Sometimes you just get lucky. Osteospermum and photo-bombing friend.
We made it to another Six on Saturday, hurrah! If you are curious, pop on over to The Prop’s and find out what the rest of the gang are up to. For some it will be spring, for some it will be autumn, but we are all united by one thing. Things have slowed down, there is no need to rush as tomorrow will be soon enough, there is time to consider and immerse ourselves in the moment. I find that very comforting in these strange times. Let us meander to over to my chosen ones.
Firstly, we have a sublime double purple tulip. I’ve looked for the label, but nothing. I’ve looked for the packaging, but nothing. Someone needs a firm talking to. It is not the first time this has happened. The worse thing is that it is a dreadful example to my esteemed clients, whom I mercilessly nag about keeping everything labelled. It is a bit like telling everyone to stay home and then travelling to your holiday home 150 miles away.
Next we have the knicker elastic radishes, looking rather dandy. I have been watering and cooing words of encouragement. Their neighbours in the pot, some spring onions, have also begun to emerge. Always a miracle.
Onto the red Woolies acer looking resplendent against the white-washed wall. I think I might have used a similar photograph before, but I reckoned that nobody would remember or if they did, they wouldn’t care.
Now we have a jolly osteospermum. The foliage is quite frankly rather ropey, as would befit any decent osteo at this time of year. The flower is wonderful. My head says “trim it back”, my heart says “not on your Nellie”. Another battle to be waged.
Then one of my favourites in the garden, Anemone nemorosa ‘Robinsoniana’. Every year I chop back the fuchsia in the front garden to allow this ethereal beauty to shine. By the time the fuchsia has grown back, her moment in the spotlight is over and she is happy to play second fiddle.
Lastly the bronze fennel, Foeniculum vulgare ‘Purpureum’, that I dug up and disposed of a couple of years ago. I may have left an iddy biddy bit behind. Talking of behind. Fat Ol’s sister Daisy thought my photo would be greatly enhanced by the addition of a sunbathing pussycat. I agree.
That’s yer lot for another week, my friends. Stay safe and well and home!
It has been an eventful couple of weeks for the world; fire and flood, plague, false prophets, the whole shebang! In my own small and insignificant world we have soldiered on, protected from all but a smidgeon of the evil portents, although not always with our smiley faces on. There have casualties and but many more survivors. This weekend is set to bring more challenges, which we have no option but to endure. But there is nothing like nature to demonstrate resilience, the urge to survive is paramount. To see how the rest of the Six on Saturday world is faring, check out what is going on over at The Prop’s where I am sure positivity will abound. Let us get on.
First we have a hellebore which, with a little help from its lovely assistant, is showing its hidden beauty. With its head hung low it has escaped the worst of winds. Each year I promise to move it to a more accessible position. Each year I forget/lose my bottle.
The bully boy in yellow pants, Narcissus ‘Tête-à-Tête’, was ravaged by our recent weather. These flowering spikes were ripped from their planter several feet away and dumped unceremoniously on the ground. I have no doubt they will return next year, despite their rough treatment. I am very pleased to see the Aquilegia canadensis showing a leg in the background.
Next the glossy bronzed leaves of Pittosporum tenuifolium ‘Tom Thumb’ which is snuggled between a hydrangea and buddleia. No sign of trauma here. God bless hardy evergreens.
One of the branches of a large and very woody rosemary toppled during the reign of Ms Ciara. I have decided to leave it be until the weather moderates. A snail is very pleased that I have chosen a non-interventionist approach.
The Solanum rantonnetii is looking a little worse for wear. Fried to a crisp and, bearing in mind the toxicity of the plant, not as tasty. The plant is vigorous and I have every faith it will come back fighting in the spring.
Lastly an osteospermum providing breakfast, lunch and dinner for a small green caterpillar. I wondered if it was an inch worm of some sort. Perhaps. It has had a good munch, which even the most hard hearted could not deny.
Stay safe, keep your chins up and dream of happy days.
Here we go again, the world is another year older, another year wiser. One out of two aint bad. And of course, the first Six on Saturday of the year. Check out what is happening in the rest of the world, SoS-wise, over at The Prop’s. If you have a New Year’s resolution going spare you could join the slightly-dysfunctional-but-ever-so-charming gang of reprobates. It’s not that bad.
It was a tricky SoS this week. Outside was cold and windy, all was uninspiring and there was no chocolate whatsoever, believe me I searched really, really hard until I had to rush inside for an After Eight. Repeats are inevitable. I am hoping that you can forgive or have forgotten.
We begin with one of my bedding primulas. The recent milder weather and kind winds have meant that there is a relatively unblemished flower to show you. I am rather fond of its pale notched rim and sunny eye.
Next we have Fuchsia “Bornemann’s Beste” which was rocking and rolling in the wind giving me good excuse for a blurry photo. It was a late starter and has flowered continually since September. For this I thank it.
Now a pot of deceased New Guinea Impatiens which on closer inspection appear to have been planted on top of tulips. I think they might be ‘Blue Diamond’. There are also some mysterious monocot seedlings. As it is located beneath the Libertia grandiflora, it could well be them. But I have been known to be wrong about such things.
Onto the bulls eye berries of Rhodotypos scandens, stark in the gloom of the front garden. I’ve never seen a bird dining on this shrub, I wonder if they are less than delicious. I’m not going to try them out.
And then onto the valiant Osteospermum ‘JK’, spilling over the potted yew.
Finally a nestling fern, wedged between the rocks of our boundary wall. I think it is a maidenhead spleenwort, a name that starts off Barbara Cartland and ends up Harry Potter. It is a lovely little green octopus.
That is me done. Until next time.
This week I have had to enlist the assistance of the time machine again, on loan from our very own Six on Saturday Time Lord, Dr Prop. At this very moment in time I am not only here with you I am also up to high jinx on another planet, possibly indulging in age inappropriate dance moves and eating too many vol au vents. Something like that anyway.
First we have an argyranthemum. A new purchase and a lovely one too. It is very likely that I have said this before, but I will tell you again just in case you have forgotten. A few years ago, when I asked his esteened opinion, a very knowledgeable, finger on the pulse, RHS type of person said that argyranthemums were the way forward. I quite agree.
On to the demon hybrid bluebell. They are here. They look very pretty. We cannot blame them for that.
Next we have a hellebore stuck in Groundhog Day. I don’t mind in the slightest, although I do hope it doesn’t exhaust itself. I don’t want to be hearing excuses next year.
Next another new purchase, an osteospermum. It wasn’t in flower when I bought it, but I took a chance. I am a wild child. Perhaps more accurately a wild woman a little past the first flush of youth. No matter. You know what they say, “faint heart never won fair Whirlygig” (possibly).
Last weekend we had some visitors from the Big City. As the planters at the front of the house were very “Winter into Spring shabby and not in the slightest bit chic” I decided to install “Summer into Autumn fresh and unsullied by neither time nor mollusc”. I think they were fooled into thinking I keep a tidy garden. One of the newbies is this Bidens ferulifolia. This lovely is everything a bedding plant should be, bright, floriferous with the possibility of surviving the winter to give us more joy next year.
And bringing up the rear is a mini cheat. This tulip is not in my garden, nor was it ever. However over the last few weeks I have greatly enjoyed the glorious rise and fall of the blooms. Slowly transforming from tender young buds to silken brazen hussies. Just wonderful.
There we have it, another six. And don’t forget, if you need to borrow the time machine, just contact Dr Prop and he will put you on the waiting list. It comes in extremely useful sometimes.
Today at Button Moon was a day of digging holes. Big holes, little holes, medium sized holes. Some awkward roots and slates, some easy passages. Luckily I was armed with a golden spade, it made life much easier. Everyone should have a golden spade, even if you haven’t got golden boots. Into these holes I planted a pot bound camellia, three Heuchera ‘Marmalade’, a Viburnum tinus and Rhododendron ‘Horizon Monarch’. Grow, grow, grow!
This osteospermum needs no encouragement. Some might say it needs to calm down a little. Not me. I say “grow, grow, grow!”
It has been a rather discombobulating week, with midweek shenanigans and not much work. The little work I did proved to be rather beneficial, it seems that I am no longer in denial about the onset of autumn. It appears that I have caught up with everyone else, just in time for winter to rear its, potentially, ugly head. This week I have enjoyed being wrapped up against the elements, the drizzle didn’t bother me, the urge to tidy was strong and truly enjoyable. So much so, I worked in my own garden yesterday, before the “weather” arrived and I was reluctant to come in when it did. Today I will be celebrating the autumn garden. Well my autumn garden anyway. Six things in fact, which is just as well as this is Six on Saturday time again. Swan on over to The Propagator’s site to discover what it is all about Alfie, where to send your blank cheques and read contributions from other
mugs like myself SoSers.
First we have more from the Bed of Anarchy, which on reflection does sound like a death metal band. The late flowering cerise cosmos are supporting themselves on the now monstrous Lycianthes rantonnetii. This Paraguayan nightshade is also commonly known as the blue potato bush, neither of which are particularly decorative names, and has grown to its predicted 2m in one bizarre growing season. Whether or not it will be allowed to stay is the subject of heated debate (with myself and therefore could run for weeks). It may be located to someone with a more appropriately sized garden.
Next we have some pyracantha fruit, admittedly looking quite beautiful. I may have mentioned it before (perhaps one hundred times) but I am not a fan of prickly plants. And they know it. This one, purchased by OH, is in a pot and has viciously stabbed me on numerous occasions. Intentionally. It knows it is quite safe.
Now for a newbie to the Heavenly Horti Family. This is Salvia ‘Phyllis’ Fancy’ gifted to me by my old friend Hero. I have long loved this salvia; hardy and long flowering and of course dreamily delicious with its violet calyx and tinged white flowers. It was necessary to prop her up against the scaffolding for a spot of industrial chic and the fact that she is rather floppy. At present she is banished to the naughty corner, as she brought a cargo of unwelcome whitefly with her. All the same, a lovely present.
Onto more fruit, this time of the honeysuckle. These strawberry jelly orbs are tasty morsels for hungry birds, fresh flowers are opening on a daily basis and it is quite thornless. Am I making myself clear?
Now we have a slightly battered flower of the osteospermum that never sleeps. A slight exaggeration perhaps (moi?). The Beasts stopped it in its tracks, but after a rather harsh chop back earlier in the year and some encouraging words it has come back fighting. Always a joy.
Lastly we have Salvia leucantha, doing a fine impersonation of a purple wet dog. It has been featured before, but realistically this is going to happen more often as the year progresses. I am hoping that rather like myself, your memories are more patchy than photographic.
That’s it! Another SoS completed! Thanks Mr P for your leadership. Same time, same place?
It always takes me a few weeks to accustom myself to the shortening days and falling temperatures. All week I have struggled to get up in the morning and when I drag myself out of bed I am more belligerent teenager than disco diva. Today was no exception. There is one word that concisely sums it up. Dreary. The weather is dreary, I feel dreary, all is bloomin’ dreary. Still, I suppose it is all part of life’s rich tapestry, complaining will get me nowhere, least of all with you lot, so I will proceed with the always spectacularly undreary The Propagator’s meme, Six on Saturday. I can’t be bothered to explain what it’s all about, if you haven’t a clue what I am talking about (which to be honest is a regular occurrence for some) pop over to his pad and he can tell you all about it. Let’s get started.
We begin with a reluctant osteospermum. Petals held tight, closed until at the very least a single ray of sunshine warms it’s aching heart. I feel its pain. Hyperbole, moi?
Next an out of focus Geranium ‘Blue Orchid’. This is at present lodging at the far end of the alley to nowhere, out of harm’s (read builders and scaffolders, but of course I am just kidding myself nothing is totally safe from their tentacles of destruction) way. No I haven’t got over their recent little oops but I am working on it. This lovely little geranium was a gift from Julie, my friend from horti college. I could see a glimpse of blue out of the window so I went on a trek to find out who it belonged to. Shimmying through and around I could just about, at arm’s length, with a sophora getting a little fresh, snap a photo. It was a miracle of perseverance.
One of the reasons that it is becoming increasingly difficult to venture down plant alley is the relentless march of the nasturtiums. Here they are shown avalanching over a liquidambar, whilst a cosmos admires their exuberance. I keep pulling at it, it keeps on keeping on, laughing at me all the while.
Another plant which is showing no signs of slowing down is the cerise pink cosmos. After a very slow, snoozing sloth-like start, buds are popping up like chickenpox. This is a good thing. And not in the least dreary. I’m bored with dreary now, it is so, well dreary!
It was a tough year to be a rose in a pot, even more so in a garden full of container grown plants where you have to jostle for attention. Even so, it flowered well at the beginning of the year and has in the last few weeks gifted us some stragglers, this being one.
Lastly we have this diamond of a pelargonium and a confession. This was given to me last year by Mrs Bun and I was supposed to be donating it to Nancy Nightingale for her garden. For some reason it never ever made it there. In fact it didn’t get much further than outside my back door. My soul feels much better now. It is very beautiful.
Another Six on Saturday week completed, and yes it definitely is getting trickier each week. It is good to have a challenge. Which is no doubt just what I will be saying next time.
The weeks are shepherding us towards winter, a time when finding suitable subjects for Six on Saturday becomes increasingly difficult. The Lord of the Prop, whose mighty hand rules us SoSers, has followers from all corners of the earth and beyond. For some of us spring is just getting into its stride, whilst for others the cold has already set in. In this neck of the woods we are experience some deliciously clement weather, the sun is shining and although the mornings have a rousing chill, there is enough midday warmth to warrant a partial striptease. Let us enjoy it whilst we can and get going on this week’s contribution.
After the hiatus in flowering, that I can only assume was caused by such heat and dry that nonplussed both plant and gardener, we are now making up for time. There are many first time bloomers this week, including this Cosmos ‘Purity’ which although short in stature is forgiven for its perfect flowers.
Top of the list for yesterday in the garden was getting my garlic planted. This is a cultivar called Dario which is new to me, but I liked the name and felt like trying something new. It is supposed to be strong-tasting and the word “excellent” was in the description. Yes, I do believe everything I read. We will have to wait until next summer to find out. For the literatii amongst you, yes Mr K I’m taking about you, this photo is pre-planting. It is posed. If I posted a picture of a pot of planted garlic (tongue twister, give it a go) it would look like, well, a pot full of compost. Rest assured that moments later the tubby cloves were pushed down to just cover their pointy heads. Now we wait.
Another later flowerer is Salvia atrocyanea, the Bolivian Sage. Blue flowers have a special place in my heart and this is no exception. Tall and vigorous once it gets going, this tuberous perennial is relatively hardy given a well-drained soil to snuggle up in.
The parent of this osteospermum didn’t make it through the various beasts of last winter/spring. Luckily I had a back up which flowered earlier in the year and now is having another go. Which has reminded me that I haven’t taken any cuttings. Hopefully it isn’t too late, I am living rather dangerously.
Now another plant that I have featured before, Fuchsia “Bornemann’s Beste”, which is also coming into its own at the moment. It was glistening bewitchingly in the sun today, closer inspection (with specs on) revealed that it is covered with tiny silver hairs. The gift that just keeps giving.
Lastly we have a tatty old leaf of Cercis canadensis ‘Forest Pansy’. It is featured for its pure resilience. I was certain there would be not a leaf left in the whole Shire after Storm Callum bullied his way through last week. A round of applause for FP please. You can let go now.
That’s it my lovelies, another SoS completed. Don’t forget to see what the rest of his disciples have been up to over at The Prop’s. Until next time …….
After a week or more away, I have come home to builders, scaffolding, inaccessible plants and a really vicious cold. For this reason (and I will continue to blame everything on the builders including my poor health, who in reality are rather nice chaps, until further notice) my Six on Saturday will dwell on holiday snaps. Of course these consist, on the whole, pictures of plants. This is probably just as well you wouldn’t want to see myself and OH in our “kiss me quick” hats, trousers rolled up daringly above the ankle, having a paddle. If you would like to share in the experience of other SOSers, with or without builder input, pop on over to our Site Foreman to find out more.
First we have an osteospermum, growing in the recess of a wall overlooking St Ives. Always a joy to visit, come torrential monsoon and high winds or shine.
Next is a golden bamboo, possibly Phyllostachys aurea, but I’m not absolutely sure as I wandered off to admire it and I was reined back in. Which happens unsurprisingly often. This photo was taken at The Leach Pottery, also in St Ives. It is located about 100m from my childhood home and we always visit when we are down. Incredible pots and wonderful memories. Not that we were aware of it as kids, we were just kids. In those days we were just interested in playing on the beach/woods/moors and eating Mr Kipling’s produce. And yes we did buy more pots. Very beautiful they are too.
Then on to Penzance to catch up with old friends and continue our hedonistic adventures. Our guest house had a rather amazing garden, which not only had sea views but was packed with colour. These bidens were a treat, as was the Hummingbird Hawk Moth feasting on the Verbena bonariensis, which unfortunately avoided my lens. You will have to trust me on that one. On our last morning we were waiting for our taxi to take us to the train station, when a gentleman in a rather flamboyant shirt left the house. He started a conversation, asking us where we going and the like. He then dropped into the conversation, like a feather into a vat of oil, that he was returning from Kew Gardens to Tresco where he is the curator of Abbey Gardens. I may have fainted.
During our stay we visited the small-but-perfectly-formed Penlee Art Gallery and Museum, which is situated in Penlee Gardens. I almost didn’t get in the door. Waylaid variously by swathes of Tulbaghia violacea, a largeTrochodendron aralioides full of Sputnik fruit, white crinum and night scented Cestrum parqui. The treasure which made me squeal with glee was this Colquhounia coccinea, unlike my own specimen, a strong and flower-full example. When I got home I rushed to see if a miracle had happened. No.
I had a hunch when I saw the expanses of swordfish foliage that it might be something special. A little poke about and I found what I was looking for, the outlandish flower head of Fascicularia bicolor . Planted in a tiny garden, come seating area, just opposite the Jubilee Pool, this is another example of the exotic as ordinary. Wonderful.
On our last day we had an itinerary. We were having a day out with my good friend and jeweller to the stars (and me) Duibhne Gough, known to her pals as Div. She would take us to The National Dahlia Collection, then lunch, then to a nursery, then to see her new workshop before home, tired but happy. I have long wished to visit the dahlias at Varfell Farm, even more so since I named a dahlia after my Mum, read all about it here It Is All In The Name. It was a fabulously sunny day with bloom after bloom after beautiful bloom. But none were the special one. Soon I was beginning to doubt myself and that it was in fact a cruel hoax. Then a point and smile from the lovely Div and there she was in all her glory. I can quite honestly say, in a totally biased manner, that Peggy Pearlers was the most beautiful specimen in the field.
After a delicious lunch our itinerary was scrapped, as £20 worth of unleaded had found its way into the diesel Citroen. It turned out for the best, a balmy afternoon of laughter and lager (and the odd house white but that didn’t scan as well), and I didn’t buy a single plant!
Thank Mr P for being the host with the most. Until next time!