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A dilemma requiring tact!

(21 Posts)
Luckygirl Thu 23-May-19 18:10:32

There is a lovely guy up the road who helps me with the garden - he is very willing and kind and gets lots done - but his sense of aesthetics is a little lacking.

The most wonderful feature of our home is the wonderful view from pour windows and from the decking that surrounds the house. The decking is up on sort of stilts as the garden drops away fairly steeply after that, and there is a balcony rail all around.

I grew lots of sweet pea seeds which he kindly planted out in the scented bed below the balcony. My idea was that I would train them up and around the balcony rail.

I popped out top fetch my DGD from school today and came back and he had made a sort of ramshackle construction with peasticks for the sweet peas to grow up - and it extends about 2.5 - 3 feet above the balcony rail - goodbye beautiful view!!!

I do not want to offend this lovely man; but nor do I want to lose the lovely view!! There is no way the sweet peas are going to grow that high anyway as they are at least 4 feet below the balcony.

Help! - what do I do/say!!!???

FlexibleFriend Thu 23-May-19 18:16:59

Can you cut the canes off level with the handrail with a pair of loppers?

crazyH Thu 23-May-19 18:26:23

I wouldn't have liked that either. I can picture the sweet peas intertwining your balcony pretty.!!
It's difficult I know, but I think you will have to explain to him in the sweetest tones , in the nicest possible way, that the 'construction' was surplus to requirements, because the sweet pea would not grow that high anyway. You certainly don't want to upset him and lose his friendship.
Good luck !

Luckygirl Thu 23-May-19 18:30:33

I think I will need luck! I probably will lop them off a bit, but not quite sure what to say to him!

The irony is that I never pick up DGD on a Thursday, but arrangements broke down and I offered to step in - normally I would have been here to say STOP!!!

Sara65 Thu 23-May-19 18:31:34

Is he your gardener? Or just a kind friend?

midgey Thu 23-May-19 18:31:54

Could the construction be a ‘hazard’ to your GC? grin

eazybee Thu 23-May-19 18:33:21

Just ensure next time he does a job for you you leave very precise instructions or are there all the time.
He sounds to be worth cherishing.

Luckygirl Thu 23-May-19 18:42:15

I pay him - he is my gardener; and also a very kind man who is aware that I am shouldering a lot here and will pop down and put my bins out for example - I have never asked him to; he just likes to help.

I think the grandchild hazard idea is spot-on - brilliant!! I will blame it on my DDs!!! smile

Sara65 Thu 23-May-19 18:51:35

He sound wonderful, I’d just put up with it I think

EllanVannin Thu 23-May-19 18:56:48

Just say to him " I hope you don't mind but I've shortened the canes as they block the view ". I'm sure he'll get the gist.

GabriellaG54 Thu 23-May-19 19:09:08

Well, Luckygirl I'd just say that he's done a grand job but the canes are taller than you would like and it would please you if he would cut them to the height of the rails do you can appreciate the views.
If you don't give clear guidance then people do as they think best.
He's not a mind reader.

GabriellaG54 Thu 23-May-19 19:09:34

do so

Avor2 Thu 23-May-19 19:10:34

He is a friend but you do pay him so you are entitled to let him know your concerns, I am sure he will understand. Good luck xx

BradfordLass72 Fri 24-May-19 12:34:12

I wouldn't have thought it offensive to say kindly, 'Can we do it this way? I rather like my view'
Especially if he's willing to learn what you want him to do, most people are.

mosaicwarts Fri 24-May-19 12:38:56

Pea canes make me shiver - as a child I was 'riding' one as a horse, fell, and it nearly pierced my jugular. Still have the scar all these years later.

Luckygirl Fri 24-May-19 13:28:31

GabriellaG54 - I know he's not a mind reader!!! I happened to have popped out when he did it and had no reason to imagine he might do this - it had never been mentioned! It appeared out of the blue! I had not asked him to do it.

merlotgran Fri 24-May-19 13:45:03

I'd pile on the positive comments first and wait until the sweet peas get going before suggesting the pea sticks might need cutting back to preserve the view. With a bit of luck he'll agree with you.

ditzyme Fri 24-May-19 13:49:47

A polite comment over a cup of coffee, saying how you would prefer it if the canes were shorter as you wanted to train the sweet peas along the balcony. Though perhaps that's a discussion you should have had before he planted the canes?

Luckygirl Fri 24-May-19 14:38:26

We did have the discussion - but he has a tendency to forget things! In every other way he is a great asset.

sodapop Fri 24-May-19 15:17:08

I agree with Gabriella say it how it is and be clear. Trying too hard to be tactful can muddy the waters.

3dognight Fri 24-May-19 15:24:09

Bless him. He sounds lovely.

Can the construction 'blow down' in the next summer storm?