Summer In a Greek Garden

Glorious garden days of summer
Glorious garden days of summer


We are so lucky to live in Greece with its warm, sunny climate which allows us to more or less live outdoors in the garden through spring, summer and well into the autumn, even on sunny mornings in winter, I have my coffee outside.


The back garden
The back garden

MGG (My Greek God) and I have put  much hard work into our garden in the twenty two years that we have lived in this house, it has all been worth it.

It hasn't all been smooth going, we have very different ideas on gardening and how a garden should look.

 I prefer the more natural, flowing style, MGG likes straight orderly lines, every thing neat and tidy, pruned to within an inch of it's life.(He has been known to use a chain saw for this!)

 MGG likes grass...square, manicured lawns.

I don't, a lawn is just not Greek!



Front lawn
MGG's front lawn


We solved the disagreement problem by allotting the front, "posh", showy garden to the care and upkeep of MGG.



Rockery
Rockery


I inherited the back garden.

The first thing to go was the lawn, to be replaced with crazy paving, the stone, karystos was used, a kind of slate named after the place on the island of Evia, from where it originates.

Then out came the "squared up" hedges.

Because of the warm weather, I had the idea that anything can grow here, it can't!
 After much wasted time and money I came to my senses ..we are in Greece, plant Greek stuff!

In went pink and white oleander, nearly impossible to kill off !

 Jasmine, the smell in the evenings is heavenly, large Greek urns, overflowing with plumbago, the flowers of which are rather sticky with tiny hook-like things, these stick to the dogs a treat, they become covered and then trail it all through the house!


Plumbago
Plumbago



Back garden
Hugo in the back garden

Karysto stone paving and Hugo.


A little piece of paradise
A little piece of paradise 


Here and there were placed the odd Greek urn.


Greek urn
Greek urn


Urn with a sleeping angel placed atop, pebbles brought home from the beach.



White rose for Yorkshire
White rose for Yorkshire



In 2004 I had planted a plum stone and a fig sapling sprouted from nowhere, they grew splendidly.

We now have an abundance of figs and plums each year.

The plum jam I have made is fabulous, pure, no additives, absolutely delicious, enough to last a lifetime!


As the Olympic games were held in Greece in 2004 I named them "Olympic Plum" and "Olympic Fig"!



Homegrown plums
Homegrown plums



Homegrown figs
Homegrown figs

Every year I grow basil with which I make Capri salad, tomato, mozzarella cheese, olive oil and sprinkled with fresh basil.

 It is quite possible that I eat this nearly every day of the summer!

 I have mint that had to be transplanted to a pot because it was beginning to take over the whole garden, at the front, MGG has rosemary.


My Daughter Nais has started  a "Memory tree".

 On her visits to the Greek islands she buys something to hang in the tree. to remind her of the good times she had there.

So far she has collected a ceramic fish from Syros, a porcelain donkey from Paros, a sailing boat from Kimolos, a wooden top from Sifnos and a sea horse from Spetses.

What a lovely idea!



Greek Island souvenirs
Greek Island Souvenirs - Nais;s Memory Tree

A sad job in the Garden was burying first, our boxer dog, Amos, and then Ziggy, a black Alsatian.

They are buried in a secluded corner of the front garden, where made them sweet little graves.

A couple of years later my friend C's dog Daisy died, as C lives in an apartment Daisy is buried in our garden next to her two dear friends.


In memory of dogs
In memory of dogs

We have a few visitors now and again, we had a fairly large snake in our yucca tree, it was there for a couple of days, the yucca is huge, I planted it as a small indoor pot plant twenty years ago.

Sparrows gather there which is probably what kept the snake there.



Huge yucca tree
Huge yucca tree

We  also had  a lot of rats after one especially wet winter, they ate the wiring of my dishwasher...twice!

 Mosquitoes but not too many, when night falls the bats come out, some of them rather low-flying!

A large frog or toad, I am not up on amphibians, has lived for years in the rockery at the front.


Toad
Mr Toad
My granddaughter Mel loves to come to our garden, where we have all the usual kids paraphernalia.

She helps MGG with the gardening, I fear she may be more of a hindrance.



Summer fun
Summer fun
Mel keeping cool


Large inflatable pool
One two three four five, once I caught a fish alive


Watering the plants
Watering the plants

Helping Grandpa



My two lovelies
My two lovelies



So, I have created my sanctuary, my time, when not on the beach, is spent here, alone just sitting enjoying the tranquillity or having fun with my family.

As we become older we appreciate the simpler things.

 How better to spend our time, than having a meal together, or romantic evenings in the garden, just the two of us, MGG and I,  with a bottle of wine, listening to music.

We are grateful.

TV Greek style
TV Greek style

Yes.we even watch TV outdoors!


Greek family lunch
Greek family lunch


Lunch al fresco
Lunch al fresco

Spaghetti Puttanesca




Pizza
Sharing a pizza

Oh, those lazy, hazy days of summer.


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