Decoration, Guest Posts, Lou C

Nosy Neighbours

Now maybe it’s just me, but I do like a certain amount of privacy in the garden. Having established that we are somewhat of a novelty in the locality (after all, we love to garden), we know that many of our antics create a certain amount of curtain twitching and more than a few passing comments — not least the regular return trips from the garden centre with the car packed to the rafters with yet more plants.

There have also been certain garden mishaps I’d rather forget, like the time I tumbled down our (then grassy) slope after losing my balance whilst trying to insert a solar light spike in our rock-hard clay soil or when I suffered from pins and needles in both feet after too much crouching down as I weeded. Let’s just say that John Cleese and his Ministry of Silly Walks had nothing on me for nearly five minutes.
The newly painted fence in the garden
As part of a new build development, we are overlooked on all sides, and all sides are not more than a good stone’s throw from us (not that I’ve ever checked in practice of course!). It doesn’t help that our garden is on an incline and our patio (well, that’s what we like to call it, although I think that I might find a photo of it under the dictionary definition of a handkerchief) sits at the top, for all to see.

Maybe I’m just kidding myself – after all, are neighbours really that nosy and am I really that interesting (silly walks and roly polys aside of course)? I’m sure neither is the case but this does nothing to dampen my desire for a little more privacy, particularly when my next door neighbour (unassuming, friendly and not allergic to a few plants herself) combats her slope by having her garden landscaped into levels. This means that when she stands on her patio, she is now waist height with the top of our fence, in manner of the Jolly Green Giant and it now feels like Lilliput on this side of the fence.  In fairness, she does try and announce her presence with a well placed “ahem” or “knock, knock”, should she want our attention, which is usually quite rare. However, it can be a little disconcerting to know that the view from her conservatory window and garden leads straight over the fence into our patio and garden room!
Pergola with hanging baskets in the garden
Building a pergola attached to the house has helped a little and has created a little more privacy overhead, but this still doesn’t solve the whole problem. After a lot of negotiating (read: begging), my husband agreed to a trellis screen carefully placed at the top of the rockery which solved the problem of the neighbours to the back of us having a direct view of the patio. However, this still leaves the issue of my next door neighbour’s view.
A garden trellis
Not one to be deterred, I have taken the opportunity to purchase several more well placed clematis and once they are settled (and not slug food) they may hopefully blur the boundaries a little. However, they will not reach the dizzy heights needed to screen my neighbour’s view without something to attach themselves to and it seems a little extreme to use even more trellis screening, even if it is attached to the fence. We have for now decided that we are on good enough terms with our neighbour to leave things as they are.
Neighbour's red setter dog
Unfortunately the red-headed lodger who has recently moved in has none of the tact and diplomacy of her landlady. In fact, she loves nothing better than spending the greater part of a day peering over the fence into our garden and she’s not discreet about it! Even catching her on camera didn’t seem to deter her enthusiasm although it soon became clear that she was particularly enamoured with our furry five.
Red setter dog looking over fence
It does at first feel quite disconcerting, knowing we are being watched but it is quite a novelty knowing that it is by a rather large red setter and it certainly adds to the Lilliputian effect! I just hope the fence holds because I’ve seen the devastation she has wreaked on her side of the fence and there’s a lot more to play with here.

The whole business has left me wondering though, how do other people deal with privacy in an overlooked garden, and how much does it matter?

Lou C

Decoration

Primrose Loves Pinterest!

We’ve gone mad for Pinterest – it’s such a fabulous way to organize your ideas, plan your projects, or just look at loads of neat and pretty things. Our favourite things to pin are great animal & flower photos, gardening tips, and inspiring gardens. We’ve got boards for inspirational gardens, indoor gardens, garden wildlife, top tips and more!

PrimroseUK's Pinterest Garden Wildlife board

If you’re on Pinterest, check us out! And if you’re not on it yet, just leave us a comment with your email address and we’d be happy to send you an invite. What’s Pinterest, you ask? Pinterest describes itself as a virtual pinboard – instead of tearing pictures out of magazines, you can ‘pin’ photos from any website, or ‘re-pin’ images from others. It’s great for inspiration and there’s already loads of gardeners participating! Give it a go, but be careful… it can be addictive!

Bird Baths, Celebrations And Holidays, Chimeneas, Clocks, Decoration, Gardening, Lighting, Mothers' Day, Solar Lighting

Show Your Appreciation This Mothers’ Day

A big day is coming up – the day when men and women across the country will be spending their time with good old Mum, showing their appreciation for the woman who took care of them throughout their childhood and beyond.

If you are looking for a special gift to show your mother how much she means to you, Primrose has lots of fantastic gift ideas to give you some inspiration!

Why not give her a gift that will light up the fresh, spring sky, with some beautiful solar lights? From path markers to guide your way through the garden, to sparkling light strings to brighten up any tree, these delightful solar lights are eco-friendly, cost nothing to run and would make an ideal gift!

If your mum is a keen gardener, consider buying a grow kit so she can grow her own produce – our herb kits sit neatly on the window sill and come with everything needed to grow a range of fresh herbs such as parsley and basil, perfect for use in everyday cooking. Or let her try growing her own delicious strawberries with a strawberry barrel kit! There is a lot of fresh produce you can grow yourself, from tomatoes and herbs, to potatoes and beans, all easy to grow, tasty and satisfying!

And why not cook those home-grown potatoes and tomatoes, along with some burgers, sausages and kebabs, on the barbecue, or for something a bit different, consider grilling them over the fire in a chiminea! Chimineas are both useful and decorative garden features – use one for warmth and cooking on sultry summer evenings.

A garden clock is a fantastic gift idea – these smart, practical items come in a range of styles and will look elegant fixed to any wall. Some even light up in the evening so it is easy to read no matter what time of day.

If you know your mum is a fan of nature and wildlife, why not help her get the most from her garden and both attract and protect the local animals? A bird bath or bird house is a great way to entice a wide variety of birds to the garden, while a bee box or hedgehog house will provide sanctuary for some of the UK’s more endangered species.

Clocks, Decoration, Heated Clothing

Christmas Inspiration

Well, it’s already 12th December! Half way through the month ‘til Christmas, eek! We all know someone who is particularly difficult to buy presents for – either they don’t want anything, or they’re fussy about what they get or they’re one of those lucky people who seem to already have everything… If you’re stuck for inspiration this Christmas, here are a few gift ideas:

Heated Clothing – Gloves, Socks, Jackets and More

Desperately needed at this time of year, our range of heated clothing will keep you even warmer than standard scarves and gloves thanks to the additional battery-powered heating elements. Stay toasty this winter whatever the weather with heated gloves, scarves, insoles, socks, gilets, jackets, leg warmers and much more!

LED Candles

LED battery candles are a smart alternative to traditional candles with real flames. They flicker like real candles but are flameless and completely safe. Attractive and long-lasting, they’re great value for money and can be placed anywhere. These practical candles come in a multitude of styles and functions, look great and create a wonderful atmosphere. I personally have a set of Two LED Colour Changing Real Wax Candles With Remote Control which sit on a bookshelf, posing no threat to my books, and I have great fun picking colours with the remote control!

Garden Clocks

Practical and attractive, a garden clock is an ideal present. With a range of designs, including wall clocks and bracket mounted, double faced clocks, our beautiful clocks are easy to read and make a delightful gift.

Meerkat Ornaments

Meerkats are overwhelmingly popular, thanks to the TV advert – and now you can fill your home and garden with the cheeky chappies! If you know someone who’s tickled pink by the cute critters, make them laugh this Christmas with an adorable meerkat ornament – from meekats with solar lights (which really work!) and golfing meerkats, to James Bond Meerkat and Meerkat planters, we have the one for you!

Water Features

I know what you’re thinking – water features are for summer, not winter! But now is a great time to grab yourself a bargain and many features can be used both indoors and out, so there’s no reason why you can’t enjoy one in your home during the colder months and move it outside if you wish once spring rolls around. Relaxing to the gentle sound of trickling water is a great way to de-stress after the hustle and bustle of Christmas!