The Garden. Getting closer to finding biodiversity ideals.

Intentions are to have a wildflower patch over the area at end of raised bed. Get through to it through the arch. A simple open fence to the right of the raised bed to section off the area. Want a bench in there to be amongst the wild flowers. Also in that area? The Magnolia has finished flowering. The sweet apple tree beyond it awaits to grow fruit yet. They are usually a picked harvest in late September. The wild rose needs a strengthened wire fence to hang on. Currently the ground is at end of bluebells stage.

Time to enjoy the Garden. Sunshine is looking good.

It is ethically and ecologically important, for ourselves, to adopt the profile of a Permaculture and Biodynamic/Biodiversity gardening philosophy. And so the biodynamic ethos continues. The garden has always stayed organic as possible, over the past 28 years since we have lived here. We are next to a farmer’s field who grazes sheep on the land so no crops. Beyond that are ancient deciduous trees in a small woodland space.

Both permaculture and biodiversity methods intended.
From Huw Richard’s splendid book ‘The Vegetable Grower’s Handbook’.

My wife, who owns a vegetarian Wholefood Shop in Machynlleth, meets and chats with many customers who have gardening ethical ideals too. Her suppliers also grow with organic and biodiversity ideal philosophies. So a keen discussion from her chats from the day can ensue. It’s in the community system to just chat holistically. I spoke with a friend recently who asked if I had tried lunar gardening for example. These conversations lead to enquiry.

Machynlleth is a town of forward thinkers. A community that shares ideals. Way back in the early 1970’s, my wife and I visited on holidays here two to five times a year. We went to the Centre for Alternative Technology at least twice a year right up into the early 1990s. We brought our two children for weeks over the two to five times yearly holiday visits to the area too.

We moved here 28 years ago. Machynlleth has always looked at sustainability and zero waste ideals. And so, even living 10 miles from the town, it is important to spread and continue this philosophy.

View from top garden. The sea is ‘over there’.

Please tap on the photographs below to enlarge.

Recently our gardening experience has now settled to a ‘light at the end of the tunnel’ stage. Chopping away at the jungle (end of thread photographs) a year and a half ago had been a hard process. But on reflection the simplicity of allowing our immediate nature to contribute to the soil has been a positive. Under no illusions about the compromises needed to get going. It will be nice over the coming years to develop our own contributions to, for example, seed harvesting for subsequent planting. Or. Complimentary gardening with plant companionship ideals. Insect hotels, low ground level log pile. But this is an ongoing project of ‘finding outs’.

So to start off insect attraction, we want an area for attracting the bees and budderflies (spelling in memory of a good Flickr friend, Michael) and a decent sized area exists beyond the raised bed. However, yesterday I was rake dragging mounds of earth left for a year in the small square slated floor 6 x 10 feet area of the old pigsty. A small enclosed walled space with a slate roof sty attached that was apparently indeed a place that pigs were kept. It provided an idea for woodland shade wildflower varieties. Rich leaf mould mulch begged for this inclusion.

Sunshine filled area.

Last year we had intention to get a natural compost from the immediate area of fruit trees and old woven hazel screening fences. So breaking down into this compost natural mulch involved small twigged branches of damson/silver birch/plum/apple wood, green nitrogen plant choice of Woodruff, nettles, dock leaves, etc, the three old broken up hazel screens. Then? Added the surrounding rich leaf mould drenched earth onto the pile and left it. Over a year, it has broken down very nicely.

Small tree surrounded/wood shade area. To be scattered with appropriate seeds.
To extend across to the sides and front of the dead hedge.

So now we have a small area above to plant with appropriate wood shade wildflower choices. Just ordered these choices below. Arriving in a couple of days.

Achillea millefolium, Aquilegia vulgaris, Borago officinalis, Campanula Medium, Centaurea Montana, Cheiranthus maritimus, Delphinium consolida, Digitalis purpurea, Geum chiloense, Hesperis matronalis, Hypericum perforatum, Impatiens balsamina, Lathyrus odoratus, Linaria maroccana, Lobularia maritime, Lupinus polyphyllus, Malvus moschata, Malva sylvestris, Myosotis sylvatica, Nemophila insignis, Papaver rhoeas.

Please tap on the images below to enlarge.

The other wildflower intentional area, which is very much larger, is visited by full sun for many hours. We have two boxes of meadow/wildflower seeds and the intention today is to get them onto the earth and riddle soil over the area to cover. The small wildflower patch by the fruit tree covered area will expand to include the space at sides and front of the enclosed dead hedge I built. Already robins (inside pigsty) and blue tit’s (hole in apple tree) are nesting. I had my hair shaved off the other day. I kept it and am putting it close to nesting. May contribute to their nest building!

Please tap on the photographs below to enlarge.

Still lots to do, develop ideas and think about where to take all this. A small still pond, insect hotels, and, as said, a few ideas yet to be found out. But, in reflection, it did arrive here today from this below 18 months ago. And a house to totally decorate at the same time, top to bottom, too. Retirement rocks.

12 thoughts on “The Garden. Getting closer to finding biodiversity ideals.”

    1. 😆 My thought was that too. Then I thought long term planning strategies. Invite the bees, who pollinate the apple trees, that then produce lots of apples…………to make lots of home made cider with! Tortoise and hare just went through my head. All the best Brenda.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I buy Live Mother cider vinegar with added raw/unpasteurised honey, turmeric and black pepper in it. Organic and probiotic. Have about 20 to 25 mls a day. If I haven’t got a bottle of the ready made I make up my own with manuka or choice of our local honeys added. Root turmeric is best. Never tried cider with honey though. Sounds interesting. Speaking of alcohol……Cheers Brenda.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. You can buy books on a million and one uses for cider vinegar. 😊 One of the super foods. I use it with paprika mixed in for a sharp add to raw vegetable salads. Tastes amazing.

        Liked by 1 person

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