A Great Need

Our new house is situated at the top of a large new estate. So new, in fact, construction at the lower end of the site is ongoing, although Ein Cartref Bach is a relatively mature 7 years old. As a couple we have never owned a newish house before. In fact we have never lived in a house built after the end of the 19th century. ‘Til now. And to be honest, it is a curious experience. Towns and villages usually evolve over a period of time, this, in relation, popped up over night. Which must bring problems with it; creating a near instant community is tricky, it takes time.

The Estate does have many good points. These are the things that swayed our decision to buy. There are copious green spaces, with sections of ancient boundaries, hedgerows and matures trees left intact. Saplings have been planted and areas of scrubland left to provide havens for wildlife. The architecture is varied in size, form and materials, making for a varied aesthetic. There is a network of cyclepaths that lead to the school. As estates go, I would say it is a good one.

Yesterday I went for a lone explore, to nose about and try to glean what I could with a little entry level nosiness. I found a postbox, a prison, a wooded area, a birdtable, some children on Christmas bikes, a few dog walkers and a lot of front gardens that to be polite “could do better”. To be fair, there were a few exceptions that had made an effort, but mostly they were deserts of lawn or gravel or slate or, horror of horrors, artificial grass.

What is needed is some widespread horticultural-bombing. For some goading and cajouling and inspiration and damascene conversions. Perhaps not in that order. But whether that can be brought to fruition is another thing. I doubt whether garden maintenance is a priority for most of the residents who are, I am sure, busy folk. These people all have lovely homes, and take time and effort to furnish them beautifully. Their cars are washed and polished and preened regularly. But why not their front gardens? On the whole they are relatively small areas and a similiarly small amount of effort would greatly enhance not only their own, but their neighbours’ and visitors’ environment. This is not a criticism of their choices, but an acknowlegement that if they wanted it could be so much better.

So what to do? What I need is an ally.

19 thoughts on “A Great Need

  1. Make up a flier, with some examples of what you can do and rates, and you will probably get loads of jobs. If your front garden is a great example, neighbours hopefully will catch on. Is there a local gardening club?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think I will make a flyer up, as you suggest. Don’t think there is a gardening club, but there is a local facebook page so I might put something on there. Not sure they like advertising though, I can find a way around it, I’m sure. Thanks Sis x

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  2. I suspect your allies lie in the group of “a few exceptions that had made an effort”. Per haps you and the closest one to you could select someone between you, and offer to help them make a start. Maybe a couple big pots for one of the paved areas? Best of luck!

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  3. Little front gardens won’t necessarily give you much work individually but if you can get a few within walking distance together, there might be some scope. As others have said, a bit of publicity would be needed. I know someone who can help with getting some flyers made and they’re quite cheap. You could utilise your blog – maybe add in a section of static pages to advertise your wares – or get someone to host them for you (again I know….). You won’t know until you try. Good luck.

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  4. I hear you, Gill. We have the only front garden in our short street. It has been admired by some, but hasn’t inspired anyone to improve theirs and some front lawns don’t even have a solitary tree. I despair, but take comfort in the fact that once we get inside and engage with the back garden we could be anywhere, far away from suburbia.

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  5. An interesting, and clearly, heartfelt post and one I sympathise with.
    I agree with the previous comments, and hopefully as we head towards spring peoples thoughts will turn to their gardens. xx

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Where I lived in town, a neighbor next door to my next door neighbor complained that we grew fruits and vegetables in the gardens. She believed that they attracted vermin. Another neighbor complained that I tended to my own front garden. He believed that such behavior was inappropriate, and that I should have gotten a gardener to do it. Yet, another neighbor disapproved of my Buick parked at the curb, and insisted that I either replace with a car that he approved of, or park it in back. I would not be a good ally.

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