Six on Saturday 26/09/20

There’s been a very chilly feel to the air this week and the night-time temperature in the glasshouse has been down in single figures most nights. The forecast rain failed to materialise, bar a few light showers and I am still doing quite a lot of watering. Leaves are starting to change colour, although some trees seem to be dropping their leaves before any change has happened – stress I suppose. My garden (the Non-Gardener insists that it’s nothing to do with him 🤣) is definitely in autumn mode now.

  • I have longed to visit Knoll Garden in Dorset and yesterday finally got there. It’s a naturalistic garden renowned for its use of grasses and hardy perennials, and also has some lovely trees and shrubs. It is such a peaceful and relaxing garden and I loved every bit of it. Oh, and there’s a nursery as well! Here’s a little taster
The Dragon Garden – from the legend of St Dunstan
Looking across the Lower Lawn
  • Back to my garden now. I planted Ricinus communis seeds back in the spring and they have all done well though some are a bit wind battered. I planted three quite close together at the back of the house. The soil is not very deep here and I thought it would restrict their height and that they would branch and grow together. They didn’t listen when I told them my plan and are now approaching eight feet tall and haven’t branched at all. Being so tall they ended up nearly horizontal in the high winds a couple of weeks ago, hence the ugly canes. They are a talking point though, even if completely out of scale.
Ricinus communis ‘Impala’
  • Several Clematis have been encouraged back into growth with the recent warmth, producing small clusters of flowers. I chose this one as I love the perfect points on each petal (technically they have sepals I think).
Clematis ‘Samaritan Jo’
  • The Michaelmas Daisies continue to flower
Symphyotrichum novae-angliae ‘St Michael’s’
Symphyotrichum novi-belgii ‘Flamingo’ – a bit weather-beaten!
  • A major feature of autumn are the seed heads and some of the Clematis ones are very attractive. This is a seed grown herbaceous variety.
Clematis integrifolia
  • I bought a few new (to me) grasses yesterday but an existing Miscanthus is looking really good at the moment. I bought it many years ago and it has slowly clumped up to make a beautiful, very well behaved plant at the back of the border.
Miscanthus ‘Silberfeder’

The weather looks fair for the weekend and I have quite a few plants to find homes for so I’m planning a weekend at home in the garden. Thank you for reading my Six and don’t forget to read how the seasons are affecting other Sixers’ gardens at https://thepropgatorblog.wordpress.com/

Six on Saturday 19/09/20

Rain seems a very distant memory and parts of the garden are showing signs of drought. It’s definitely been a year of all or nothing. The solar powered drip-watering systems have kept the glasshouse and the pots and tubs in good condition without a lot of supplementary watering being needed but some herbaceous plants in the borders are going over very quickly now. The forecast is for some rain next week but it doesn’t look to be any amount so I’ve filled the water butts with the hose as the watering systems run from them, not the mains. Despite the lack of water there is still a lot of colour in the garden so without further ado here is this weeks Six on Saturday from my garden.

  • I have a few different Salvias, some in pots and some in the ground. ‘Hotlips’ is currently going for border domination but the flowers are mostly plain white at the moment and I think this is going to be its last season in the garden. I’m sure I can make better use of the space. However, Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’ is looking really good (better than it looks in the picture) and is very hardy.
Salvia guaranitica ‘Black and Blue’ photobombed by Dahlia ‘White Onesta’

Also looking good is Salvia greggii ‘Strawberries and Cream’ in a pot on the patio.

Salvia greggi i ‘Strawberries and Cream’
  • In the same border as S. ‘Black and Blue’ is an obelisk with Clematis ‘Black Tea’ and C. Dr ‘Ruppel’. ‘Black Tea’ has flowered on and off but ‘Dr Ruppel’ hasn’t had a single flower until now.
Clematis ‘Dr Ruppel’
  • It’s been another bad year for me and Dahlias. I planted most of them in the borders and there’s too many hiding places for slugs and snails. However, D. ‘Honka Fragile’ has finally flowered. It’s just a shame that there’s virtually no leaves beneath! The canes were put in back when I thought the plant would actually grow upwards. I think I’m going to block plant the Dahlias next year. I used to do this and had a much better display then.
Dahlia ‘Honka Fragile’
  • I’ve grown Tricyrtis formosana for a couple of years. The SnS are very attracted to it as it comes into growth but it’s one of those plants that quietly sits in the corner then you suddenly notice that it’s flowering.
Tricyrtis formosana
  • I would like to grow more Hylotelephiums and was hoping to get some at the plant fair at Malvern last Saturday. Sadly, the only one I could see there was ‘Autumn Joy’, which I already have. The variety below is taller than ‘Autumn Joy’ and has larger individual flowers.
Hylotelephium ‘Red Globe’
as above plus four bees
  • Another sure sign of autumn is the appearance of Hesperantha (I prefer Schizostylis) flowers. This is the brightest variety I have.
Hesperantha coccinea

A bit more subtle is ‘Mrs Hegarty’

H. coccinea ‘Mrs Hegarty’

I’m getting itchy fingers! I want to start moving plants, redesigning areas, planting bulbs and all of the other fun things. It’s just a little bit early yet…..

Have a great weekend and enjoy reading all of the other Sixes at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/

Six on Saturday 12/09/20

Another calm week weather-wise but not so much time spent in the garden. Not sure why not. Anyway, I’ve been potting up rooted cuttings from the Hydropod and have put some more Penstemon cuttings in there. Cuttings seem to be developing good roots within about 10 days on the whole. To propagate plants, like sowing seeds, is a need I feel very strongly. I haven’t a clue what I’ll do with all of the resulting plants but that doesn’t matter. However, none of the plants in this weeks Six seem to need any help with propagation, they are all strong growers.

  • While a lot of the plants in my long border have passed their peak and are declining others are just coming into their own. I have several Michaelmas Daisies, most of which have a label by them with their name on. Sadly, this one seems to have lost his. Does anyone recognise it? It grows to about four feet tall and has long, slightly glossy leaves. The flowers are not as large as a lot of other Asters/Symphyotrichum. I grow mostly the novae-angliae varieties as they aren’t so prone to mildew.
Symphyotrichum ?
  • I am not a huge fan of most Solidago varieties but saw S. rugosa ‘Fireworks’ with the Michaelmas Daisies at Picton Garden a few years ago and liked its delicacy. I grow it next to the above daisy but have them the wrong way around as the Solidago is the taller but is in front. A(nother) job for the autumn sort through.
  • Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’ is a very strong growing perennial sunflower. It needs no staking and usually grows to about six feet. Like many perennials this year it is taller than usual. The foliage is distinctly average but the flowers are a lovely soft yellow and go on for weeks and weeks, especially with some deadheading.
Helianthus ‘Lemon Queen’
  • To the left of the Helianthus is another plant that I bought on my visit to Picton Garden, Persicaria ‘Indian Summer’. It seems to be going for border domination this year and I am debating whether to remove it. I’m sure that there are better varieties although I don’t think any Persicarias are known for their reluctance to grow!
Persicaria ‘Indian Summer’
  • Another recent (last year) arrival the border is Bidens ferulifolia (I think). The delicate leaves and light airy flowers belie its rapidly spreading habit. It’s a keeper though.
Bidens ferulifolia
  • Anemone hupehensis ‘Hadspen Abundance’ is definitely abundant. The flowers are a dark pink and consist of three larger and two smaller petals (or are they tepals? I must check).
Anemone hupehensis ‘Hadspen Abundance’

I love the exuberance of this weeks plants but I’ll try to find some more genteel plants for next weeks Six 😂.

Have a great weekend and don’t forget to look at all the other Sixes at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/

Six on Saturday 05/09/20

For a change it’s been a very calm week weather-wise and the garden has appreciated the rest. The season has definitely changed here with autumn well under way. It must be autumn as the bulbs have started arriving! Anyway, here’s this weeks mixed season Six.

  • I’ve grown Salvia uliginosa for a few years and it normally reaches four to five feet high. This year, along with many other herbaceous plants, it has grown taller than usual and is currently around seven feet high! Being so tall it was badly blown by the recent storms and is looking a little unkempt.
Salvia uliginosa
  • After seeing Agastache on other Sixes last year I couldn’t understand why I’d never grown it. I bought a young plant late last summer, took a couple of cuttings and overwintered the original plant in the cold frame. It has been flowering for weeks and weeks and I keep thinking I’ll include it next week, then next week. Ideally, it should have had it’s moment here a couple of weeks ago as it is going over a bit. Definitely a keeper though.
Agastache ‘Crazy Fortune”

Only one of the cuttings made it through the winter but it isn’t variegated any more!

  • I grow a lot of Fuchsias, mainly half-hardy ones that spend the winter under glass. Having battled with Capsid Bug for the last couple of years the plants have had a rest from those pests this year and have been looking great. Sadly, Fuchsia Gall Mite has really taken hold in the last month and while cutting the stems back removes the affected parts it also means that the Fuchsias have no flowers. This is a problem that has been growing over the last few years and I think I’m going to have to stop growing them for a few years, but what to replace them with? A newer Fuchsia addition that hasn’t been affected is ‘Lechlade Gordon’. It has flowered well and the seed pods are very attractive. And the colour matches the turning leaves of the Cobaea behind.
  • The grasses come into their own at this time of year adding a lot of movement in the borders. Chasmanthium latifolium is commonly known as Sea Oats and has beautiful, flattened flower spikes. They don’t show very well here as it was a bit windy. I’m sure it will feature again.
Chasmanthium latifolium
  • The Hylotelephiums are starting to flower and every one is a bee magnet (apart from when taking photographs)
Hylotelephium telephium ‘Purple Emperor’
  • The plants I really look forward to in the autumn are the Michaelmas Daisies. I visited the National Collection at Picton Garden/Old Court Nurseries near Malvern a couple of years ago and added a few plants to my garden 🤣. One of the first to flower is Aster amellus ‘King George’.
Aster amellus ‘King George’

The weather looks fair here for the weekend and my plan is to go out there with pencil and paper and start to list plants to go, plants to move, where I might squeeze some bulbs in etc. Sounds a good plan but I’m sure I’ll get distracted by weeds, dead-heading, cuttings to take. The list is, thank goodness, endless.

Have a great weekend, whatever you are doing and don’t forget to make time to check in with our leader at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/

Six on Saturday 29/08/20

Two storms and a lot of rain have taken their toll on the garden over the last couple of weeks and there’s a lot of sorting out to do this weekend. Every time I went out to take some pictures yesterday it seemed to pour with rain so this mornings pictures show a lovely sunny garden.

  • It seems sad in a way but summer has definitely ended in the garden but the richer colours of autumn are slowly taking over.’Emily Mackenzie’ is a later flowering Crocosmia, isn’t too rampant , isn’t too tall so doesn’t flop over and is one of my favourites. I love the dark markings inside the flower. With lots of time at home at the start of the herbaceous growing season I was able to put lots of stakes in the border and the plants have, on the whole, stood up to the recent weather well
C. ‘Emily Mackenzie’, Rudbeckia fulgida ‘Goldsturm’ and Aster x frikartii ‘Monch’
  • Several of the Michaelmas Daisies are showing their colours now. ‘King George has been building for a couple of weeks. I don’t usually have to stake this lower growing variety and the weather has split the centre, sadly.
Aster amellus ‘King George’
  • The Japanese Anemones seemed to start flowering earlier than ever this year. Has anyone else found that a lot of herbaceous plants are a lot taller than usual? I grow this one to cover the stems of Clematis ‘Alionushka’ but it is taller than the five foot fence panel behind.
Anemone x hybrida ‘Honorine Jobert’
  • The patio area was particularly hit by the very high winds earlier this week. Although I took the large basket of Begonias down the plants were destroyed so I’ve cut them down low and put the basket in a corner to die back. Then I’ll overwinter the corms again. Other Begonias in the mixed pots were also badly damaged, as were some Dahlias. I think the later have time to recover, thankfully. Begonia ‘Glowing Embers’ hasn’t been affected too badly though.
  • I’ve had this grass for quite a long time now but it has never done very well. Last year I moved it to the front of the long border and it’s now very happy. The picture doesn’t do it justice – I find it hard to photograph grasses.
Grass ‘Lostlabellus’
  • A casualty of the wind, this now prostrate Achillea looks quite good with the Geranium.
Achillea millefolium ‘Cassis’, Geranium x riversleaianum ‘Mavis Simpson’

The weather looks a lot calmer for the Bank Holiday weekend and I intend to spend as much of it as I can in the garden, making up for time lost to the weather. I’ve some ferns to pot on for my new fern wall and I’m hoping that the Non-Gardener might build the next set of shelves to put them on soon! I hope that the weather is kind to you and your garden, it’s still the safest place to be. Thanks to our host for enabling us to peek into each others gardens. Check in at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/

Six on Saturday 22/08/20

It’s late Saturday morning as I write this weeks Six. A heavy shower has just finished and the sun is shining through a gap in the dark clouds. The garden is battered and bruised after Storm Ellen passed through yesterday. I have three quite large water butts (conservatory, glasshouse and garage) that were already full after the recent rain and it seems such a shame not to have been able to capture more. Sadly, the house downpipe is on next doors end wall so I don’t have access to any of the roof water but an autumn/winter project will be to (hopefully) double up one or more of the existing butts. Might have to rope in the Non-Gardener for that! While the garden stands itself back upright, although it’s still fairly windy for the next few days, I’ve retreated to the glasshouse for todays Six.

Through the door
  • I use the glasshouse all year round and we keep the wood for burning in the coming winter under the end staging. A small area of the staging on the right is ‘heated’ (tube heater underneath and a Celotex lid on top) in the winter to keep it frost free but the rest of the over-wintering plants take their chance under fleece. In the spring it is full of cuttings and seedlings growing on with temporary staging to hold seed trays on the left. This is then replaced with large pots for tomatoes and an aubergine and the end staging holds pots of peppers. I’ve grown them for many years so feel that I have some idea of what to do. In the early days of lockdown I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to get enough compost, like a lot of gardeners. A local garden centre, not my usual go to place, was doing home delivery so I ordered some grow bags from them. I don’t like growing the plants in these bags so empty them into the large pots to give deep root runs. I didn’t like the smell of the compost but went against my better judgement and carried on anyway. Where else would I get some more? The result is that the tomato and pepper crops are a disaster. I don’t grow many tomato plants and like a variety so buy small plants to grow on. They grew but were very spindly and lanky. Initially I put it down to the not ideal growing conditions but they then went very yellow, the leaves grew all twisted, the fruit didn’t set and some plants stopped growing altogether. I was slow to take this all in (lockdown brain) but I scraped some of the compost of off the top of the pots and replaced it and started a very, very regular feeding regime. They’ve improved slightly but not a lot. Maybe these were just (very) old grow bags but I was also reading the other day that there have been reports of residual weedkiller getting into garden compost.
The cane is thicker than the tomato stem, very few fruits

Thinking the crop would be a total failure I dug out a packet of seed that came with a magazine, sowed them very late and grew them outside. They’ve done really well. Moving on to the peppers, this one is nearly ready to cut

It’s just a shame that it’s the only one on the plant. The chilli pepper is a little better but nowhere near as productive as usual

  • Last autumn I made the decision to grow more ornamentals in the glasshouse as that is where my interest lies so I ordered some Achimenes tubercles to grow on the staging. I wasn’t sure if it would be too hot in there for them but wanted to try. There is an Amelanchier on the north side of the glasshouse which provides shade in the summer (more than I would like sometimes as it has grown a lot taller than I was expecting it to: pruning has been started in the last couple of winters to bring it down gradually). They are really getting into their stride now
A. ‘Caligula’. It’s a bit redder than it looks here
A. ‘Little Beauty’
A. ‘Harry Williams’ is a very tall variety. Bottom left is ‘Ballerina’ and top left is ‘Serge Saliba’
  • All the rain that we have had recently means that the bowls of succulents have become much too wet and I think some of the plants are showing signs of root rot. To give them a chance of drying out on Thursday I stood some of the taller ones under the outside table and moved others in to the glasshouse.
Luckily, the leaky patch in the roof just misses these pots
  • For years I have had a pot of Oxalis triangularis growing in the house. I’ve tried growing it outside in the summer but, without fail, it gets rust. It is obviously quite hardy as the little pieces that have been left behind in the ground have come up in following years but then succumb to rust. Last year I divided the main plant and overwintered a pot in the glasshouse. It hasn’t got rust 🤞. It’s on the floor to get some shade (and hide the wood). At night the leaves fold up and droop slightly.
  • I showed Impatiens repans a few weeks back and it is still doing well, coping with the heat. I also bought a cutting of I. niamniamensis which has the very apt common name of the Parrot Plant.
I. niamniamensis – so weird that they named it twice plus a bit more
  • And finally, if I turn around and look out of the split door, this is the border on the side of the garage. It’s about 10 feet long by 5 feet wide.
The late summer border

Time to go and pickup blown over pots, again, and pick up all the leaves etc from the patio and gravel path. I hope your weather enables you to get out into your garden this weekend. There’s lots of inspiration courtesy of our leader at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/

Six on Saturday 15/08/20

What a week of weather! We’ve had very hot, sunny, humid days (and nights, minus the sun), some overcast humid days, thunder and lightning and some heavy rain. The garden has stood up to it quite well although the hanging basket of begonias suffered in the heavy rain. It was too hot to be working in the garden on several days so I’ve plenty of dead heading, tying in etc to do this weekend between the showers. The Solenostemon cuttings from last weeks Six have all rooted and need potting up. The hydropod certainly speeds things up.

The garden seems to have stepped into early autumn this week with the first Michaelmas Daisies showing colour (not counting ‘Monch’ which has been in flower for a couple of weeks) and the Amelanchier leaves turning and dropping already but I’m going to try to prolong summer for as long as possible with this weeks Six.

  • I’ve tried several times, without much success, to grow Echinaceas but last year I managed to do so. They came through the winter and have made a good sized clump this year. I’m going to try some root cuttings in the autumn because they’re not a long-lived perennial.
Echinacea purpurea
  • Clematis viticella ‘Etoile Violette’ scrambles through a Pyracantha in the back garden. It looked beautiful before the downpour made the flowers hang their heads 😢 but I wanted to show it before it passed its best.
Clematis viticella ‘Etoile Violette’
  • Another Clematis, this time C. orientalis ‘Bill Mackenzie’ – the orange peel Clematis. I have it growing in a limited space so cut it back virtually to the ground every March. It started flowering at the beginning of May and is still covered in flowers with the addition of the beautiful silky seedheads which persist well into winter.
Clematis orientalis ‘Bill Mackenzie’
  • Last week I showed Eucomis ‘Oakhurst’, this week it’s the turn of E. bicolor. I grew these from seed several years ago but wasn’t sure if they would survive the winter so kept them in a pot and overwintered them in the glasshouse. After a couple of years of doing this I decided that they could take their chance in the ground where they did quite well and were totally hardy (in North Somerset anyway). However, (you’d guessed that there was one of those) the fleshy leaves were a magnet to slugs and snails and the large leaves flopped all over adjacent plants so I dug them up and put them back in a pot. They don’t smell very nice, although the flies would disagree, so live by the glasshouse.
Eucomis bicolor

The individual flowers are lovely and the spotty stems are something else

  • Last year I grew some Patrinia scabiosifolia from seed. The germination rate wasn’t great but I planted the resulting plants out when they were large enough. Then the drought arrived and, despite my best efforts, they disappeared without a trace. Or so I thought. This spring two of the plants have reappeared and are coping well with this years drought/deluge weather. I even managed to plant Cosmos ‘Xanthos’ to coordinate with this one without knowing it. Hoverflies love the flowers.
Slightly weather beaten Patrinia scabiosifolia with weather beaten Cosmos ‘Xanthos’
  • There were several contenders for number six but a plant that has fascinated me this week is Cobaea scandens, the Cup and Saucer Vine. This is the first time of growing this climber and I’ll certainly grow it again. It has very attractive foliage (for an annual climber) is self clinging and has repelled the aphids, unlike a lot of the other annual climbers I grew this year. Although described as an annual climber the RHS site says it is a perennial. Is this just in its native Mexico or has anyone had it survive the winter in the UK? Tiny flower buds have been visible in the leaf axils for a couple of weeks then last week they started to rise up on long stems
Cobaea scandens buds

The newly opened flowers are a greenish/white colour (there wasn’t a newly opened bud this morning when I took these pictures). This one opened yesterday.

Day two flower bud

Over the next couple of days the purple colouring creeps through the flowers

until they turn a rich purple colour.

A beautiful purple Cobaea flower

We’ve had more rain in the night and it’s very mizzly at the moment but, thankfully, quite a bit cooler so I think I’ll be starting with the cuttings in the glasshouse. Thank you for reading my Six, enjoy your weekend whatever you have planned (I’m still mostly hiding in my garden) and don’t forget to make time to check in with our leader at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/

Six on Saturday 08/08/20

It’s forecast to be 29 degrees today (feeling like 34, apparently) which, after a pretty warm and, at times, windy week with still no rain means that a lot of the plants in the ground are getting very stressed. I was dead heading in the main border earlier this morning (trying to beat the heat) and the plants towards the back are wilting very badly. Hopefully, they’ll pick up a bit this evening and overnight but I’m not sure how much longer they’ll hang on. Enough of the doom and gloom and on with this weeks Six on Saturday. These plants are not in the main border! I was a bit late taking the pictures this morning and so they’re a bit too sunny.

  • Let’s start on the patio. I spent an afternoon this week taking cuttings of Solenostemon (Coleus in old money). I grew some last year but didn’t keep the cuttings warm enough to get them through the winter. I bought some new rooted cuttings from Dibleys and they have done really well. Another lesson learnt the hard way last year was not to plant them in the borders as the SnS can smell them from half a mile away. All in pots this year and doing very well.
Patio pots with Solenostemon
The cuttings before covering

The trimmings in the bucket were as pretty as a picture!

Beautiful

  • The succulents certainly don’t seem to mind the lack of rain and several are flowering. They are in individual or group pots on the patio, along with Succulent Tower. This is Pachyphytum bracteosum, bought as a tiny plant last year. On the other side of the plant are two offshoots but I can’t quite bring myself to cut them off! It’s a shame that the flower stalk is so weighty as it means that the individual flowers are hidden from view.
  • In the same pan is an Echiveria that is also flowering. The stem is out of all proportion to the plant (see first Pachyphytum photo)
Echiveria rosettes with triffid emerging from the centre
  • Also in a pot on the patio is Fuchsia ‘Lechlade Gordon’. Acquired last year, the main plant wasn’t as hardy as I’d hoped but I had a couple of cuttings. Phew! The honey bees have loved the flowers on this but were camera shy this morning. Looking at the notches that have appeared in the leaves the last few days I’d say that the vine weevils are enjoying them as well 😢. Nemotodes ordered.
  • Todays final patio selection is Eucomis ‘Oakhurst’. I have a few varieties of Eucomis and there were some very desirable ones featured in some of last weeks Sixes so the number may well increase. I have tried growing them in the ground but the SnS adore the leaves (and the flower stem). Also, in the case of E. bicolor, the leaves that survived the munching grew so large and then flopped over nearby plants. So they are all in pots. I keep most of them away from the patio because they have a very unattractive smell. Flies, however, find it irresistible. ‘Oakhurst’ is an exception because I love the colour.
  • To break the patio theme – Lobelia x speciosa ‘Hadspen Purple’. Although this is very hardy I overwinter it in a pot so that it can get to a SnS resistant size before planting out. My Cosmos labelling obviously wasn’t as accurate as I thought hence the rogue ‘Antiquity’ in amongst the yellow ‘Xanthos’. It seems very happy so I can’t bring myself to pull it up.

It’s tooooo hot out there now to garden so I’m going to sit in the shade and catch up with some other Sixes, actually on a Saturday instead of my usual Wednesday and Thursday. You can do the same courtesy of our leader at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/

Six on Saturday 01/08/20

We don’t seem to get two days the same weatherwise at the moment. On Tuesday night the temperature in the glasshouse was down in single figures, yesterday afternoon it was over 45 degrees in there. Poor plants. There’s a few showers forecast for this morning and it’s quite breezy. Again.
We’ve braved going out into the world a bit more this week (only to outside places with few people around). A lovely long beach walk and a visit to Cerney House Garden were both very enjoyable. The Non-Gardener is slowly starting his work again but I can’t see when I will be able to start mine 😔. On the positive side, that gives me plenty of time in the garden, most of it dead-heading at the moment. I’m building up to a visit to a garden centre or, even better, a nursery! Definite withdrawal symptoms and things are starting to run out.

For the last few weeks I’ve been showing the garden by area but this week normal service is resumed, focussing in on individual plants.

  1. Let’s start with a Clematis. This is ‘Diana’s Delight’ and I planted her last year. I wanted a shorter variety for this trellis but I am hoping that she will get a bit taller (never satisfied, as the NG says). The main flowering was in June but there’s a second flush of flowers appearing.

2. Last week I showed Gaura lindheimeri with Verbena bonariensis, this week it’s teamed with Achillea millefolium ‘Cassis’. This is a pairing to keep an eye on I think – the first seeds quite freely and the second runs well.

The Achillea is a lovely soft crimson colour, not as pink as this looks

3. Dahlias have done better for me this year but some of the ones I planted in the borders have suffered recently in the damp weather. How much can a few slugs and/or snails eat in a night!!! Dahlia ‘White Onesta’ hasn’t fared too badly.

4. I have two Agapanthus, both deciduous and in pots. One is quite a dainty one and the other is much stronger growing but both are unnamed. The smaller one started life in a pot, never had more than two flower stems and so was planted in a border. After five or six years with no flowers at all (and not a lot of growth either) I dug it up and put it back in a pot. There followed one or two years with no flowers, then progress with three stems but last year I was disappointed to only have two stems again. I wasn’t holding out much hope for this year but there’s 11 stems. Woohoo!

The second plant is stood in the garage side border. This is it’s third year with me – one stem last year and two this year (they wouldn’t both fit in the picture). The flower heads are about three times the size of the above plant, although they don’t really look it in the photo as it’s in with the big boys.

5. I wanted the glasshouse to be a bit more flowery this summer and have a few ornamentals growing in there. This is the first time I’ve grown Impatiens repans. It was one of my few on-line purchases (a gardener can only go so long with no new plants), was slow to get going but is making up for it now. I’m growing it as a trailer in a shadier part of the glasshouse. If we have a prolonged hot spell I may have to move it outside.

6. The gardening season has started to change over the last couple of weeks with Cyclamen hederifolium popping up at the border edges. I love these little flowers and, after many years and a little help, they have spread around the borders really well. Some of the seed heads from last years flowers have still to open (you can just make out some of the coils) so the new flowers seem a little early to me but I suppose it is August.

Thanks for reading. Have a great weekend and don’t forget to catch up with all the wonderful gardens thanks to our host at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/

Six on Saturday 25/07/20

It’s been a mixed week weather-wise, rather cloudy, some sun and a little rain – all in all a little disappointing for the time of year. However, there’s been plenty of time for gardening, dead-heading is the main job at the moment. Over the last few weeks I’ve been showing the ‘bigger’ picture of my small garden. This week is the week that I run out of garden to show you: there’s just the front garden left. The photos were taken between rain showers so aren’t great, sorry.

  1. Years ago I planted a mixed hedge between us and our neighbours. It’s been left to its own devices for a few years and I’ve started some cutting down recently as it was getting a bit tall and wide. There’s a privet hedge at the top of the garden and roses on ropes and posts by the road. The front garden has to look after itself most of the time and the planting has evolved rather than been planned. It’s mostly left-over plants. The only additions this year are the Ginkgo tree, hiding in the centre (ish) which has been growing on in a pot for a few years, Ricinus communis and some Cosmos. The annuals are self-seeders.

2. Gaura lindheimeri and Verbena bonariensis both seed around, especially the Verbena and a lot of seedlings are pulled out in the spring. They make a good pairing though.

3. The front of the house faces virtually due north but the road end of the garden bakes in the sun at this time of year. The soil is quite heavy clay and large, deep cracks appear when rain is in short supply. The roses enjoy the sun but would do better with more water, I’m sure. They get a good water, feed and mulch in the spring then they are on their own. They peaked earlier than usual this year but there are still a lot more buds on the plants. R. ‘Graham Thomas’ is having a rest but ‘White Swan’ and ‘Crown Princess Margherita’ are in bloom.

4. Rudbeckia lanciniata has taken a couple of years to establish but is starting to thrive. I like the green cones and the bees etc love them

5. Lysimachia clethroides can be a bit of a thug, readily running in all directions but is easily contained. I chop it back to a size in the spring then let it go again. I must deadhead that Cosmos! Not easy as there aren’t any paths as such – wasted planting space!!

6. The porch is north facing and over the years I’ve tried to grow all sorts of things in it but everything just grows outwards and ends up very leggy. Ferns work well on both sides and this Hosta was happy once I stood the pot on the ground instead of up on a step.

I hope you’ve enjoyed the tour around the estate (🤣) over the last few weeks. Normal service will be resumed next week. I’m very late participating this week and am currently listening to the rain and thunder so will head over a bit earlier than usual to check out some other Sixes courtesy of our host at

https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/

Have a great weekend.