This corner of The Old Cottage Garden has been a focus of activity lately, with a collection of strawberry plants in terracotta pots being added to the existing planting of ancient varieties of Rose. The rose in flower on the left of the photo is The White Rose of York, Rosa gallica alba, and is still one of the great garden roses of all time.
Our aim here is to create an area that ultimately will be very low maintenance. Thickly applied gravel will control weeds and a timed irrigation system to the strawberry pots and to the nearby table grapes will avoid the need for twice daily watering during the heat of summer.
However, until the gravel is put in place the area will need very consistent attention to weed control as a huge number of seeds remain in the soil in this area and these particular weeds can grow from germination to seed-set in less than a fortnight!