Monthly Archives: May 2017

End of Month View – May 2017

The Frustrated Gardener said the other day “if a garden doesn’t look merry in May, there’s a problem” and although I’m thrilled mine has survived our recent absence (thanks to the dogsitter’s kind ministrations) it’s not ideal that it’s so merry now, as it will doubtless be looking rather exhausted by the garden opening in four weeks’ time!  Ah well, at least I can share with you.

So, this view is the Mid Century bed looking across the Lavender bed to the incredibly flowery Leptospermum beyond.  Here it is with an invasion of self seeded Valerian keeping it company.

In the right hand Lavender Bed the peonies are just about to burst

whilst in the left hand one (aside from miles of Convolvulus)  there is my ‘old’ Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’ and new E. ‘Red Jep,’ lots of pinks and my little Silk Tree.

The Swing Beds are wallowing in multiple roses as well as yellow soldiers of Sisyrinchium and pink Diascia personata.

Conversely, the Grass Bed is in a sorry state, with little to entertain except tatty forget me nots and self seeded Nasturtiums and Poppies.  This is due a big clear out and will be planted with annuals, hopefully next weekend.

The Veg Patch has moved on from this picture, as I’ve now planted out runner beans and sweet peas.  I’m intending to plant further flowers for cutting here, so have only erected two sets of bamboos this year.

The fleece to the right is to protect the strawberries in the lower bed,  but we’ve now moved it off the wall as it was forcing the Agapanthus flower heads into such awkward twists I felt compelled to liberate them!

At the other end of the garden the Oak Bed has its summer foliage on, with the lovely Cercis, the Sambucus (and indeed the over-the-road-oak) in full leaf.

The Pat Austin roses in the Bronze Bed are doing their cantaloupe thing, and will hopefully soon be joined by Achillea ‘Terracotta’ with Dahlia ‘Happy Single Date’ to follow later in the summer.

I’m still planting up pots, with the troughs by far the largest.  The plan here is a trailing sweet pea ‘Cupid’s Pink’ at the front together with a shorter Cosmos ‘Antiquity’ behind, but there seems to have been a bit of a mix up with the Cosmos lables, so I could end up with any one of four different varieties.  Oops.

Other pots which have largely overwintered are looking far more established – Pelargonium ‘Surcouf,’

a bonkers bath full,

a restocked barrow

and a restrained pot.

In the greenhouse I’ve finally planted out the tomatoes and cucumbers, but just look what greeted me on my return from holiday.  Just imagine the scent!

 

 

 

In a Vase on Monday – Dark

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I love ‘In a Vase on Monday’ because it’s full of beauty, warmth and a sense of community, and, reading Cathy and Christina‘s posts this morning about their meeting (which sadly I missed as I was away) only reinforced how wonderful warm hearts and like minds are.  Sadly, this was something so brutally missing a week ago in Manchester.

Consequently I’m sharing flowers which, whilst deliberately dark, I hope convey both life and beauty, things we all need to pause to appreciate in these tricky, tricky times.

Wishing you all a peaceful, beautiful Monday.IMG_2609

Thanks Cathy.

Tardy Parham post

The same weekend we visited Gravetye Manor, we also visited Parham House and Gardens in West Sussex.IMG_2453

It’s a garden I’ve been meaning to visit for ages as I read they had fabulous tulips.  Sadly, unlike Gravetye, only a few miles away, the majority of the Parham tulips were past their best, but there was so much else to admire, not least some glorious walls and structures.IMG_2399

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Oh, and did I say there was a fabulous nursery?IMG_2451

Thanks Parham, IMG_2392

I wonder if I can make it back for your Garden Weekend?IMG_2388

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – May 2017

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I’ve just looked back at my GBBD post from a year ago and it’s all tulips with a few Narcissi – today’s is roses, poppies and pelargoniums.  What a mad spring!

The rose above is ‘Pat Austin’, the one below a bit of a family joke as I’m not a fan of red and so, when a builder chopped it back to ground level a few years ago I didn’t mourn.  However, since then it’s come back bigger and stronger, so I’ve given it a grudging acceptance.IMG_2563

And here’s ‘St Swithun,’ finally looking well established on the pergola. IMG_2571

There are a few more roses already in bud  so I’m starting to fret they’ll all be long gone by the garden opening at the end of June!

This little Cistus is also looking more summery than the calendar – but then so was today’s sunshine.IMG_2572

Having rested for only a couple of months the Leptospermum is back again.IMG_2552

By the front steps I’ve popped some bought Osteospermums into the big bath.  I like how the centres pick up the colour of the Pelagoniums behind.

Another daisy flower is the Erigeron karvinskianus growing in the crack at the bottom of the steps.  

Also near the steps is a lovely inherited Genista.

The first year we were here it flowered at the same time as the Callistemon, it’s planted next to and together they were quite a sight, but again this year it’s not to be.

Two Alliums flowering now.  The one on the left is called ‘Violet Beauty’ and was planted in the Drive Bed to flower with a similarly coloured tulip.  Not only did they not flower together last year, but this year only about three of the tulips returned, and not many more of the Alliums.

The one on the right is good old ‘Purple Sensation’ (being apparently strangled by the foliage of Allium Sphaerocephalon)

I bought a new Geum recently, ‘Prinses Juliana’ (the one on the right), to go in the Bronze Bed with ‘Pat’ (the rose).  I was perfectly happy with it until I read Sarah Raven talking about G. Totally Tangerine (the one on the left, which I had already in a pot on the barrow).  From these photos they don’t look that different, but she’s right, Totally Tangerine is a softer more subtle colour, and definitely a better match for Pat.  Darn!

More orange from this lovely little plant we brought back from Madeira just a week or so before I started this blog.  It hasn’t flowered for years but I’m delighted to see it blooming again.  I did find the name at one stage but have now lost it again.  Any clues?

Looking across the Lavender Bed to the Mid Century bed beyond I like how the Gladioli spires are repeated by the Foxgloves.

 

I love this little poppy.  I’ve gone a bit mad for them and have planted plenty, some grown from seed (including this one) and some bought as plugs.  Let’s hope it works!

At the back of the Swing Beds these Nicotiana mutablis are now over a metre tall.  I’m still a bit confused as to whether they self seeded, as they seemed to get going so early, it’s more like they overwintered,  There a definitely a few kicking about in seed trays that seem to have survived, so I’m thinking I should plant them out too.

There are a few Pelargoniums blooming now, including this one bought at our local Boot Fair and hence nameless.  It’s one of my favourites and I’m forever taking cuttings to increase my stock.

And this is another favourite – Surcouf, in the twin pots on the decking.  They’ve gone mad this year!

In the greenhouse the Sweet Peas are also going bonkers and I’ve picked a proper big bunch this weekend.

To finish I think my favourite bloom today.  This is Erysimum ‘Red Jep’ which I fell in love with when I saw it at Hyde Hall.  I found just one supplier and bought them online last year, but I note this year Sarah Raven has them too!  I’ve taken a few cuttings but I really must take more as already they’re looking a little woody at the base so I’m not sure how long they’ll continue to look so good.

With thanks to Carol at May Dreams Gardens who hosts everyone’s GBBD.