Fifth Excerpt – Winegrower

In June of 2005 Jennie’s father Michael ( Mick ) Flower died aged 89 yrs, after a short illness. At that time we had no proper outdoor living area where we could get away from the brutish nor’ wester. Jennie was willing to use part of her inheritance from Mick’s estate, which I administered, towards the creation of a professionally designed and built sheltered courtyard. It was positioned immediately in front of the downstairs sitting room which had full length glass sliding doors to the outside. The layout included large concrete pavers immediately along the front of the opening doors, followed by an area of mixed gravels, with a low concrete strip step-up to a ready- lawn area. A low teucrium hedge separated the lawn from a small vegetable garden at the northern end of the courtyard. In the garden we planted raspberry canes, a crab-apple tree, a bay tree, and everyday vegetables. The courtyard was defined by fixed timber trellising and plantings on the west and northern sides and black iron trellising with a gate on the eastern side. We planted 6 Manzanillo olive trees within the courtyard on the west side and installed 3 substantial concrete planter boxes planted with lenisaria hedging along the eastern side. There was also a concrete water feature in the gravel area with a small pump- operated fountain. Once all the plantings were established the courtyard proved to be a wonderful private sanctuary where we could relax and entertain friends and family. We derived a huge amount of pleasure from using this space: Jennie always considered it money well spent. Mick would have approved of what we had created.


BARRY JOHNS ( aka Le Vigneron )