Showing posts with label garden. Show all posts
Showing posts with label garden. Show all posts

Friday

An Organised Sun Room


The Sun tried to come out on different occasions this month but was terribly hindered by the wintery conditions that kept butting in like winds and rain and sleet and hailstones.

I was tackling the Sun Room but this fact about the weather did not encourage me at all.
Though as I write this the back garden is brightly lit from the sun after another lot of hailstones yesterday.








The Sun Room


The Sun Room in itself did not need much work as there are not too many places for items to be kept.

But a few tips are always useful to keeping it organised.

1.  Think about what you want in your Sun Room
2.  Think about what you want to be able to take outside quickly
3.  Think about how to make things HANDY!







The only cupboard we have in the Sun Room is in the TV unit and it is useful for storing light bulbs which I sorted and made a note of the types we did not have a spare one of.


Also in that cupboard we keep the 3D glasses that the kids got at various times just in case we need them to go see a 3D film sometime - which really is a very faint probability as Fred & I have not ever gone to a 3D film.  Perhaps the kids should have each kept theirs for wherever they are?


Then the other main things in that cupboard are
  • a few puzzle magazines,
  • Sun Tan lotion,
  • Sun Tan wipes
  • After Sun Wipes
  • and some pairs of sunglasses.


This is a useful spot to keep these as the Sun Room opens out to the Patio and when the sun appears (for the short periods that happens here in Northern Ireland and let's face it we need to make the best opportunity as we can of those short periods of time) we can grab those things on the way out to sit on the Patio or Deck area.


The bulbs were already in a basket but these Sunny Day items were just lying in the cupboard so I got one of my favourite small Lakeland Storage Caddies for these items that we need for hopping out to sit in the sun.
You can see in the pictures above & below that it is ideal in size and that handle makes it so easy to grab.






What else might I want in that cupboard if I am going to use it daily during the next 5/6 months?

Well I decided to add
  • a post it pad 
  • a notepad 
  • and a pen 

 because those are always useful things to have at hand instead of having to run to the study.


PLUS 
there was still room for the three remotes that are needed in that room.



Lastly 
There are two other things that I like to keep in the Sun Room but they will not be in that cupboard.





A navy fleecy throw 
which is very handy if it gets a bit cooler in the evenings 
or even if I just feel like curling up on the sofa to read .







The 4 cushions for the Patio Chairs 
which I keep in a jute type bag pretty much out of sight behind the chair which sits beside the door out to the patio so that any time we are going out for breakfast we just grab a cushion on the way past.  
With our climate the cushions never stay out!



I have already written about how much I love Arks and pictures of Arks last year but now I had decided that some of these may go soon!!! but some will stay here in the Sun Room.  Some of my favourite Ark pictures just match in nicely with the style and decor of the Sun Room.




Here are two on the bookcase that holds most of our CDs



And here is another one above a window





That does not mean that some other Ark decor items will not be found in other rooms in the house of course.










The Easy Way to Prune The Buddleia (Butterfly) Tree - Organising the Garden


Do you have a Buddleia Tree in your Garden?

Have you ever seen a tall bush that has a very attractive purple flower that tapers to a point?

This is a Buddleia Tree or as many people have named it the Butterfly Tree because it attracts butterflies to nibble and devour those lovely purple flowers.






Let me say right from the start today that this job was not FUNWORK!



No definitely not.

Why?

Because I am not a keen gardener.

I ended up tired and with sore hands and arms.

Fred was also very tired.




However it was made EASIER because 

1.  we worked together on it 

2.  we had the right tools 

3.  we had the right plan for the job.


It all started when we realised that Fred was able to take some time off last weekend from the report he was writing and the weather was dry and not too cold.

So we went out together to the front garden to tackle the pruning of the Buddleia Tree or Butterfly Tree.




Right Tools

Fred got out the big tarpaulin type thing we have for bundling up the branches to go to the dump and then started into the tree.

Now the first year we had to do this we were inexperienced and did not have 2 pruning shears nor the tarpaulin but we learned from that experience and now we are properly equipped.

When I came out Fred had already started and was busy in behind the tree.






He had one side well started

and




a pile of branches were waiting for me to cut them up smaller and put them on the tarpaulin

and




so were a second pile.





Yes that is me with the pruning shears cutting branches to make them smaller to be more manageable for collecting up and going to the dump.





Fred was of course still busy cutting at that tree





and throwing out more & more branches toward me.





When I had got through those two original piles I called Fred out to do another job that is not so hard.




Right Plan






To jump up and down on the pile on the tarpaulin so that they didn't get too high.

Definitely think he enjoys that more than the pruning from the look on his face in the different pics.






Then the same process started all over again with the rest of the branches until we had them all cut and flattened and some of another bush added to the pile.





Of course a good workman will always clean up after himself.




More Right Tools

Next comes some more very important equipment for this job.



The Bungee cords (at least that's what we call them).

I love these things because they are so very useful inside and outside the house.






Continuing the Right Plan

The tarpaulin has metal eyelets at the corners and along the sides so Fred takes one of these elasticated Bungee cords and attaches it to one of the corners and then




stretches the cord out and attaches it to the opposite corner.

He repeats this in the same way for the other two corners and then




joins the opposite sides together to complete the bundle.





Now that really is a large bundle but with the 4 cords it is well held together ready for the journey in the boot of the car to the dump.


But

will it fit in the boot of our car?




That is what we said the first time as well and there was no problem but the car we had then was bigger.





However we still have no problem with this car as well as the boot is a good size




and with the back seats down the bundle goes in easily, and yes I do help him!




The Best Tool!

Well in my eyes the best tool for this type of job is the next thing Fred decided to buy because it made my job so much easier after the first couple of years.

I call it a wood shredder because it is just like a large paper shredder.

So much easier on my hands and arms and it is amazing how large a branch it will deal with.






It even took a branch this size




and can manage thick ones well.




The Last Good Tool

Then someone Fred met at the refuge centre (dump) very kindly gave him one of those large white bags and it is easier for us to empty straight from the shredder into the bag







And easier for Fred to get in and out of the car because of the handles.







Now here is the tree when the job is finished.




It is well pruned back as these trees have to be and you do not have to be extremely careful in the pruning and as an experienced gardener told us a few years ago "the more they are pruned back the better they will flower".



So basically it is a relatively easy gardening job to do because 
you do not have to be too careful how or where you cut 
as long as you do prune it well back 
and 
do it either in March or early April (Spring)
or October (Autumn)




So to make it easier learn from us and have

the right plan

the right tools 

and 

right company 

for the job.


Now we are wondering if again we were not stringent enough in our pruning but this is roughly the same as we did last year and we had a good result from that as you can see.




And the best test of all is how many butterflies it will attract.

We had more last year than the year before although they flittered around so much it was hard to get pictures of them.

Although this was a day of hard work for me (I'm not fit) when it comes to the Summer I will have many days of pleasure because of my beautiful Butterfly Tree.


If you have a Buddleia enjoy your butterflies.




















Sun & Work in the Garden - Organising



Northern Ireland had some great weather this week so definitely it was time for the GARDEN.



We have to be flexible here so when it is good weather we get out and tend to the garden and when it is not so good weather we do inside stuff obviously.


      So I was out in the garden every day this week.






          Gosh did I work hard?



MON
  • I cleaned up those two white PVC sun loungers that sat in our back garden since last summer.
  • I lay on that sun lounger and tried to do some work on my laptop but the sun was too bright and so I couldn't see the screen properly so gave up and went inside for a drink.
  • Later I lay on that sun lounger and read a short story by Agatha Christie.
  • Later I did get up and go in and put in a washing  -  well it was really too hot to work in the garden on Monday


- quote of the day from me on Facebook



TUES
  • I posted about blogging on my blog.
  • I lay on that sun lounger and read another short story by Agatha Christie.
  • I wrote a blog post based on those sun loungers in the garden for my Wednesday post




  • Later I did put in another washing
  • Then I did a little ironing  -  well it was really too hot to work in the garden again on Tuesday



WED
  • I searched for some pictures that I needed to make a collage to finish off that blog post about the sun loungers and then posted it.
  • I went out to the front garden and did some weeding until I was too hot and tired

    First Section was cleared completely of weeds

         
Next Section partially cleared of weeds


Next Section not weeded

  • I had a little fun on facebook with a few posts.
  • Later I did put in another washing
  • Then in the evening I went out to the front garden and did some more weeding and brushing up  -  well it was a bit cooler and better for working in the garden

Section on other side nearly fully cleared of weeds
and good news the badly pruned Lavender is starting to grow again.



- quote of the day from me on Facebook


THURS
  • I face timed with our daughter in South Korea after breakfast for me and just before bedtime for her.
  • I got bananas for a special person who returns home from Morocco on Friday evening.
  • Did a lot of sorting of photographs on the computer and scrapbooking things.
  • Later I did put in another washing     
  • Then in the evening I went out to the front garden and cut the grass there  -  well it was about time I got that lawnmower out

Front lawn cut but needs some treatment


- quote of the day from me on Facebook



FRI
  • I did another washing
  • I tidied up the kitchen.
  • Did more sorting of photographs from my phone on to the computer
  • Then in the afternoon I went out to the back garden and cut the smaller section of grass there
  • Later I went back out and cut the larger section of grass at the back  

-  well I did want to get it all finished for Fred coming home 

and

I did have to get this blog post out today!








HOUSEWORK  /  FUNWORK 


Which one won out this week?


Had to be FUNWORK because the rest of my time spent indoors was spent on
 the computer or ipad!