Late again for End of Month View, and some rather dodgy photos to boot!
The roses above – Flower Carpet Pink – are back on stream and providing good colour in a garden otherwise rather lacking in colour now.
The Swing Beds are pretty much flower free apart from the Asters.
We’re enjoying the return of the decking –
and we even managed to save the vine that grew along the front. That’s now been joined by some fuller looking troughs with Cosmos bipinnatus ‘Antiquity’ and Pelargonium ‘Choun Cho’.
The veg patch is pretty chaotic but we’re still picking plenty of goodies.
The Zinnias in the Grass Bed have filled out and are providing plenty of picking blooms.
At the western end of the garden, the ‘Pat Austin’ roses and ‘Happy Single Date’ dahlias have been joined by the Arctotis ‘Flame’. I just love those spiky blooms!
The dahlias I’d planned to combine with the Asters in front of the greenhouse were similar to the Arctotis but much bigger, with the fabulous name ‘Mel’s Orange Marmalade’ – see photo below from Sarah Raven website.
Sadly, I can’t show my own photo as (I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned this before) I was supplied with the wrong ones, and instead they were pink. However, they haven’t thrived (probably too dry and not rich enough soil) so in future I think I’ll focus on just the Agapanthus and Asters, and forget the Dahlias.
In the greenhouse, as well as plenty of tomatoes and a few cuttings coming along, these small aubergines ‘Slim Jim’ have done really well.
Aside from that, a few pots, and that’s about it!
With thanks to Helen at The Patient Gardener who hosts our End of Month Views
I’ve started my Yearly Round up with a photo of the garden in June as June saw me coordinating the St Helens Secret Gardens event (the garden opening of a dozen local gardens in aid of the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance) for the first time.
I was so relieved and delighted all went smoothly – largely due to the fabulous weather. The event is only every other year so I can put my feet up this year!
As ever, there were successes and failures in the garden, with a really annoying number of bulbs, particularly tulips, lost to some nibbling critter. I like to think it might be one of our beautiful red squirrels as at least that means they were lost to a good cause! However, there were also successes, and I’ve shared some favourite garden photos below:
I added a new tree to the garden – Albizia julibrissin ‘Ombrella,’
had fun with pots
and tried new edibles in the greenhouse – Pepper ‘Tequilla’ and
Aubergine ‘Slim Jim.’
I also continued creating various vases, both for Cathy’s ‘In a Vase on Monday’ meme
as well as to take to work with me.
I shared a few more photos taken on the daily dog walk on the St Helens Duver – the National Trust land opposite where we live that gives this blog its name.
And also shared plenty of garden visit photos, including, in March, Le Jardin de Secret
and Jardin Majorelle, both in Marrakech,
in May, Gravetye Manor,
and Parham House and Gardens.
In June, The Old Rectory Gardens, open for the NGS on the Isle of Wight
In September, Hauser and Wirth in Somerset
and in October, a couple of gardens on the Cote d’Azur – Jardin Exotique d’Eze
and Ville Ephrussi de Rothschild.
On the learning front, I finished the second year of my Level 3 Certificate in Garden and Planting Design course at Capel Manor College. I toyed with the idea of embarking on the RHS2 course but I was concerned it would all be a bit ‘schooly’ with little of the lovely gardening chat we had on the design course, so instead I took a six week photography evening class at the Bishopsgate Institute. However, the learning highlight must have been my crafty visit to the reopened Garden Museum where I created my festive robin.
So, another busy year chez Duver Diary – to be honest, sometimes rather too busy, and blogging has increasingly taken a back seat on occasions since I went back to working full time in February, but I still enjoy capturing and sharing photos both of my garden and others, and hope I can continue in 2018.
Thank you so much for supporting Duver Diary and sharing your likes and comments. They are such delight when work – or the wider world – are getting me down!
Wishing you and yours a fabulous, flowery 2018.
Well it’s all gone to hell in a hand basket – end of month view four days late – hopeless. And the photos, taken last weekend when I’d nearly run out of light, are hopeless too! Ah well, as mentioned before, I find these monthly views handy for me, so think I’ll still take you for a spin.
The Mid Century bed above is looking appropriately ‘bruised’ and the ‘gladdies’ continue to make their presence felt whether I like it or not – and I still can’t make up my mind!
The troughs have been a bit of a disaster this year – the Cosmos Antiquity never really got going, so I’ve allowed the enormous self seeded shoo fly plant (Nicandra physaloides) free rein as there’s not much else going on. The trailing sweet peas ‘Pink Cupid’ really didn’t like the heat of the metal trough – I suppose not surprisingly – and pretty much all curled up and died. I’d like to try them somewhere else next year, but worry that with any pot I’ve have a similar problem, and yet if not in a pot how do they trail?
The Veg patch is showing off some rather more successful sweet peas than the ‘Pink Cupids’ but these too have suffered from lack of water. I’ve definitely had far more blooms from the greenhouse ones this year.
As well as the blooms I’ve had the usual broad beans, runner beans and courgettes but had a terrible time germinating french beans and sugar snaps this year and so haven’t had any.
I am growing Sarah Raven’s flower sprouts or ‘Kalettes’ for the first time this year which are a cross between Brussels sprouts and kale and have ‘baby’ kale in the place where you’d expect the Brussels to be. I haven’t harvested any yet and at the moment the plants don’t even seem to be showing much sign the kalettes will appear. I have just checked the SR website and it suggests I should be harvesting from September to November, so hopefully there’s still time…
The Swing Beds still have a reasonable amount of interest with the Verbena, Penstemons, Salvia and Asters as well as the incredibly long flowering Diascia personata.
I shared the view over the Grass Bed as last week’s Wordless Wednesday. It really was a glorious day and the Cosmos ‘Psyche White’ have been great this year.
The Perlagonium ‘Surcouf’ continues to smother both pots, and increasingly the trellis behind, to the extent where I wonder whether at some state I’ll move the Clematis out altogether and concentrate on just getting the Pelagonium to climb.
Poor (Clematis) Princess Di (as it is she) seems to be as unhappy in my pots as she was in later life, but that’s a whole other subject…..
Another couple of really successful pots have been the pair by the greenhouse doors. These were another Sarah Raven suggestion and have been truly spectacular this year – Thunbergia ‘African Sunset’ with Arctotis ‘Flame’. I’m hoping I’ll be able to overwinter the Arctotis and even make some more by taking cuttings, but I’ll have to start again with the Thunbergia as it is annual.
In the Greenhouse Beds I’ve had a clear out of the Nasturtiums as I’m hoping to expose some soil so the Poppies will seed. I’ve also planted out some Aster Frikartii ‘Monch’ (some of which were grown as cuttings, and some bought months ago). The idea was to increase the number in the Swing Beds, but they’re currently so rammed with plants I was worried the Asters wouldn’t get established, so thought they’d be better where I can keep an eye on them. Even if I decide to move them later, I’m sure they’ll be happier having finally got their ‘feet’ in the soil.
At the other side of the garden, the Dahlias and Roses are still pumping out blooms in the Bronze Bed.
By the long table there have been a couple of late Wisteria blooms – but these aren’t them. These are Dolichos Lablab ‘Ruby Moon’ which I had growing in the pots by the front door which have self seeded in a pot I’m growing a Clematis in. The Clematis is taking its time to get going so these have been a lovely surprise. Goodness knows how they got here!
Into the greenhouse and I’m delighted the Plumbago has bounced back from near drought induced death to be spectacularly floriferous again.
And to finish, Aubergine ‘Slim Jim’. He’s a good looking lad, but I haven’t tasted him yet!