A bit of background

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2010 – before the house was built – facing east

This is my garden diary. It’s for me really, but you’re welcome to have a look. Just to explain, my partner and I bought a 4000 square metre (1 acre) plot of land in the foothills of the Parc National de l’Haut Languedoc in the south of France. We have built a contemporary house and now I am working to develop a Mediterranean garden. The soil is pure schist – shale with lots of bits of slate and rock. It was a vineyard until about four years ago, but now the grenache has gone and I am busy growing, planting and encouraging plants to replace the weeds and bare soil. It’s very dry in the summer with almost no rainfall between May and September. In winter ferocious winds blow from the Pyrenees to the west and the Black Mountains in the north.

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Panoramic shot Spring 2013 – facing west

The garden has bits which face in all directions, although the soil facing northwards is well nigh unworkable. The are no high structures and very little shade. So why did we buy this inhospitable chunk of land? Because it has wonderful views, uninterrupted by other buildings. So there you have it. This is a diary for my records, so it’s written to me. Please don’t feel put out. It’s good to know you’re there and interested. Please feel free to comment. I am an enthusiastic gardener who knows nothing about gardening in these conditions – but learning is a good thing don’t you think?