I think that making a garden here has been, and still is, one of the most enjoyable and satisfying things I have ever done. It’s a great mixture of learning by experience, or mistakes, creativity and discovery as you find the plants you like, and your tastes change as you learn more about the garden and its world.
Thirteen years ago, we moved here to the Hautes Pyrenees. And slowly but surely over the years, my old life began to fade away as life here took hold. And now? I trained over five years to gain a diploma in Garden Design for pleasure, and I plunged into the life of the garden, and sank completely, in a good way!
My garden is in a village, about an hour from the mountains, which we get a beautiful view of from our upstairs bedroom window. Well, we would, if the church spire wasn’t slap bang in the middle of the Pic du Midi. But no matter.
The ground is essentially the old riverbed of what is now the Adour River. and so it is chockful of giant washed river stones, and very free draining. Where it faces South, it bakes like a biscuit, but in the shade, and especially by the banks of the canal or ruisseau that flows at the bottom, it can offer more gentle conditions to shade-lovers. But, although the growing season is long, it is a tricky climate to master, and will always trip you up. Damp, sometimes very cold, winters and springs can give way to very dry, hot summers with occasional sharp and very wet storms that batter everything. So, plants can be a bit challenged as can humans.
It’s a delight and a constant source of renewal and enjoyment. I love it, and the point of the blog? Is to share some of the ups and downs, and hopefully, for readers to enjoy it and laugh with me. I do quite a lot of laughing, some of it hysterical! And the air is sometimes blue, but only in English.