Six on Saturday – November Cheer

I am determined to remain upbeat for this week’s Six on Saturday.   Apparently, according to a memo I received this week from our mentor The Prop, it is important that we keep our happy faces on, given all that is going on at the moment.  And, as we all know, what The Prop wants, The Prop gets.  This morning’s result didn’t help.  Then I heard the story of the South African captain, Siya Kolisi, and my disappointment turned to love and respect.  There is always something there, something to turn things round.  We just have to look a little closer.

Shall we kick off with the psychedelic partnership of Begonia ‘Glowing Embers’ and Fuchsia hatschbachii.  Both were distinctly underwhelming earlier in the season.  The same can not be said for them now.  Planted in a collapsing half barrel in the frozen north, they get absolutely no direct sun now.  Do they care?  Not likely!

Next we have Jacaranda mimosifolia grown from Mallorcan seed.  It has had a good summer outside, growing well all things considered.  Last week I moved it to the waiting room, just outside the back door.  Soon it will be moved inside for a winter sojourn away from the elements, attempting to inflict a little class on the spider plants.

Onto nasturtium and friend.  I have reached the time of the year when I say “oh, bless its little cotton socks” rather than reaching for a brick.  This of course is very short sighted of me, they will return in droves to haunt me, punishing my soft heartedness.  You may have noticed by the attractive drops on the leaf that it is raining still.  On a day off I really don’t care.

Now an unknown penstemon, a cutting from a former client’s garden.  It has flowered all summer and is showing no sign of retiring from active duty.

The Lavandula pinnata has thrived this summer.  I really should have taken some cuttings but I didn’t so there is no point worrying now.  It is in a sunny, well drained spot, so the odds are stacked in its favour.  I may have just jinxed myself.

Finally, the exotic glamour of Impatiens flanaganae.  After a dramatic pause it has come into flower just in time to make number six.  Definitely worth the wait.

Not sure that was particularly cheery, but one does what one can, until the next time ….

 

 

Six on Saturday – Wise Words

Buddleja 'Black Knight'

Another day, another Six on Saturday.  As I am on a jolly holiday trip today I have risen very, very, very early* to contribute to this popular meme, for fear of the wrath of The Emperor Prop if I should miss another week**.  Due to my extreme rushdom these photos could have done with a retake/delete, but as these pictures where snapped at the crack of dawn*** this was not possible.  In an attempt to justify excuse disguise my bad craftmanship explain, I decided to use the noble medium of metaphor to get me out of a sticky situation enlighten you.

Lesson One.  Do not judge a flower by its lazy photographer.
Let us begin with the moody tones of Buddleja ‘Black Knight’.  From this, carefully selected, angle the blooms are mostly in the shade.  We have been robbed of an accurate representation of its beauty.  This requires the viewer to exercise their imagination to complete the picture.  It is important to keep the brain muscle active.  Basically I am doing you a favour.

Roscoea purpurea

Lesson Two.  Out of sight is out of a scatty mind.
Earlier in the year I dug up this Roscoea purpurea and potted it up for safe keeping.  This spring, although I was patient, nothing came up in the pot.  This poked up its cheeky head last week.  In the ground.  At the exact spot that I had dug it up.  The question is what did I cosset through the harsh spell?  A figment of my imagination perhaps.

Meconopsis napaulensis

Lesson Three:  All that glistens is not gold platform boots.
Even when it is out of focus.  The flower heads of Miscanthus nepalensis are sprinkled with pure sunlight.  These gilded strands carry the seeds which will make more of these stunning plants. Once into their stride, this is but a baby, they produce spectacular, polished metallic, rasta dreads.  A very special sight.

sidalcea

Lesson Four:  Ignorance is sometimes bliss
Or, don’t believe anything you are told.  Except of course that you are lovely.  This white sidalcea was sold to me as an unknown geranium.  Unknown, yes, geranium, no.  The result is quite blissful.  To represent the hazy nature of my knowledge off this plant, I have employed this vaseline smeared effect.

Fuchsia hatchbachii

Lesson Five:  Behind every great fuchsia is an great one.
Could be construed as, “don’t always look at the ones that push themselves to the front, the ones just behind are sometimes much clearer”.  Fuchsia hatchbachii, a favourite of mine, is proving this point.

Hedychium 'Tara' seedling

Lesson Six:  Honesty is the best policy.
Usually anyway.  Sometimes, in order to avoid misunderstanding or misrepresentation, words are not necessary.  Here Hedychium ‘Tara’ is speaking for herself using her beauty alone.

That is your lot.  Now you can nip on over to The Propagator’s site and find a cornucopia of SoSers, that should keep you out of mischief for a little while.  As for myself, I must bid you adieu, off to RHS Rosemoor Flower Show ……

*If you believe this, you would believe anything
** I’m just kidding myself, he doesn’t even notice, he has so many loyal subjects, I am just another acolyte.
*** See * above

Six on Saturday

Scabiosa drakensbergensis

Scabiosa drakensbergensis

I’m not much of a joiner-in.  Its not that I don’t want to, but I lack focus and commitment. However I have decided to have a go at The Propagator’s meme, Six on Saturday.  For those of you who don’t know The Propagator he is best described as The Terminator in reverse.  His remit is simple: post six photos of plants from your garden on a Saturday.  That can’t be too arduous can it?  Apart from the small fact that most of my pictures are taken in my esteemed client’s gardens and I never work at the weekend.  Um.  Could be tricky.

I have asked Mine Host if I can use photos from other places and he most kindly agreed.  I haven’t mentioned the “not taken on a Saturday” bit yet as I don’t want to push my luck.  I will promise to stick to six if that helps.

So in an uncharacteristic willingness to conform, I have on this occasion battled through the chaos and managed to find the magic six in my own garden.  As I have mentioned before my own garden is full of good intentions and neglect.  This was therefore not an easy task.  But I was brave.

The opening photo is Scabiosa drakenbergenis, which is a cutting from a plant at Cliffe.  That plant was grown from seed.  It is loyal and undemanding, winding its way through and around others in the border, popping its head up in unexpected but welcome places.  It comes from the Drakenberg Mountains in South Africa, reaches 1m tall and is tough and beautiful, a perfect combination.

Fuchsia hatschbachii

Fuchsia hatschbachii

Next comes Fuchsia hatschbachii.  This fuchsia came into my possession whilst on a trip with Torrington Tina.  That is all you need to know, except no criminal activities were involved.  None that might result in a prison sentence anyway.  I like to think we liberated it.  Compact in form, dark green foliage, masses of slim red and mauve flowers.  No wonder both myself and TT had independently admired it from afar.  Sometimes you do get what you wish for.

Verbena bonariensis

Verbena bonariensis and friend

Now for the ubiquitous Verbena bonariensis.  Self-seeder and butterfly magnet extraordinaire, it was doing its job well this morning.  This little chap was hanging on for dear life as the stems almost doubled in the brisk breeze.  Others might have called it a raging wind.  Hopefully his persistence paid off.

Rosa 'Rhapsody in Blue'

Rosa ‘Rhapsody in Blue’

Oh yes, the rose.  The Rosa ‘Rhapsody in Blue’ that I bought earlier this year from Cannington Walled Garden has just begun its second flush of flowers.  The scent is delicious, the flowers a treat. It is doing very well in its pot, has avoided any blackspot and is growing just a little too vigorously!

Dahlia australis

Dahlia australis-ish

We must have a dahlia.  This is one that I grew from seed and is purported to be Dahlia australis.  I have an inkling there may have been some shenanigans with an interloper.  Although this has the slightly nodding habit of the species, it is supposed to be single flowered.  Oh well, you win some you lose some, and it is very pretty.  It shall be known as Dahlia australis-ish, which is quite hard to say after a couple of babychams (or equivalent).

Teasel

Terrific Teasel

And lastly the magnificent teasel.  These self seed in the front garden and are direct descendants of The Giant One.   TGO lived in our garden in Bristol and hitchhiked a lift on one of plants we brought with us.  For the past 10 years they have appeared without fail, to the great joy of local bees and finches.  When the winds come from the North, they dance a merry dance.

So there we have it, Six on Saturday.  Thank you Mr P for hosting this meme.  I hope I have passed the test.