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The garden in summer
The garden in autumn
The garden in winter
Garden history

I start writing this article the 18th of march; due to the calendar year spring has not begun, but particularly today we are having a tipical spring weather here in Madrid. The sun is nice and warm and the plants are already awakening form their winter lethargy.

What can I say about spring, without any doubt the most beautiful season of the year, when the gardens have their best aspect showing all kind of fresh and assorted colors; birds are again populating the trees and starting to intone their songs.

The lawn, after fertilizing it with plentiful organic material three weeks ago, is now starting to grow with great vigour covering the garden in a clear and intense green. Some of the trees, like the plum trees, already show their new foliage, others start to sprout and will have a dense crown in a few weeks.

Now is the moment to plant new flower beds, to sow those lawn zones which suffered during winter or didn't grow well after the sowing realized in autumn. It is also time to prune the pyracantha hedges; in the case of mine it was necessary to clean the plants thoroughly and remove a lot of dead plants which apparently didn't receive enough water receive last summmer. In the gaps left, I planted young plants which will be filling up the empty spaces in the next years.

In the next weeks I will move outside all those bonsais which passed the winter inside the house and realize all the repotting, structural pruning and other tipical tasks of this season. Spring is probably the moment of the year when most work has to be done in the garden and on the bonsais, but it is also the most satisfying, as the results can be seen in a few weeks of time.

A few days ago withered the flowers of the almond tree and soon the pear tree will start to flower. As I forgot to shoot some pictures of the almond tree, I promise to at least show you the flowering of the pear tree and other plants blooming which are appearing all over the garden.

This is the first spring I enjoy in this new garden, as we moved to this house last year when spring was already reaching its end, so I missed a lot of details which I enjoy this year. I am also finishing the tasks that have to be realized in this season as there are the structural pruning of plants and hedges, the contribution of organic material to the lawn, flower beds and trees, the new plantings y re-sowing of extense lawn areas. Now the lawn is starting to come out in that areas which I protected of the birds with improvised scarecrows made of bamboo stacks and white cardboards moved by the wind.

The area of the garden to which I dedicated most time this year is the flower bed situated at the right side of the garden, just where the terrace finishes. As it had too few soil which was additionally very saturated of the roots of the nearby arizonica hedge, I had to transport quite a lot of soil and organic material from the vegetable garden zone to this section (about a cubic meter) to be able to plant new plants. This way I raised the terrain about 20 centimetres, enough to guarantee that the plants would take root in a proper way.

I have planted quite a lot of different species, some evergreens, some deciduous, some flowering to guarantee an always spectacular flower bed during the whole year. Some of the planted species are: cotoneaster, false cherry, japanese maple aso. I have complemented the planting with two brown coloured rocks.

This year I will have to realize a thourough cleaning of the fishpond as the continuous accumulation of leafs, branches aso. have formed a layer of rotten organic material on the pond bed. This is not good for the fish and also obscures the water. Also a great amount of seaweed needs to be removed which in winter was useful as a refuge for the fish but now have to be reduced in a drastic way as they obstruct the proper oxygenation of the water.

I will probably take the opportunity to redo the pond bed placing a special mat on the ground which will on one hand retain the river rocks and on the other, form a proper base for plantings I plan to plant this year, as there are water lilies and papyrus.

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Spring 2004

These photos where taken in spring 2004, specifically in mid april. This year we have a very lovely spring after a winter generous in rain and snow.

Now the garden is recovering its vitality in the form of fresh colours in different tonalities and wakes up from the winter lethargy during which the colors are greys and dull tonalities of green. All over the garden turn up different flowers which sprout of the bulbs burried in autumn and on the spring flowering hedges.

This year I have detected a watering problem on the pyracantha hedge, some of the plants dried out. I replaced them with young plantings.

The next two photos illustrate other two flower details in different colours as an example of the diversity of flower species present in the garden.