Tag Archives: Hamamelis

Yearly round up – 2015


2015 was the first time I’d planted dozens of tulips directly in the Swing Beds, having previously faffed about planting them in pots and then moving them in and out.  And, in classic gardening happenstance, they didn’t flower as I’d planned at all!  The tulips I’d planted as mids, ‘Pink Impression’ (above) flowered first, and on their own, and then these were followed by (supposedly) April flowering ‘Mistress’ and May flowering ‘Menton’ flowering together (below). The whole show was an absolute joy.

This year I’ve planted more tulips, but in the two new beds, so time will tell as to how perennial these three in the Swing Beds out to be.IMG_7022

As well as the tulips I also planted more Alliums.  I found the new Alliums ‘Violet Beauty’, a little disappointing, but the extra A. Purple Sensation I added, were fabulous as ever.IMG_7231

And the Diving Lady got a new, early bath in the form of Iris reticulata ‘Blue Note’.


As well as new bulbs, 2016 saw the creation of two new beds, firstly the ‘Mid Century Bed’, below, named after the lovely metal structure the OH bought me for my big birthday.

The theme was supposed to be bruised, purply colours, but, as with the bulbs, there was a welcome ‘mistake’ to enjoy in the form of this Ranunculus, theoretically ‘Purple Heart’, but I rather think not.IMG_7715

I planted some roses for this new bed too, including R. Jubilee Celebration (no, not very bruised either!)IMG_7967

and Rosa ‘Falstaff Climbing’ to grow up the obelisk, but the plant that really stole the climbing show this year was the ‘Rhodochiton atrosanguineus‘.


The second new bed has a bronze or orangey theme.


Many of the plants were grown from seed, including this Nasturtium ‘Caribbean Crush’ and the beautiful grass Hordeum Jubatum.IMG_8240IMG_7930

There was another new rose here too, R. Pat Austin.IMG_8906

And later in the year the ridiculously floriferous Dahlia ‘Happy Singe Date’.  This just went on and on and formed the basis of numerous peachy vases of flowers.



In June I opened the garden for the third time as part of a village group opening, in aid of the island’s Earl Mountbatten hospice.  I had over 150 visitors and some lovely comments.IMG_7889

Also in 2015 I was lucky enough to visit numerous gardens both on and off the island, including the Sir Harold Hillier garden in February (and again in August)IMG_0411

Arundel Castle in May,IMG_7089

Mottistone Manor in June,IMG_7677

Osborne House in (March and) August


and Great Dixter IMG_9124

and Bodnant in October.2015-10-29 11.28.44 HDR

As well as my own garden and garden visiting, I dipped in and out of Cathy’s lovely ‘In  a vase on Monday’ meme, including sharing the saga of the wedding flowers 

as well as this group of vases created in October when the OH became captain of his golf club.IMG_9349

And, on the basis that it’s a very rare gardener that ever stops learning, I went on courses at Great Dixter, Common Farm Flowers and West Dean.  And then, to top it all, in September signed up for a Level 3 course in Plants and Planting Design at Capel Manor college, which I’m absolutely loving.  Which reminds me, I really need to get on with my holiday homework!

Wishing you and yours a fabulous, flowery 2016, and thank you so much for supporting Duver Diary with your views, likes and comments.

Sunday lunch

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Rather madly I suggested eating lunch outside today as, for once, the sun was shining.  And although rather chilly (despite being under a glass canopy) the timing could have been worse, as ten minutes later there was a significant hail storm.

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I’ve taken the daffodils as a prompt to consider things yellow today (as opposed to blue) and the photo below shows next door’s mimosa currently lit up among the grey, bare branches surrounding it.  The sight reminds me of a weekend in late February around twenty years ago when I went to Rome for the weekend.  The sun shone, we walked for miles around the stunning architecture, had coffee outside in the beautiful Piazza Navona, and on the Sunday, A bought me a bunch of mimosa (Acacia dealbata) from a street seller.  We learnt that mimosa is a symbol of “Women’s Day” in Italy, a day celebrated in numerous countries globally (although not the UK) and in many a public holiday.  The actual date isn’t actually until March 8th but by then I will have forgotten and the mimosa won’t be flowering.

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Next is my witch hazel (Hamamelis × intermedia ‘Pallida’).  I planted this shortly after we arrived here having admired a massive specimen near the Princess of Wales conservatory in Kew Gardens.  I can’t say mine is exactly thriving, but it does seem to be getting better year on year so I think I just have to be patient.  According to Crocus it should grow to 3m x 3m, but mine is probably only 1m x 0.5m, certainly not large enough to start cutting branches for the house.

Something else I won’t be cutting for the house is my Mahonia (above), after a comment regarding a winter arrangement I made years ago – ‘oh dear, I think the cat’s done something unpleasant in the sitting room’ – so much for it smelling of Lily of the Valley!  As you can see, the Mahonia has nearly finished flowering in my shady bed and so will shortly be pruned back and mulched.

And lastly, I have a couple of pots either side of a door and in one of those chance combinations, the flowers of the Correa backhouseana are exactly matched by the papery sheaths of the newly emerging crocus shoots.  The Correa, which hails from eastern Australia, isn’t hardy, but has been very happy so far this winter against this south facing wall.  According to the RHS it can be propagated by seed (or semi hardwood cuttings), so that’s another thing to add to the ever lengthening seed list….

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