Garden Museum – twice in a week!

 

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I’ve been meaning to return to the Garden Museum for months after it reopened following its redevelopment earlier in the year.  And then, like London buses, two opportunities arose in a week.

Firstly, I went with some of my lovely Capel Manor friends (who I studied with for the last two years) to the Quiz Night (where we came an embarrassing last!) It was a very jolly evening despite, and great to catch up with my fellow Garden Designers, all of whom (except me) are now either already – or on the path to – earning their living via gardening and garden design.  I’m really so proud of them!

Aside from catching up, we also had a bit of a whistle stop tour around the exhibits and for me, one of the highlights was the exhibition of the winners of the NGS photography competition.

The one shown above was overall amateur winner:image

What’s so exciting for me about this is that apart from being a fabulous photo, it’s of the garden of a friend of mine on the Isle of Wight, and I too was there for the NGS opening this summer.  It really was the most beautiful summer’s day and the garden was looking magnificent.

The second visit involved these chaps:image

Before the Quiz Night had been arranged, I’d already booked to attend a “textiles workshop” with Debby Brown.  The session took place in the lovely, light new Clore Learning Space.

We drew round pattern pieces on plain calico and then painted them with acrylic paint.

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Having cut them out, sewn them and stuffed them, adding legs along the way, we all ended up with one finished bird, and most of us had a second in progress.

I was quite chuffed with my chirpy chap!image

How lovely to see the museum open again – and also to sample the wonderful food in the cafe.  I’ll definitely be back.

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End of Month view – November 2017

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A rather autumnal shot to start this month’s Endof Month View,ispast the yellowing mulberry towards the swing.  This mulberry was in a pot for years and is still barely fruiting now despite  having its feet in the ground.

My mother in law was kind enough to buy me a Mulberry ‘Charlotte Russe’ (the RHS plant of the year 2017) for my birthday earlier this year and, as one of its attributes is supposedly early fruiting, it will be interesting to see if it overtakes this rather more established plant!

This shot shows the magnificent Ricinus communis ‘Carmencita’, still in rude health.

In the troughs the stocks grown from cuttings are looking much more established and there are still flowers on the Pelagonium.

Likewise the Pelagonium ‘Surcouf’ still has the odd bloom.

The Veg patch is in a state of general collapse and needs clearing and mulching, but at least the Diving Lady’s pool has been newly planted with Muscari.

In the Swing Beds there is little to now see except the Salvias.

and rose hips –  I’m hoping the birds leave these alone so I can pick them for Christmas decorations.

The Grass Bed was cleared a while ago and has now been planted with daffodils and tulips.  However, bearing in mind the thievery which went on last year, serious precautions have been taken..

Walking past the house you can see the Rose carpet roses are still, rather incongruously, pumping out their bright pink blooms.

Past the tin bath and whilst the Osteospermum and Gazanias are shrugging off the chill, the rather crispy looking plant at the front off this shot is (was) a Chocolate Cosmos.  I really don’t learn as I’ve lost these plants before.  Whilst we’re blessed with a very mild climate here, they really are not remotely hardy.  (Note to self Jen!)

The leaves are nearly all off the Cercis, with just this pair clinging on in the sunshine.

The Bronze Bed is now largely a tangle of decaying dahlia stems which need to be cut down

but in amongst there is still the odd jewel!

Climbing up the wooden support for the glass awning is this Clematis ‘My Angel’.  I bought it from a specialist Clematis nursery but sadly it’s been really disappointing.  The flowers, which are similar in shape to ‘tangutica’ but supposed to be tawny/orange (to match the Bronze Bed which is directly in front) turned out to be rather insipid in the flesh, and also really small.  Not surprisingly, the seedheads are also really small which is a shame as I think they’re lovely in arrangements but I don’t think these would really work.

The jury’s out as to whether ‘My angel’ will get sent to plant heaven!

The succulents have now been tucked under the glass awning but I think if really cold weather is forecast that won’t be protection enough and they’ll need moving again.

This sink, however, is currently still out in the open and, having only been planted up this year has filled out really well.  In my enthusiasm to show it off, however, I did completely miss the enormous nettle in the bed behind.  Oops.

Here’s yet another pink Pelagonium, this one bought on the cheap from Waitrose.  It’s a perfect match for the Flower Carpet roses so I’ve just taken a whole lot of cuttings with the view of filing a big pot of them next summer.

Into the greenhouse and the banana (not my purchase!) is annoyingly looking better than ever

and there are plenty of cuttings coming along well.

One thing not looking so good is the state of the glass.  I hate cleaning the greenhouse (let’s face it, I hate cleaning) but this is definitely something on the jobs list

together with barrowing all this around

oh, and still planting the rest of these:

Wish me luck!

With thanks to Steve at Glebe House who hosts EoMV.

Behind?

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I was all set to blog a ‘woe is me’ post about my unplanted bulbs, but, one of the joys of blogging is being able to find records which, if in a random notebook, would have been long lost.

Consequently, courtesy of a post last November about spending most of a weekend on a college project, I can comfort myself with the comment “Meanwhile, shame about the bulbs still sitting in the box they were delivered in a fortnight ago….”, dated 20th November.  Yay, I’ve got a week to go!

Meanwhile, so much easier (particularly when it’s dark!) to create spreadsheets with planting plans and blooming months, than actually getting out there and getting them in!IMG_3727

 

In a vase on Monday – same but different

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Chuffed with my little glass vase from last week (not least because pickings are somewhat slimmer and shorter at this time of year) I’ve produced a similar arrangement today – even re-using the Phlomis which was still in perfect condition.

The Nasturtium (Caribbean Crush) had self seeded in the Bronze Bed,IMG_3721

whilst the dark Osteospermum ‘Serenity Rose Magic’, is still flowering away in the metal tub. I did take some cuttings a couple of weeks ago but it looks like only one has taken, so I really should try more before it’s too late.  The lighter Osteospermum, seen in the top photo is also from the Bronze Bed, but it’s a bit of a mystery as to how it got there and what it is!

To top it off I added some blooms from an Echeveria.  Can’t say I’ve ever thought to cut them before, but they’re doing fine so far and I think add rather funky ‘spidery’ accents.IMG_3723

All in all, a rather perky arrangement for mid November!IMG_3718

Why don’t you pop over to Cathy’s Blog to see what others have found for their vases on this, the 4 year anniversary?