Since this summer will mostly be spent at home, I have taken rather more interest in the seating in the garden. We bought some new chairs for the garden table, and moved the older wooden seating to other spots allowing a choice of places to sit according to where the sun is. Two benches offer a seat in either full sunshine or a shadier spot, and the chair has remained in a corner of the patio ( a word I can’t stand but ‘terrace’ seems to imply something rather grander) to provide an extra seat at the table if needed.
Husband stained them green a couple of years ago and I made the seating pads for them all from foam covered with the fabric from a no longer used padded bedspread.
The new gazebo wasn’t the posh affair that had tantalised when I did my online search, but with prices of up to several thousands of pounds no wonder some of them looked stunning. A practical, and less costly, version was purchased to replace the canvas-covered one which had served us admirably for several years, but had finally given up the ghost. It was disappointing to find that the fabric of the new one wasn’t as substantial but it would do the job….or so we thought. It did until it rained heavily; whilst three sides of the canopy performed well i.e. the rain ran off, on the fourth side the water settled into a dip in the fabric and had to be removed manually. It had become so heavy that the fabric stretched and we were left with a permanent dip which not only looked unsightly but would fill up again with every shower. It was returned and we declined a replacement. A case of back to the drawing board.
Having recently spent some happy hours chatting with my friend whilst sitting under her much more substantial gazebo (the entire extent of my social life over the past few weeks) even in the rain, and being impressed by its appearance and permanence, I suggested to Husband that we bit the bullet and bought a similar one. Two days of blood, sweat (and not quite tears) later, he’d finished constructing it and we are delighted with the result. It should last for years. With a polycarbonate roof rather than fabric, the weighty construction provides a permanent canopy on the patio. The curtains are waterproof and can be left out all year though I’ll probably bring them in for the winter. The sitting room at the back of the house gets very hot in summer as the garden is south facing so having something (even the old canvas gazebo) outside the doors really helps to make it less so.
Husband planted freesias as a surprise. I was aware that something had been put in a while ago as there was a small area of freshly dug soil but when I asked he told me to wait and see. It’s been a good year for the sweet peas too, although I still can’t have them in the house. Strangely (or perhaps not), I’ve had no problem with the freesias and the scent is wonderful. I’m always torn between picking flowers to enjoy inside or leaving them in the garden to enjoy outside! I compromised and picked just a few freesias.
The hanging baskets are looking at their best right now, but the various plants on the wall haven’t done too well this year.
And finally, just because I’ve been feeling ‘snap happy’, a few other garden pictures.