till later (if ever) and so has been catching up on jobs that have been discussed for oh, the last 25 years or so. The cellar has been draft proofed, has decent cladding and is now painted. Seems they managed to clear it out before the local tip closed. The floor boards in the sitting room have been stripped and repainted (carpets are so much less work but the floor was boards when they moved in 26/27 years ago). I've never seen the bookcase tidy in living memory. Apparently the next project when the cladding arrives is moving the bath and installing a proper shower. I hear that there are plans afoot to put a proper window in the cellar when business reopens to supply the window.

Re: Garden revamp

Posted: Wed Apr 22, 2020 8:43 am
by Green Aura
Or project definitely won't go unfinished. My biggest concern is whether the greenhouse will stand up to our weather conditions - even with the new fencing. I know the winds we had in 2015 were supposedly "once in 100 years" but these timeframes are definitely shrinking. Seeing what it did to our reinforced polytunnel was quite terrifying.

Re: Garden revamp

Posted: Thu Apr 23, 2020 5:48 am
by ina
What kind of green house are you getting?

Re: Garden revamp

Posted: Thu Apr 23, 2020 9:24 am
by Green Aura
It's a wooden frame with polycarbonate windows that are fitted properly, not those flimsy clips. We used to get windows popping out regularly with even the feeble (by comparison) winds we used to get in Manchester.

So hopefully this will be better suited to conditions up here than aluminium and glass.

I was looking back at a conversation I had on here, with oldjerry, about wind breaks. I commented at the time that if the polytunnel failed, with all the extra reinforcements etc, I'd give up gardening! Well, it did and I did, but I'm going to have another go. My neighbours manage but they have a 6' fence all round. I'd been desperately trying to hang on to the view over the loch. Well, it's gone - we've got a 5' fence (they're the only fence posts we'd got and we obviously can't get out for longer ones) and it feels more sheltered already, even though we've only built half of it thus far.

Fingers crossed - this is definitely the last time! :lol:

Re: Garden revamp

Posted: Thu Apr 23, 2020 11:24 am
by Odsox
Green Aura wrote:
Wed Apr 22, 2020 8:43 am
My biggest concern is whether the greenhouse will stand up to our weather conditions
As someone else who lives in a draughty corner of these British Isles, I would have recommend that you definitely consider building your own greenhouse, preferably a lean-to if possible.
All my greenhouses are made with 3 mm float glass (recommended to me when I first moved here) rather than the 2 mm horticultural glass, but I have no idea what polycarbonate sheets will be like.
I think I would be more comfortable with glass as 2' square sheets of 3 mm domestic glass are quite flexible where 2 mm horticultural will crack with storm force wind pressure and suction. The only 3 mil sheet of glass that broke here in 25 years was my father-in-law hitting it with a strimmer.

Whatever, good luck, I would never be without at least one greenhouse if I could help it.

Re: Garden revamp

Posted: Sat Apr 25, 2020 6:02 pm
by Green Aura
We've considered it but we're talking major construction (the house is 20m long) and it would need to be quite a substantial build. If we were planning to stay it might be worth it, but we're still planning on moving in the next year or so.