sounds like you are doing a cottage garden,which I think is lovely.They use grow flowers that were native but lupins,hollyhocks,roses,lavender,naserstuims.mixing tall with short .can be very stunning.
I remember many years ago when I lived in the country ,(we had a massive garden) we had lots of air raid shelters and one big corragatted one that had a office and garage.This one was pulled down and my brother found after a little digging ,the remains of a horse and the cart ,which had belonged to the milkman many years before.
I have a few sumachs taken from suckers at my mothers home some 35 years ago.They are persisent in that the suckers and seeds pop up every where.you can prune them as they tend to get a bit straggly if thats the right word.they are beautifull but can get out of hand.
sounds a lovely place to be,you are very lucky and sound very happy.I find great joy in watching wild life and I know some things are not very nice to witness but it is the way nature is.
In my garden I plenty of feeders for the birds ,what ever they may be.Ihave plenty of coverage of bushes and trees for them to dart into with their off spring .This year there has been no end of differant birds coming to the table and certainly an increase in sparrows.I was sitting in the garden one day and looking up saw high flying in the sky a bird of prey ,right over the garden.the next day He was sitting on top of the Hawthorn giving me a clear view of him a sparrow Hawk..He didt catch anything while I was about and it would only be his dinner if he did,but he must of noticed extra activity in the garden.
it is benifical for wild life ,I have one in the garden and allsorts of birds use it and insects alike.The berries they love in winter and provide that much needed meal.I have also growen hawthorn from seed.
very grey and raining today,not enough to re-fill the water butts .glad i cut the grass yesterday.still trying to finish transplanting the wall flowers to which there are many.
I planted sweet peas in the ground and in tubs of the old fashion variety.The ones in pots looked well then began to fail,the the ones in the ground are doing well but not brillant .You have to keep picking the flowers which i have done and watered well and fed but this year is not doing at all well.
glad your turn it back to a garden,so many gardens are paved over even ones with large gardens.
dont try it.it looks like laural and the only laural you can use for cooking is the bayand thats useing the leaves all other laurals are poisonous.