Six on Saturday – A Challenge

When I switched my phone on this morning the first thing I saw was a message from my sister-in-law “have you two tied yourselves to the house?”.  Curious.  And then it dawned on me, the news of our very own cuddly Storm Callum had reached the Netherlands.  For your information we are managing to stay attached at the moment, without the need for baler twine.  Unfortunately the plants are not doing quite so well, it has been quite wild out there in the big bad world.  Hence, it is a miracle that there are any photos today.  A feature peculiar to Chez Nous is that the weather is often different in the front of the house to the rear.  When it is sultry summer in the back garden it can be an arctic winter on the seaward side.  Today the front was merely dark, dreary and dank, a little horizontal rain but that is par for the course.  The rear however was a raging bough-splitting, swirling cataract of tempest.   I exaggerate not.   Photography was a challenge.  I took at least 5 million pictures and have managed to glean a scant six from the dull blur of the rest.  What I am blithering on about? Why the urgency?  I had to get enough photos to contribute the The Propagator’s Six on Saturday phenomenon of course!

There are positives and negatives to my first photo.  This is the little alley to nowhere flanked by the house on one side and the garden retaining wall on the other.  There is a shelf (rotting, I might add) on one side where I cosset the special ones.   Pots are stored underneath for winter protection and shade lovers are given some shelter beneath the whitewashed wall.   This is where all and sundry have been shoved in order to avoid damage whilst works are continuing to the house.  Whilst these unceremoniously shoved-in pots (not by me, I hasten to add) have been protected from the worst of the weather, all but a few on the margins are totally inaccessible.  Who knows what high jinx my nemses are up to?   And the interminable nasturtium is marching ever closer …….. It is a worry.


Come on, less of this misery, let us have a bit of good cheer! Here is a plucky gazania, continuing to flower in spite of the inclement weather.  Actually it is not strictly “continuing” as it, as well as others in the garden, had a short hiatus during the best/worst of the dry summer.

Magnolia 'Heaven Scent'

Next we have the tawney veined leaf of Magnolia ‘Heaven Scent’, clinging on for dear life.  This tree was inappropriately purchased for reasons of name and cost alone.  I never said I was perfect.

Chilli Bishop's Crown

This chilli pepper, Bishop’s Crown, was rescued from the home for wayward plants a few weeks ago.  In a pot, far too small for its dimensions, I repotted it and then ignored it.  Really they should do some kind of home check before these neglectees are allowed into the hands of the public.  The fruit don’t look very Bishop’s Crown-y, not that I am an expert in this department.  I might try and over winter the plant, and be nicer to it next year.

Whilst much else is closing down and shutting shop for the season, this hydrangea thought fit to throw out another couple of flowers.   Blooms in minature, but the colour is just as fine, if not better, than earlier in the year.

Dicentra formosa 'Bacchanal'

Lastly we have Dicentra formosa ‘Bacchanal’, again flowering out of season.  This is a plant that has been on The List for a while and I was hyperventilating slightly when I spotted it last month on a stall at RHS Rosemoor Garden Show.   These flowers are much paler than I remember them being and I am optimistically presuming that this is due to the season, weather, planets aligning or some such variables.  We will see.

And that is it, the wind is still roaring and whistling around the scaffolding like something out of a Hammer Horror film, but I am cosy, unlike my poor plants, at the mercy of the monsters who roam ….

Thanks Mr P, take a look at his site and find out what else has been going on in the world of the SoSers.  It will keep you entertained, but I can’t promise that it will keep you out of trouble.


17 thoughts on “Six on Saturday – A Challenge

  1. It was nice of the tulip-acquiring branch of your family to interrupt their tulip-acquiring to check that you had not blown away, even if your wig had. And there would be no Saturday urgency if you got out of bed before afternoon tea was being served. Burying your shade lovers in the foundations of the house is a bit extreme but if they are strong enough to support the wall then, I suppose, it’s an interesting concept. For “crown” read “mitre” – which is a sort of distorted triangular shape (see, I’m a mine of useless information). Love the cheery Gazania and the unseasonal Lamprocapnos (do keep up to date). Looking forward to next week’s little gems from sunny Devon.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My cloggy relatives are both caring and gorgeous, a combination that is not often found in the real world. I thought we had agreed that we would keep my wig on a need to know basis. Thanks for the chilli info, I am not surprised at the depth of your knowledge. You keep telling me so. As for the dicentrocapnos, I did check with the RHS and they are still calling formosa, dicentra, although others aren’t and I am now feeling rather tired …….

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Lovely Gazania! Even if the petals are not completely open, it’s a nice shot. As for chilies, I will also try to over winter mine (or just the only one left: the Padron which is still alive now)
    It’s good to see the re-flowering of the dicentra … is it due to the weather?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Is it very windy there? We have had a glorious very warm day. A Dicentra in October? What is the world coming to? I didn’t know you could over- winter chilli plants I always throw them away. Magnolia Heaven Scent has lovely autumn leaves, does it smell heavenly?

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    1. VERY!!! Perhaps you will get the benefit (?) tomorrow. I think it is touch and go with chillis, but they are perennials, so in theory it should work. This tree is yet to flower, so I can’t confirm, but I will want my money back (possibly 3 shillings and 6 pence) if it has a wonderful fragrance.


  4. I want to love Dicentra formosa, I’ve bought various forms over the years with beautiful fine foliage and strong coloured flowers and they either die or seed everywhere in gradually worsening variations on the original. I’ve kept the white one, the rest get half heartedly weeded out.


  5. I didn’t know you were in the midst of yet more challenging weather over there, Gill, forcing you to sit inside with your battens hatched. It’s amazing that you were able to brave the weather to get some photos. Your chilli looks like a boxing glove! Interesting concept-having different weather at different ends of the house.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. tee hee – gazania . . . yellow like boots.
    I grew ‘Heaven Scent’ on the farm many years ago. There was not much demand for magnolias back then. I do not think that there is much demand now. I would not have grown them. However, they certainly were impressive in bloom. I do not remember what the various cultivars looked like. I have not grown them in years.


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