The first sinful trip to the garden centre saw us return with a car loaded with Clematis. A week or two later, we were back on the road, on our way to a friend’s 40th birthday party. It saw us travelling back to where we used to live and with that being quite a long way, we decided to make a day of it by going to our favourite nursery that used to be local to us. As I revisited the area we used to live in for the first time in two years, a strange mix of emotions went through my mind and it ended with a sense of detachment, feeling as though “that was then” and, “this is now” and somehow the “old life” was lived by a different person that was like me, but not actually me. Odd.
Anyway, the nursery, with its fantastic cafe, were having a root-ball tree sale. Cue rows and rows of trees with their root balls all wrapped up in cloth and us perusing them. “Oh here’s an Amelanchier, I’ve always wanted one of them!”, says I. “Look, here’s a Tibetan Cherry, Prunus Serrula, with that gorgeous polished bark that gleams in the sun!” says the other half. “They’ve got Laburnum! I’ve got that on my master plan and I’ve always wanted that tree in the garden.” says I again. “I can’t believe they’re selling these trees for the same price as a potted herbaceous perennial!”, we both say. We eye the trees, we guess at the length of the car, we go in for lunch, we eye the trees again, we ignore the length of the car, we look at each other, I get the trolley.
The rest, as they say, is history.
After the birthday party we’re returning home in a car filled with three root-ball trees.
- Prunus Serrula, the Tibetan Cherry
- Laburnum x Watereri “Vossii”
- Amelanchier, either “Canadensis” or “Lamarckii”. The two labels on the tree either say one or the other.
As well as the trees there were also three Clematis that inexplicably snuck in. OK, I couldn’t resist and they were in the “bargain” section of the nursery, which is always a risk but the cut down prices means that with a little care and attention, a plant can usually be coaxed back into health as long as its roots look well.
The areas of the garden these trees will end up in aren’t ready yet but we still couldn’t resist the bargain prices they were being sold for. Root-ball trees are cheaper than potted trees but will take longer to establish, however I don’t mind and have the time. For the moment, they are tucked into a hastily weeded nursery bed set into the patio and supported by tree stakes (a necessity).
I’m hoping that by the time they become dormant again, we’ll be able to move them to their final, prepared positions out in the garden. Unit then, they join the nomadic patio plants and that will actually make it easier to look after them, particularly when it comes to the frequent watering they will need, as they can be hooked up to the patio watering system.
After spending so long taking all the over grow, neglected and scraggy unwanted shrubs, trees and plants out of the garden, it feels like we’re reaching a tipping point where there’s more going into the garden than being taken out. With Fruit Avenue, we have eleven new trees planted in the garden, a veritable arboretum.