Planting in the Bog Garden

Shortly after guzzling lunch, we went back down the allotment, each armed with a different delivery. My husband drove the first back of decking boards down. The 8ft boards were so long they only just fitted into the car. I walked on ahead, carrying the bog plants and a new pond pump for the mini pond. Upon arrival, I opened up the shed and noticed that the pond pump was not working properly. The water level had dropped to below the pump’s preferred level. I spent several minutes trying to sink the pump down to a better level whilst trying to keep it from tilting. In the end, I had to rearrange the entire stack of bricks and move the iris to get it stabilised.

The plants I bought for the bog garden are specialised and moisture loving. I had tried to buy a range of different heights and flower shapes to make it more interesting. With the monsoon we have been having over the past week, I was hoping the bog garden would be wet enough to accommodate the new plants. I needn’t have worried. I knelt down to put in the first plant and sank several inches before I regained my balance. The soil was saturated rather than wet! I placed the water forget-me-nots and the bogbean plants around the edge of the pond and put the two larger plants (a purple pickerel and something else with beautiful white frond flowers) further out. The final plant is more grassy and I decided to plant it between the sticks at the top end of the bog. Most of these plants flower between April and September so I hope we will get some as they establish themselves.

Putting the pump into the bog pond was relatively simple if you could manage to put it in without stepping or leaning on any part of the bog garden. I went on a scavanger hunt for a brick and brought it back to form the main part of the pump stand. I placed it on end and put the pump on top. Irritatingly, it was just too deep for the pump. So off again to find something to raise the pump just half an inch more. I discovered a small fragment of title and it worked perfectly. I positioned the solar panel and stood back to view the overall effect. The pond is still missing a water plant (on its way!) to help filter the water so it’s clearer. But I am rather proud of my bog garden.

Whilst I was busy with the bog garden and ponds, my husband had been lugging huge amounts of decking board from the car to the veranda. The weather forecast isn’t brilliant for tomorrow and our plot is so sodden that we won’t be able to sort out the boards until it dries.

Before we left, I dropped by Cliff’s shed to say hello to Koko. Cliff appeared and we had a discussion about the plethora of slugs that have appeared this year. Alan joined us to commiserate about the loss of plants to ravenous slugs. Apparently they have destroyed all Alan’s lettuces in just two days! We said goodbye to Alan, Cliff and Koko and walked home pleased with a job well done.

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