Going back quite a few months we won vouchers from woodblocx for our efforts during grow your own for wellbeing week. I left off spending the vouchers until the building work had finished. I finished off building it last week and moving the patio furniture around. I went for a double bench and it feels like a nice solid bit of kit. Obviously, we will be lacking visitors currently with lockdown. As both me and Amy work in education this lockdown doesn’t look to change our daily routines much as we are still heading to work. So, we won’t get to enjoy the new seating area much for a little while.
1. The view from above
From above you can see the new seating area is taking up a decent space on the patio so everything has had a move around to accommodate. A few plants have been moved into the borders. We have Alice’s mud kitchen given its own space behind the bench and then the log stores have been placed opposite each other. The patio concrete is quite bad and it is something we’d like to get paved at some point in the future.
The seating area
The seating area is a decent size. Two of us can comfortably sit on each bench. The corner space is designed to be used as a planter but we thought it would be more useful as a table so I have built the tabletop additionally. The top lifts on and off so we can potentially use it as storage. Though it quite heavy so probably something that doesn’t come in and out much like the umbrella stand that will be away for the winter. The woodblocx work a bit like Lego. Each wooden block has holes in and then you put plastic dowels in so they then fit together like Lego bricks to make the design. It feels pretty robust. We’ll probably look at getting some bench cushions next year when the weather warms up and we want to sit out more.
3. Behind the bench
I have used the backspace to put a few shade lovers. These ferns and hostas are shaded by the bench and wall. These will also provide a bit of a wind buffer. I did have heuchera on here last winter but when I moved them back after the builders finished I found vine weevil. I have disposed of them and treated the garden with nematodes. It is just warm enough they may still work but I will need to keep a close eye on things in spring.
4. Alice’s mud kitchen
The mud kitchen has gained a bit of space. It is largely filled with charity shop finds. Currently, she is mainly making perfume from the deadheaded dahlias. To one side I have an acer and hostas, to the other side the fern pictured in the previous photo.
5. The log store
The log stores have been moved right along the wall close to the French doors. I put hanging basket hooks on previously for solar lights. These were cheap ones and half have stopped working. I’m keeping my eye out for some decent replacements. The mini-greenhouse has a few cuttings on the go and a few Digitalis lutea and a few heucheras I’m trying from seed.
The log stores are also acting as wind and sun buffers for an Acer palmatum ‘seiryu’. With our sea winds, I shouldn’t really bother with Acers but I have persisted anyway. Eventually, I will create enough buffers for them to thrive.
On the opposite fence to the bench is the water butt. It’s 300 litres and has served us well over this summer with a large amount of our watering coming from this. I reckon one more decent one and I could probably manage without using the tap but Amy needs bringing around to this idea. This area has gathered a collection of plants that don’t currently have a place. There are two large dahlias that I am waiting to be frosted. Then they can be lifted and I’ll sort this area properly.
So, that rounds out the patio. I still need to tidy some of it up but I’m sure the bench will get plenty of use. We Christened it on bonfire night with a mini-bonfire, marshmallows and sparklers. I hope you are all having good weekends and keeping well.