Nov 142013
 
Conservatory

Bath

Along with a new house and garden, I have acquired a conservatory. Some people have been slightly derogatory about its plasticky look but I love it. On a sunny autumn day it gets distinctly toasty and there’s no nicer place to sit eating breakfast or working. On a dull day it gives a double hit of daylight and chlorophyll, without having to step outside.

The space only covers about 2.5m x 2.5m, but it’s a bottomless pit as far as plants are concerned. It already contains around 20 plants, but looks empty. The effect I’m going for is Andie MacDowell’s roof terrace in Green Card – so consider this the ‘before’ shot.

Needless to say, as with most conservatories, fluctuation in temperature is an issue. At the moment it’s about 10 degrees warmer inside than out, but as night falls, the temperature plummets. It’s still not as cold as outdoors, but it’s pretty chilly. I’m not planning on heating it – it costs enough to heat the rest of the house – so I’m making do with plants that can tolerate temperatures down to about 7 degrees. In effect, I am creating a winter garden. 

So far, I’m overwintering a few plants for friends – two bananas, a fuchsia and a pelargonium. I’ve bought a lemon tree (Citrus x limon ‘Meyer’, which tolerates cooler temperatures), a camellia that should flower earlier as it’s under cover, and some succulents. Paperwhites, hyacinths and minature daffs are waiting in the wings and next spring I’ll start off some seeds in it. It will probably be largely emptied out for summer as it will get pretty hot, but next autumn I’ll bring in all the tender plants that I’ll no doubt have acquired by then.

So this time next year I should be giving Andie MacDowell run for her money. In the meantime the rays of sunshine and handy vantage points are being appreciated by my new four-legged friend…

Weds

  10 Responses to “My conservatory”

  1. A winter garden? Will Bernie Clifton be appearing in panto? I can’t wait to meet your kitty!

  2. Well I think it looks pretty good already! I look forward to seeing how it progresses. I’d love a conservatory.

  3. Hey it looks terrific – are you now branching into the world of interiors? Worse case scenario is that you might get some sponsorship from Jacksons fencing. Looking forward to seeing it and meeting pussy cat soon!

  4. Your conservatory is looking really lovely with all the greenery. I can imagine you sat there every morning (post 11am of course) with a full breakfast spread laid out, scanning The Guardian whilst little four legged friend is peeing in one of your flower pots…

  5. Looks really lovely, how about a few fairy lights around it at Christmas? Puss looks content in her new home. Enjoy your new obsession….

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