I really seem to be hitting my garden hard at the moment. Although I’ve had some frosts they have cleared quickly thanks to the glorious sea air that my south coast garden is exposed to, giving me no excuse to get out there.

There is a downside being close to the sea: the salt. Last week I checked over the ties than hold my wall trained wisteria, kiwi and fan-trained greengage, only to find that all they have suffered from salt corrosion.

I had used wire ties, covered with a thin casing of rubber, but the salty sea air soon caused the rubber to perish leaving the wire exposed to the elements.

Winter is a good month to check ties on climbers, most plants have lost their leaves leaving their main framework of branches exposed, offering easy access to the ties and wall supports. They can then be adjusted so they are not too tight or  too lose, risking damage to the plants. They can also be assessed for signs of wear and tear, and replaced if needed.

Having seen the effect of the sea air on the wire ties, I’m now replacing them with good old string and plastic options.

Another job done! At this rate, I may for the first time be getting on top of garden. It won’t last!