Vanity thy name is Duver Diary*

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Recently I’ve been reading other bloggers’ posts showing their flowerbeds in all their wintery nakedness and I’m wondering whether to follow suit.  On the one hand, part of the point of the blog is to capture the garden as the year progresses, and yet, i would also like it to be a visual treat, (especially after last weekend’s photography course).  Consequently, like an extended Burlesque show, I think I’ll show you a glimpse at a time, and hopefully, by the time all is revealed, it won’t still be naked.

Along the way I also wanted to share a few close ups captured during the recent glorious weather.  The one above shows the new leaves of a honeysuckle planted last year to grow up a tree.  As this shot shows, it hasn’t yet reached the tree and its current ‘mid air’ habit prompted me to stop and admire the leaves, rather than the flowers, as one would usually.

The picture below is of Crocus Cream Beauty whose sunny faces are smiling at me from numerous pots around the garden.  I love the perfect shadow of the anthers against the petal.

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So the first reveal.  These are the ‘Swing beds,’ named after the beautiful Sitting Spiritually swing we installed over three years ago when these beds were first created.  The swing faces west and the beds are roughly symmetrical, although there is an apple tree growing in the right hand bed that was already in situ that we didn’t have the heart to pull out.

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To the left of these beds are some terraced vegetable and fruit beds (out of sight and very naked currently), and to the right is the so called ‘Grass’ bed which runs alongside the road (although 10ft higher) which is lined by Stipa tenuissima, probably my favourite grass.  Beyond the garden you can see the mouth of Bembridge Harbour and the eastern end of the Solent.

Thursday was largely spent working on the Swing beds, pruning the roses, cutting back and dividing, as well as weeding a worrying patch of couch grass.  I’ve recently ordered two ton sacks of compost from the council and the next job is to mulch them.

Here’s the left hand bed a little closer.   The stand out plant at the moment is the lovely lime green of the Euphorbia wulfennii which was moved from elsewhere in the garden when the beds were first planted, but also, although you can’t see from this distance, some Cerinthe Major plants which have survived the mild winter are also just starting to flower.

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And lastly a peek of the ‘Blue’ bed last year.  Take a careful look at the Erysimum Bowles Mauve…2013 05 006 (2)

…and now look at it.  Ah well, thank goodness I took cuttings.

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*So just for our Shakespearean education, I thought I’d check where the quote came from and it turns out that ‘Vanity….’ isn’t the quote.  The quote, from Hamlet, is actually “Frailty, thy name is woman!” and, according to Yahoo answers, Hamlet says it because he was cross with his mother for remarrying his father’s brother within a month of his father’s death.  

Furthermore, Wikipedia, tells us that ” ______ thy name is ______” is “a ‘snowclone’, used to indicate the completeness with which something or somebody (indicated by the second part) embodies a particular quality (indicated by the first part), usually a negative one”.  And ‘snowclone’ is defined  “a neologism for a type of cliché and phrasal template originally defined as a multi-use, customizable, instantly recognizable, time-worn, quoted or misquoted phrase or sentence that can be used in an entirely open array of different variants”

So now we know.  But I’m still not going to change the title.

One thought on “Vanity thy name is Duver Diary*

  1. AnnetteM

    Great shot of the honeysuckle’s new leaves shining in the light!
    I bet you enjoy sitting in that swing seat (if you ever have time with all that gardening!) – you have a wonderful view of the Solent. I am surprised your Erysimum looks quite so dead – though it does look like it has new shoots coming. How old is it? Do you know what happened? They are one of my favourite plants and one I always recommend to new gardeners as they are so stunning even in their first year. They can get very leggy, though, unless and even if they are cut back hard. Mine are covered in buds again already, but they have got bigger than I really want at the front of the border so not sure whether to leave them or move them. Are they easy to take cuttings from – I have never tried?
    Thanks for the education; a good word, snowclone – must slip that into the conversation somehow!

    Reply

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