Friday 20 April 2012


Getting out in the garden and up close the the soil that you would normally have a birds eye view of, you are bound to see a few things you didn't notice before. For me it has to be the sheer number of various creepy crawly things that make their homes in the soil, plants and various nooks and crannies in the garden. I used to be quite squeamish about it, especially when I once pulled out a clump of weeds from the garden wall only to discover the biggest spider I have ever seen - eeek! But I'm toughening up and now don't mind most of the little beasties that go about their business amongst my delphiniums and lettuces as I know they are doing the garden a lot of good and that I need them in order to have a garden at all! But then there are the baddies, for me these are slugs and snails. I spent ages raising little seedlings in my grow house, nuturing them from seed to mini plantling only for them to be annihilated the moment I plant them out. Well, not for much longer! I have declared war - on slugs. My garden has now been nematoded!

Apparently, nematodes are a naturally occurring microscopic parasite that attacks slugs; they don't harm anything else and once they are in the soil they are there for about 6 weeks. They are effective in all weathers, whereas most slug pellets stop working once the rain comes (which is when you need them most). And they get at the majority of your slugs which are usually hiding under the soil. But as it's been raining since I applied it to my garden beds I haven't had much of a chance to go out and check if I'm still suffering from the scourge of the slug.
I'm aware that the nematode solution does sound a little bit too good to be true, so I'll let you know if I have a slug free garden if it ever stops raining! Crazily enough the hosepipe ban is still in place during this deluge!

The cats have been highly unimpressed with what they regard as a ridiculously leaky sky and even less impressed when the rain briefly turned to hail. So they have been quite content to be house cats for a few days. I took this advantage to take a few shots of Holly but after enduring my efforts for a little a while she then gave me rather a withering look, I wonder if Mario Testino has to put up with this kind of treatment...! My "portraits" of Holly came out a bit blurry as I had changed the shutter speed (or exposure I'm not entirely sure - such an amateur!) on my camera (it's a very grey day here) but evidently I need a tripod as I cannot hold my camera still enough for the time it takes the shutter to close.


  1. Your garden is looking good Charlotte, the brick-edged raised beds are a great idea! I also love that last picture of your living room. The weather is pretty awful at the moment, isn't it? Everything's growing like mad with the mixture of sunshine and showers, but it's too wet to get out and weed or cut the grass.

  2. Beautiful kitty and garden! It just reminded me that I have not planted my forget-me-not seeds (apparently I did forget them). I used to have them popping up at my prior home and I really do adore them! I am VERY curious about how effective these nematodes will be for you. We get tons of rain, as well as tons of snails and slugs and I can't seem to keep up with the slug pellets. Did you order them online?

    1. Hi Anna,

      Yes, I bought them from Amazon I only needed one pack, I guess that's one advantage of having a London garden everything is on a much smaller scale!

  3. Lovely photographs Charlotte, your garden is just gorgeous and looks very easy to manage. I am having a problem with horrible black spiders at the moment in our garden and around our windows!

  4. i loved your expression, 'ridiculously leaky sky'. cats - a law unto themselves. the nematode solution was of interest to me, as i've been trying to keep my little garden as organic as possible, so have shunned pellets. i find them unsightly and mostly useless at stopping the truly determined. as a result, my primroses et al have suffered greatly, but i do like the idea of using something that's naturally occurring to combat the pesky little blighters!

  5. I can whole heatedly appreciate your plight - I wish there was an 'if by magic' solution and a happy medium.

    Gorgeous pictures by the way and 'hello'

    Nina x

  6. What a pretty sitting room, it looks like a very calming colour.