Six on Saturday – Platinum

This might take some time.  I’m writing this week’s Six on Saturday on my Mum’s gas powered laptop.  It has languished forgotten in the cupboard since 1836 when she upgraded to a solar paneled tablet.  Once we had located the cranking handle (filed under archaic miscellany) and turned it over a few times it started up surprisingly easily.  And it is working very well.  As long as you are of the opinion that speed is an over-rated phenomenum.  The point, that I will hopefully reach before you all nod off,  is that I think this devotion to duty deserves a gold star on Mister Prop’s progress chart.  The reason being as follows:  a) location, b) content c) inclination.  At the moment I am in a different country to the one that my garden is located.  I have once again left OH home alone to the horror that ensues when I leave, that is peace and quiet and no backchat.  b)  Necessity has led me to utilize Clause 567, Subsection 34a in the Six on Saturday Constitution.  All the following plants were in my garden at some point but are are now in Max’s.  All were grown from seed.  c)  Driving on the M4 westward on a Friday afternoon to spend the weekend doing Peggy’s garden has left me a gibbering wreck.   However I have summoned all my inner strength and, aided by some thinly veiled threats by my mother, I have managed to complete my task.  On reflection this might warrant the platinum award.  What do you think?  After all that gibbering I best be brief.

First we have Lobelia bridgesii and heavily laden friend.  Gorgeous and gorgeous.

Now onto Campanula persicifolia, the peach leaved bellflower.  A great, and I mean that most sincerely folks, self-seeder.  I have an inkling that at least one of his siblings will be white.

Next Cephalaria gigantea,  the giant scabious,  this is a couple of years old now but still not up to its full fighting height.  It has made a rather serendipitous stand with some linaria interlopers.

It is no secret that I am an avid salvia fan and this one is no exception.  Salvia forsskaolii, indigo woodland sage, is a boisterous beauty.

There are two of my Iochroma australe seedlings in Max’s garden and they have both flowered for the first time this year.  As luck would have it, one is white with a hint of pink, and one is dusky blue.  The blue has my vote, but they are both lovely.

When we were kids we jokingly nominated each other football teams, I had Gillingham, my brothers Peterborough and Crystal Palace.  In the same vein I always think of Gillenia trifoliata as my signature plant.  It is thriving in a spot the text books called unsuitable after the removal of a nearby large tree.  Very adaptable us Gill’s.

Right, better get on, got gardening to do!

 

 

 

 

Wrong and Right

cephalaria

Today I went to Nancy Nightingale’s for a singing lesson.  Unfortunately I am booked in for tomorrow.  The wrong day.  Embarrassing.  It has happened before.

So without pause, ostensibly to divert attention away from my stupidity and inability to read a diary, I am going to share a picture of Cephalaria gigantea.  Definitely one hundred percent right.

Mystery

Cephalaria gigantea

This is the first cephalaria flower of the year.  In Max’s garden anyway.  It is Cephalaria gigantea, the giant scabious, which when it gets into its stride will reach 2.5m in height and 1.5m across.  No need to inforce the Trades Description Act here.  It truly is a giant.  If you have a small garden you might be able to fit one in.   But nothing else.

At the end of last season Max’s Dad visited a very reputable establishment that begins with W and ends in Y and purchased some Cephalaria alpina.  Ringing the changes, so to speak.  This relatively diminutive cousin only gets to about 1.5m high.  The airy stems topped by pale yellow blooms would be perfect in the long border.

We chose a suitable mid to rear position for the new member of the family, introduced it to its new home, planted and watered.  Then we waited for it to grow.  And we waited.   And we waited. And eventually it grew to the heady heights of 20cm and started to produce flowers.  Pink flowers.

At this point, I carefully re-positioned to the front of the border and sighed.

On the plus side it is a pretty little scabious and is flowering beautifully.  What ever it might be!