Monday, September 12, 2016

Railings at The Front Garden

I was going to post about the progress of the plants at the front of the house but whilst collating photos for it I've noticed that we haven't featured the railings we installed in the same area earlier in the year. So the plant post will have to wait for a little while for a little railing interlude.

Now the space at the front of our house is tiny as most of you know, and we have to be extra creative and resourceful to make the area nicer and distinct from our neighbours. So far we have added several plants in blue pots and in September last year we planted a cherry tree in the ground. So far so good and we're not doing too bad in introducing plants to the limited space that we've got without sacrificing parking. However a little push further with jazzing up the front never did harm.

We've been considering putting up railings for a long time but never managed to until recently. Mainly because we weren't sure how our next door neighbour will react at the restriction of having railings on one side of their parking space. We took our time choosing the design we liked as there are a wide range of metal railings available. Second is the effort of putting one, as it will involve digging, chipping away at solid concrete, and cutting metal. But as if we're not used to hard work...

But it's our place so why be so bothered with our neighbour's thoughts when the railings will be within our boundaries? Also, railings will nicely demarcate our property, will be sympathetic to the age and style of our house (1930's), and another way of adding that 'extra' without using up too much space.

So one spring weekend we just went ahead and installed the railings.

We're really pleased with the end result and even Knickers seems to approve!

Going back to the cherry tree, we were sent a solar garden uplighter by the kind folks from The Solar Centre to try and review. First of all, the appeal of a solar light was there as it won't involve wiring back into the mains of the house hence installation will be quick, in minutes actually. 

The solar panel itself is discrete and almost disappears amongst the pots and the light itself looks contemporary. For the size of the light, it is powerful enough to softly illuminate the cherry tree once dusk hits for a good few hours. 

The verdict is still out how long will it light up once the very short length of daytime in winter fully kicks in. But more likely it will not be long as we're noticing it shortening already as it is. Still we think it's a great product for soft illumination and with a performance a very good improvement from your usual solar lighting.

The completed railings (taken back in March)
And back again to the railings, much to our pleasant surprise our neighbour was the first one to complement our new addition. Even their visiting parents went out of their way to talk to us and complement how it enhances our house. Other neighbours too said the same. 

Up next soon will be an update on the plants at the front of our house!

Mark :-)

Tuesday, September 06, 2016

A Different Style of Stripping

It's been over three years ago since we gave one of our Trachycarpus wagnerianus a full Brazilian treatment, how time flies!

Here's how it is looking now...

And a few more angles of the same plant...

We haven't removed any more fibres and old leaf bases since then and it is due some soon, which we'll hopefully tackle in the next few days (not that it's a big job!).

However, a couple of month ago we spotted this in a nearby garden centre...

We think it looks good too, a different style of trachycarpus stripping. It looks very 'tropical palm' as well.

There is definitely more than one way to skin a ..... trachy!

Mark :-)