Tag Archives: Rosa Falstaff

End of month view – June 2016

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What with my Northumberland jaunt, last weekend’s party and working in London every week, I’ve calculated that I’ve spent only ten whole days chez Duver Diary during June (and four of those working) and, whilst certain wonderful things carry on despite my neglect (roses, lavender, self seeded this and that) I do have a definite sense of the garden getting away from me.  If you look closely in the photo below, for example, you’ll see convolvulus growing up rosebay willow herb, surrounded by a fringe of couch grass.  So please don’t!

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Taking a circuit round the garden from this point takes us first to the troughs.  These still have the very leggy Matthiola incana that I can’t bring myself to bin, but these have now been joined by seedlings of the (slightly shorter than ‘Purity’) white Cosmos, Cosmos ‘Sonata White’  and Salvia horminum ‘Oxford Blue.’  I’m hoping it’s going to fill out into a wall of blue and white, but it’s very early days and I do think this trough, being south facing and metal, does suffer if the weather’s warm (some chance!).  And no, I didn’t line the front panel with polysterene as you’re apparently supposed to. IMG_1105

On to the veg patch and the most obvious ‘crop’ below is the Sweet Peas, definitely not edible!  Otherwise, from front to back, I have (under fleece) Purple Sprouting Broccoli ‘Early Purple Sprouting’,  and Cavolo nero ‘Black Magic’, and then Chard ‘Pink Flamingo’, Mange tout ‘Shiraz’, Dwarf French bean ‘Safari’ and Runner Bean ‘Lady Di’.  And running along the front edge (right of photo) Courgettes ‘El Greco’ and ‘Gold Rush’.  I think these are all new varieties to me except ‘Lady Di’ and ‘Goldrush’ so it will be interesting to see how they all do – and how they all taste.

On the left, out of site, in the highest raised bed, I planted Squash ‘Sweet Dumpling’.  This bed isn’t easy, as whatever’s there has to compete with the bay trees which were there first and obviously suck out lots of water.  I thought planting upturned bottles together with each plant and watering directly to the roots should solve this problem.  I was a little worried that I only had one plastic bottle kicking about and so was going to have to go on a San Pelligrino binge, but no!  Slugs ate all but one plant, so turns out my single bottle will be sufficient…

Meanwhile, if anyone has any bright ideas as to what veg would be happy in a very dry, south facing raised bed, please let me know, because there’s plenty of space now!IMG_1106

In front of the main veg patch is a smaller bed holding strawberries and rhubarb.  I planted out some Agapanthus I’d grown from seed along the back wall last year as I thought they’d enjoy a good cook against the south facing wall.  And look – over a dozen flower heads.  So exciting!

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The Swing Beds definitely need a sort out.  Since their creation in 2011 it’s taken some time for them to fill up, but now, all of a sudden, I feel they’ve got rather unbalanced, with certain thugs taking over at the expenses of other things.  I definitely have too much of the pink geranium along the front, so I need to thin that out.  And then I also have a number of annuals I’ve grown from seed which need to be slotted in.

I live in hope that this weekend might provide time for a BIG SORT OUT, but we’ll see…IMG_1131

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The grass bed has been completely dug over and emptied (apart from the Stipa) and has also been planted with annuals.  I’ve taken inspiration for the first year we were here, when I simply planted Cosmos in this bed.  This year I’ve included Cosmos bipinnatus ‘Fizzy White’ but have added Ammi visnaga ‘Green Mist’ to the mix.  I’m hoping for a white/green froth to echo the cow parsley in the field opposite.  We’ll see.

And in the interim, I’ve planted a few marigolds I had kicking around along the front edge.IMG_1111

I have been quite busy planting up pots post the big bulb throw out, but the one below is a new one, one of a matching pair given as a gift from my sister.  The concrete post is by the old (empty) chicken shed and the metal chicken normally sits on it but, as she’s not attached, she spends most of her time blown onto the ground.  I think she looks rather more settled amongst the pelargoniums and ipomaea!IMG_1110

In the Mid Century bed the Rosa ‘Falstaff’ is getting established on the obelisk, but you might remember I had good success with Rhodochiton atrosanguineus here last year, and I have now also planted some seedlings to see if they’ll cohabit with the rose.IMG_1112

There are a couple of pleasing combinations here – Dahlia ‘La Recoleta’ together with Dianthus ‘Sooty’

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and Digitalis ‘Mertonensis’ with (rather flopped) Rosa ‘Jubilee Celebration.’   (I do wish ‘Mertonensis’ was taller – I’d have it everywhere)IMG_1114

On the other side of the garden the Oak Bed has now developed into a wall of shrubbery – the Cercis in particular has really filled out this year.IMG_1128

Closer to the house the Bronze Bed, new last year, is also exhibiting a rather floppy rose – Rosa ‘Pat Austin’.  I’m sure she wasn’t this tall last year and I pruned her pretty hard.

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She may be a rather ungainly girl, but she’s certainly pretty.IMG_1127

In the greenhouse I’ve finally planted out my tomatoes, cucumbers and aubergines, but I couldn’t bear to pull out the Sweet Peas as they’re still flowering really well, so the toms have been relegated to each end of the bed.  IMG_1123

There are still a few seedlings kicking around inside the greenhouse – see below a third wave of Sweet Peas – but that is nothing

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….compared to all this lot outside!  Roll on the weekend….IMG_1120

With many thanks to Helen at the Patient Gardener for hosting our End of Month views.

New beds focus

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Today I thought I’d focus in a bit more detail on the new beds created this year.  I took the view that I didn’t want to spend a fortune on plants (although the roses were clearly an exception!) so I grew a lot of plants from seed.  As a consequence, it has taken a little while for the bed to get going, but you can see from the picture below at the end of March, what can happen in just over a couple of months.

Sadly the whole bed has got rather droughted (especially the hamamelis, H. Aphrodite, which now has very crispy leaves) but I think a couple of good drenchings have saved the position, and things are looking perkier.

The initial planting in the photo above left shows the Calendula ‘Sunset Buff‘ grown from seed last year and the small Libertia peregrinans,  I added some more C Sunset Buff grown this year, but all have suffered with the drought and become rather mildewy.   The photo below shows them at their peak a few weeks ago –  I do like this soft apricot colour.IMG_7711

As well as the calendula, I planted seedlings of Eschscholzia “Cameo Dream”, but these too have struggled with lack of water.  I’ve definitely lost a few and have yet to see any flower, which is a shame, as it’s a lovely, jolly flower I remember fondly from my childhood home, so I’d like to try to establish it here.

More successful has been the Nasturtium Caribbean Crush.  These echo the colour of the Calendula, but are shorter and so have been planted nearer the edges of the bed.IMG_7931

In the photo above you can also see one of the two Rosa Pat Austin I bought for the bed.  I had this as my Wordless Wednesday on June 10th, but that one was actually in Louise’s garden at the Old Rectory.  I guess mine have been a little later to flower as they have been newly planted this year.

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Another plant I bought in was the Achillea Terracotta.  I’ve admired this for a while so it’s been lovely to have a bed where it looks at home.  I’m hoping as the calendula (and maybe nasturtiums) give up, these will keep on flowering.

And lastly in this bed, another plant grown from seed (actually last year, and then never planted out!) the beautiful Hordeum Jubatum.  I do wonder whether it’s a bit odd combining grasses with roses, but I love both.  The grass provides such lovely movement and looks particularly special later in the day.

The photo below shows the view from ‘my’ seat at our out door table.  I’ve struggled a bit with the photo as the new bed looks rather bleached, while the oak bed and the over-the-road-Oak are virtually black.  Whilst it’s not exactly like that in real life, the oak bed certainly recedes into the shadows at this time of year and so doesn’t provide a very entertaining view from the table at exactly the time of year when you might be thinking of eating outside.

Later in the season I have some (sale bargain) dahlias to add, some kniphofia and geum and also Scabiosa atropurpurea Fata Morgana.  The Scabious were from Chilterns and have dainty scabious shaped apricot flowers which I’m excited to see!

Hopefully the bed will continue to evolve and improve over time as I edit the plants and decide what works best.IMG_7933

The other new bed, has also come on dramatically since March:

One of the early highlights, together with the transplanted Cerinthe, was the ‘mistake’ ranunculus, supposed to be dark, but actually bright pink.  They are just about over now, but have been flowering continuously for over two months.

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Seedlings planted here and already flowering  include Stocks ‘Ruby Punch’Malope trifida Vulcan, Moluccella Bells of Ireland,  Dianthus baratus Nigrescens and this lovely poppy, Papaver somniferum ‘Lauren’s Grape’.

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In this bed I’ve planted three different roses, two Rose Munstead Wood, I’m delighted with:IMG_7924

and two Jubilee Celebration I like, but really think are too pale here.  I think I need to ponder on this (and also have somewhere else to put them if I decide they have to move.

The third rose is Falstaff Climbing, which was bought to climb the ‘obelisk’ birthday gift.

IMG_7926The rose has not even flowered yet, and will clearly take some time to make a real impression, so in the interim I bought a Rhodochiton atrosanguineus which is just romping up the support.

As with the Bronze Bed, there are hopefully more delights to come – again some dahlias, and further seedlings yet to flower including Daucus Carota Black Knight.

Whilst I can’t pretend creating these new beds has been cheap, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed trying to minimise the expense by planning and growing a significant amount from seed.  And, as with much gardening, not everything has gone to plan, but we wouldn’t want it all to be too easy now would we?

Resolve and realise – March 2015

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Well a much better month than last (although I’m a day late posting!) with all jobs pretty much completed.

There were many jobs carried forward:

  • mulch all beds

Hmm, not quite there, but the vast majority done, so think we can tick this one off

  • prune and feed remaining roses

Tick.  Herewith a photo of my roses from last year,  rather than a pruned and fed twig, but trust me.IMG_2873

  • pot up dahlia tubersIMG_6470

I have some dahlias in the ground, some that were overwintered in the greenhouse in a large terracotta pot, and then these few, which were dug up and overwintered as tubers.  I think it was because they were in pots I wanted to use for something else, but it’s all a bit of a blur now, and I certainly can’t remember their variety.  Oops.

  • chit potatoes (and decide growing approach)IMG_6467

I finally got round to buying some potatoes – Ratte and Anya this year.  I’ve also bought some potato growing bags for the first time, so I think I’ll put some in the ground (in the top ‘tier’ of the veg patch) and some in the potato bags.  I’m planning to put the potato bags in the area of the veg patch behind the raspberry canes.  It’s pretty dark but I did grow potatoes there before in the ground, but then they got blighted.  Clearly I can’t grow them in the ground again, but hopefully they will do ok in the bags and make a difficult area productive.

  • sow chillies, tomatoes and hardy annuals

Tick.  The seed tray at the top shows my particularly perky looking Padron Peppers.  There may be a few more hardy annuals to sow, but I’ve definitely sown all the tomatoes (Sungold, Gardeners Delight, Ferline, Black Cherry and Country Taste)

  • plant out broad beansIMG_6457

I need to provide some support for these, put at least they’re in the ground.  I have a second wave now in the cold frame which I’ll plant out in a week or so.

and new for March

  • plant aubergines

Tick.  I’ve never had much success with Aubergines, but I love to eat them, so I’m trying yet again.  This year’s variety is Kaberi from Chiltern.  Has anyone tried it?

  • finish planning two new beds and start to buy seeds/plants accordingly.

A lot of time has been spent daydreaming about what to put in the new beds and a few things have already been planted which I can show in the EOMV post, but one thing I will disclose here is my recent extravagance with David Austin:

For the Mid Century bed

2 x Munstead Wood
2 x Jubilee Celebration
1 x Falstaff Climbing

And for the Bronze Bed

2 x Pat Austin

 Rose Munstead Wood, picture courtesy of the David Austin website

So for next month

Nothing to carry forward – hurrah!

New for April

  • Prune various shrubs that probably should have been pruned already
  • Continue planting seeds, pricking out and potting on
  • Plan cutting garden
  • Provide supports for broad beans and plant out second wave
  • Start to erect structures for beans and sweet peas
  • Tidy up shady bed and lavender beds
  • Continue planting up the two new beds

If you’d like to join in with Resolve and Realise, please do, just leave a link to your post in the comments.