We're getting there- slowly. The constant rain hasn't helped, creating inevitable delays and the trellis (ordered from Anthony de Grey) took much longer to make than I thought it would. Anyway. Here's a snapshot of the new garden, as taken this morning. I'm hoping the trellis will be finished by this afternoon.
The dreaded conifer thing (which used to "grace" the corner) has gone. I managed to cut it down myself, pulling every muscle in my body as I did so- but it was well worth the effort. We're building trellis across the end of the garden, which squares off the awkward, tri-angular shape, and the Gothic arch helps to create the illusion that there might even be some sort of door leading into another garden. I like the idea of planting ivy, ferns, Solomon's Seal and other shady plants, to create a dark and mysterious place, beyond. That, at least, is the plan.
The nasty concrete "stone" slabs have been removed, and replaced with a gravel terrace. I've used 6mm Trent washed pea shingle, ordered from Stone Warehouse. It's growing on me. At first, I wasn't entirely sure (it was ordered blind, on the internet); I was expecting something a bit creamier and lighter in colour. This is a browny pink. The builders have also laid it quite thickly, so that your feet sink down into it, but I've been told that it will settle down, and I'm beginning to find that this is the case- it's much more compact than when it was laid down a week or two ago.
We've also installed a new, higher trellis on the left hand side. This will help to screen out the neighbours. I'm tempted to paint the wall on the left hand side, white. It's been built from a Midland brick, and clashes with the lovely creamy, yellow London stock, we've built our steps from. In the meantime, I've had it re-pointed in places. I'll make the decision when the grey trellis is finished.
So far, I'm thrilled with the results. What was an awkward, uninspiring back yard is turning into a charming, rather pretty- and dare I say it- romantic garden. And it's amazing, how much bigger it looks too. A lesson I'm learning is how important it is to get the structure right. This is what you're going to be looking at during the Winter. Planting is not enough.