Alasdair’s compost corner

Alasdair has been with us a year now. His one year birthday present is a new compost corner. For the real gardener, such as Alasdair, the joy of this surpasses any gift. It will be the nerve centre of his operation. He has struggled along without one, so I am touched by the delight this has afforded him and slightly guilty for not organising it before.

To be fair, we have been waiting for the right weather.  The boundary between us and our neighbours was thick, a double, no even treble row of camellia and rhododendron. All we needed to do was take the two front rows of plants away, pull them forward, leaving the final third as a boundary and create a large screened area. As you know, evergreen shrubs should be moved in the early Autumn while the soil is warm but they are not in active growth and as this is our first Autumn, here is my excuse.

Alasdair and Steph have planned that in this area there will be 3 compost bins, a bonfire area, a new mower shed and another for the shredder, positioned so that it no longer needs to be moved and wood can be shredded straight to a mulch pile where it can rot down. We can store pots, canes, and general paraphenanlia. To add to its charms, it is located just by the new gardener’s mess hut.

This was once a lovely stone apple store. To be fair, I have no pictures of it in the old days but the remaining stonework is nice and I assume the whole may once have been lovely. Like everything else here, it is on my renovation list. It will have a loo, tea and coffee facilities, shelves for garden reference books. Very importantly it will have work benches and vices for tool maintenance. My goodness, I am making it sound vast, but it is all quite compact: quite snug on a rainy day with everyone in there.

The outside of course, is most important too. Currently it is mostly block work, usually not attractive, but right now wreathed in Vitis vinifera and offset by rosy red crabs in front, it looks a picture (I can’t currently post a picture as I am away in Leeds having forgotten to take it. Alasdair will remedy that later today). Researching apple stores I have found many are thatched. I fancy that, as covered in moss, it will be like a hobbit house, blending into that damp corner near the fernery. Perhaps the block work could be hung with cedar shingle for the full hobbit look. Either way, the size won’t change. The footprint is right, looks perfect just there and I won’t mess with that winning formula.

So, I feel I may be on my way to fulfilling my duties as employer when this is all fixed up to the best of my ability. Then my gardeners will be in heaven.


The gardeners’ mess hut. Respectable when seen through these crab apples



The view from Alasdair’s compost corner
And a view to the North of the compost corner towards the house
The compost area covers a large neglected corner
One of the lovely rhododendron that we moved to create the compost’s boundary


In creating the new area, around the perimeter we now have this rather satisfying curved walkway lined with Hellebores





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