Saturday, 24 August 2013

A Close Shave

The ivy had reached the roof tiles and was beginning to cover the chimney so it had to be chopped.

He had a neat business card and headed note paper.  He has carried out work in my mother-in-law's garden and she found him through another satisfied customer.  His quotation was acceptable and he started work on Monday.


Three men turned up: the Boss was going to erect a fence and prepare the base for the new greenhouse; the worker's job was to prune the ivy and play with the chain saw and the youngest one was paid to look bored and hold the ladder. 

All was going well.  By Monday afternoon we had half a fence; half a laurel bush and we could see the brick work round the front door.


Hadn't expected it to look quite THAT naked but I thought I can now repaint the woodwork.  That's when I realised he had chopped back the honeysuckle I had grown round the door!!  Gutted!  I just keep telling myself it will grow back!

Tuesday morning two turned up ... the Boss was taking his sick dog to the vet.  By lunch time previously shaded plants were basking in sunshine as the top few feet came off the rowan and lilac trees.  Everything seemed fine so we nipped out for lunch ... mistake!  The van had gone when we returned and the neighbours were waiting ...

Apparently the young lad had been rude; they had failed to move the van when someone had wanted to turn their car round and the garden waste had been left "all over" the lane. 

To be honest there was some mess ... slightly more than I would have liked but a LOT less than there could have been!  It would take hours to tidy up every twig after cutting back so many branches so some mess was only to be expected.    

Wednesday morning no-one turned up!  Andy phoned the Boss.  The dog had died.  He was too upset to work so they will be back next Tuesday.

The sight of this beautiful Amaryllis cheered me up.  I put the house plants outside over summer and this one decided to bloom now instead of waiting until Christmas when it usually flowers.

The raspberries have been moved up to the allotment.  The rhubarb, currants and gooseberries are up there as well but I'm keeping the strawberries at home until the fruit cage is built.


  1. It certainly looks bear when you first have a big prune back, but then everything grows back with renewed vigour & looks twice as good as before!

  2. It is always a bit of a worry entrusting your home and garden to others isn't it? We have a tree that needs attention but Martyn insists he will do it himself even though iy will be a tricky job.

  3. You had me worried that something even worse had happened. Your front entrance looked great before, and looks nice and tidy now. What an interesting story about the workers, though.

  4. I love vines growing on homes, but I always wonder about the maintenance. I have had the same lesson about not leaving the hired help. Seems once you're out of sight, they suddenly do as they please - instead of how you please! However, I have been cutting back a lot in my own garden, and there are twigs EVERYWHERE! So, I understand how frustrating that job can be (and how untidy it makes everything look)!

  5. We have ivy growing up the side of the house - I planted it because I didn't like the colour of the bricks - it grew and grew and started to cover the roof. We have eventually got it to a reasonable level and just need to cut it back twice a year. Guess what - I wish I'd never planted the darn stuff - still, you live and learn. Sorry to hear about your honeysuckle hope it grows back nicely again.

  6. Cutting back the honeysuckle would have driven me crazy but it will grow back vigorously. It's so frustrating when you hire someone and they don't turn out to be as wonderful as you'd hoped for. Love that amaryllis. Such a rich red. :o)

  7. I love ivy in its place, but not on a house. It can be unforgiving to old, damaged mortar. I'm sorry you had disappointing contractors, but at least the wall is clear now. Here's to a rejuvenated and revitalised honeysuckle and your beautiful, but confused Amaryllis!