Is the glass half full or half empty?

Today started off well. It was sunny and I got some essential jobs done in the house. Then I heard work going on out the back and I had a sense of foreboding. 

When I looked outside, I noticed some of the panels from the fence between my neighbour and her neighbour leaning against the fence between us. It seemed a strange place for the ‘landscapers’ to leave them, unless… They were going to be used by neighbour for something else!


My daughter has pointed out to me that we don’t actually know what that something else might be. It could conceivably have nothing to do with fences. However, I do know that a taller fence is on the cards, as my neighbour has broached the subject a few times.

Now, part of me would like a greater degree of privacy in the back garden – and the fence we currently have is getting shoddy. Also, I wouldn’t then need to worry about anything I am growing encroaching onto her land.

However, taller fences would mean less sunlight on the eastern side of the garden. I saw already today how the chives were in constant shade because of the fence panels laid directly above. I was hoping to put tomatoes next to them this summer but now I’m wondering if they would be alright in this position. And if they are not, where else am I going to put them?

Of course, once I know for sure what is going to happen, it will be easier to make the necessary decisions – and taller fences could be the start of something new and beautiful. So, let’s hope for the best!

About Helen

I have always been interesting in living a more environmentally friendly lifestyle and used to do what I could. Now, I have come to realise that we have reached such a point in terms of environmental degradation that it is more important - perhaps - to focus on building resilience. I therefore do as much as I can to reuse, grow my own and encourage a supportive community, for example. I also keep reading and learning all the time.
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12 Responses to Is the glass half full or half empty?

  1. andy1076 says:

    For me it will always be taller fences, I like my privacy and the comfort of knowing that no one is going to help themselves to my yard is nice πŸ™‚

  2. I hope you get an answer to this mystery, soon, Helen. Privacy is nice, but sun for growing is nice, too. Please keep us posted. Your garden is looking lovely.

    • Helen says:

      Thank you, Alys. I think the important thing now is to know one way or the other so I can decide where to plant the tomatoes (in the short term) and alter my plans (longer term).

      It is curious that my neighbour has only taken three panels – more would be needed for the full length of the garden. However, in a conversation we had once about extending the fence between us, she said she wondered if that might make the gardens feel very narrow. That is also my concern but it might feel less oppressive with fewer.

      • I think a traditional fence would make the gardens seem narrow. That’s been my experience when I gardened in narrow spaces. Perhaps the panels are for a different project entirely, like fencing in her bins or making a small shed. I think a great invention would be a virtual fence that allows in sun, light and air, but creates complete privacy. You could decide what image you want to see as well, like a meadow, a horse stable, the ocean, Benedict Cumberbatch or Idris Alba. πŸ˜‰

        • Helen says:

          I like the sound of your virtual fence 😁.

          The question of a real fence between my neighbour and I is a tough one. I had thought of a trellis so that things could grow up it but I don’t have the money to do the ground works myself. So I can’t really chose.

          However, the panels blew down in the wind so for the time being at least they have been moved to the back of the garden. Maybe she simply thought laying the panels against our current fence would give her a perspective on whether the real thing would make out gardens feel too narrow and she’s therefore already decided they do. Anyway, time will tell….

          • That’s a possibility. Can you ask her, or is that a no-no in your community?

          • Helen says:

            I would ask if we were in the garden at the same time but I haven’t seen her out at the same time as me. I think it would come across as quite aggressive to knock on her door.

          • Got it. Best of luck sorting it out.

          • Helen says:

            Thank you, Alys. I think I’m okay for the moment – the panels have stayed away from the fence and I have a feeling I’ll be able to let my tomatoes enjoy the sunshine this summer….. and in the meantime I can plan for future eventualities.

I love to read about your own experiences and any other feedback you have, so look forward to your comments below.

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