In life, it is always interesting to get a different perspective on something.

Recently I was able to get a view of my garden from one of the readers of this blog when Bobbie and Ron Gratz, whose garden is featured in the Dogs and their Gardens section of the site, came to visit.

Some of Bobbie’s photos are quite similar to ones that I have taken, but it was really interesting to see what caught her eye as she wandered around on a November morning.

I love this picture of the trellis around the pond with the rose and clematis that adorn it starting to change colour.  The blue of the post works so well with the blue sky, but this is a picture I would never have thought to take.

I love these frogs playing leapfrog – although some visitors are not always sure what they are doing – it depends on the angle they are viewed from.  I bought them in US and have never seen anything similar in UK.   I love the moss growing between the slabs that form the seat around the edge of the raised pond that is now their home.  I usually get rid of the moss whenever I pressure wash, despite wondering on many occasions whether I should leave it.  Maybe next time I will see if I can get the slabs clean whilst preserving the moss.

When I looked at this photo, I was really flummoxed.  I couldn’t think of where it could be – I don’t have a wooden bench anywhere in the garden.  I looked at the picture again and again and then I noticed the trellis in the background.  There is only one place in the garden where I have that sort of trellis.  I suddenly realised where the photo was taken.  Turned through 90°, the picture is a sideways on view of one of my Trachelospermum growing to create a green window.

We had to have a photo with one of the dogs.  Here, Bobby has managed to get a feel of the garden from their perspective .  There is no doubt that this photo is taken outdoors and yet the garden is almost irrelevant to the story.  Far more important is the mission that Ruby is on – if only we could read her mind.

Thank you, Bobby, for introducing me to a new perspective on my garden.  Through your fresh eyes, I now have a whole new view of my outdoor space.

Well, it’s almost November, so winter must be around the corner – though I have to say that the temperatures today gave little indication of up upcoming change in weather.   The plants also haven’t quite sussed that things are changing.  I have a hemerocalis in bud, a few roses out and a clematis that refuses to give up, as well as a few geraniums in flower.   The goldfish too haven’t yet decided that it is time to drop to the bottom of the pool, they still come straight to the surface when you walk by the pond, in hope of some food.  The berries on my pyracantha are a wonderful bright red – who says autumn is a season that lacks interest ???

The main job today was pressure washing the paths.  This is a job I hate doing as it is such a palaver to get everything ready, but when the job is done, the paths do look wonderful.  Once the pressure washer is out, it must be hooked up to both water and electricity and then I get changed into my protective clothing (waterproof trousers and boots) and then we can get going.  I have to admit that getting a water tap in the garage has made things a lot easier than when I had to lay out the hose from the back door.  The main reason for this pressure washing is safety over the winter.  We frequently make the journey between the house and the garage and I would have for anyone to slip and hurt themselves.  I tend to do the job again in spring to remove the effects of the winter and then sometimes  I do it again a couple of weeks before the garden opening in June if I feel that the paths are looking a little scruffy.

The biggest problem with this job is finding the right day to do it.  It has to be at a weekend and it has to be a dry day (electricty and rain are not the best companions, in my opinion) – a combination which is exceedingly hard to find at this time of year.  The forecasters told us that today was the day – tomorrow is going to be very wet :(.  I was meant to be at a dog show, but I have quarantined myself for this weekend.  The dogs have had a sickness bug and the last thing I was to do is pass it on to anyone else.  So, luckily I was free today and able to get on with the job.

The area by the pond is paved with a modern grey stone, which looks a little better when it has been cleaned, but it is the “long walk” which looks best after the procedure.  It is made from York stone and really does suffer from algal growth.  There is an immense sense of satisfaction as the path reveals its true colour from under its dark green covering.  It is also wonderful to see how much the lichen like the York stone.  None grow by the pond, but colonies are becoming very established on the York and add a great deal of character to a simple walk to the garage and back – if you look down and the path is clean enough to reveal them in all their glory.

So now our main paths are ready for the winter.  Now all I have to do is finish clearing and then get on with some planting.  I have cyclamen, daffodils and tulips waiting to go into the ground as well as a lovely young Carpenteria Californica that I was given, but that will have to wait to be planted until its fleecy jacket arrives to protect it from the worst of the winter weather.