1st. June 2016 - I'm still having a very unreliable Broadband service from BT. "It's hard to believe" that it's actually getting worse, so I'm going to spend the next few days investigating alternative suppliers, in between welcoming guests, and when I have access to the Internet. This will probably mean having a satellite dish or new aerial. I did approach one company based in Lincoln a few weeks ago, but their service didn't cover my area.
I took the photo below a couple of days ago, looking through the kitchen gate towards the house. The laburnum is the only remaining example of the three that I planted beside the posts when this pergola was erected by Reg, probably in 2002. I had a dream of training them across the supports to create an arbour effect, but like a lot of my good intentions, which tend to get compromised, often due to the poor, sandy soil, I can't blame the soil on this occasion. Can you believe that we chose to position a water feature on top of the best soil in this garden? The Holmes family, who were the last residents in the mid 1960s, kept their chickens here, which explains the loamy conditions. I suspect that the plans to train the laburnum were shelved when we discovered that Tony, my husband, had bowel cancer. Whilst he was having an operation, I designed a couple of new beds at the bottom of the lawn in which I planned to plant several buddleja bushes, Tony's favourite plant. With Reg's fantastic help, we managed to complete the task before the patient returned home, and now they need moving because that are trying to cope in the shade of a liriodendron tulipifera (tulip tree) that is nearly mature enough to flower.
The mauve wisteria is flourishing in the shade of the ancient apple trees, whereas those planted in the sunshine have failed.