Tag Archives: Scabious Fata Morgana

In a vase on Monday – return of blooms on a desk

photo 1

I’ve been taking flowers to work again for weeks now but I thought I’d share this one from last week as it was a bit different.

Firstly, I’d picked Plumbago for the first time, and actually it lasted very well.  This was joined by Scabious ‘Fata Morgana’.  I grew this from seed for the first time last year and planted it in the Bronze Bed expecting it to be quite peachy.  As it is it’s rarely more than cream which was disappointing in the bed, photo 2

but worked with the Sweet Pea Lathyrus ‘Jilly’photo 4 (1)

To these I added Salvia horminum ‘White Swan’.  I was prompted to grow these after the success of S. horminum ‘Oxford Blue’ last year.  I love the green veining which makes it looks so fresh.  However, the truth is these blooms were picked directly from the seed tray where they were still languishing, and when I returned home last Thursday they were looking a bit peaky and I still haven’t planted them out in the ground!  I’ve given them a good soak this evening and hopefully they’ll last the week and I can dream up somewhere to plant them next weekend…photo 3 (1)

With thanks to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden who hosts this lovely meme.

In a vase on Monday – When two worlds collide


If Cathy, at Rambling in the Garden, who hosts ‘In a vase on Monday’, wasn’t already using the epithet ‘The Golfer’ for her husband, I would definitely have used it for mine.  He joined the local ‘Shanklin and Sandown’ golf club shortly after we moved to the island and this Saturday became their captain.

A week earlier he had (casually) asked if I could produce some flowers for his ‘Captain’s Drive in’ event on Sunday, when he hosted as captain for the first time, and ran a charity competition, to be followed by cream teas at the clubhouse.  Whilst my initial reaction was ‘no’, I looked around the garden and realised there were still hundreds of blooms. What I couldn’t quite picture was how they would work together, and then I realised, they didn’t have to.

There were to be ten tables of ten, so I splashed out on some cute spherical jam jars from Nutleys and set about making two matching arrangements for each table, twenty in all.

It all seemed like quite a good idea, until many hours later on Saturday….

So here they are, Cosmos Purity and Ammi,IMG_9337

Rosa Snow Goose and Zinnia Giant LimeIMG_9338

Helianthus Italian White and hebeIMG_9325

Rosa Jubilee Celebration, Cerinthe and Antirrhinum Orange wonderIMG_9329

Rosa Pink Flower Carpet, Antirrhinum and HoneysuckleIMG_9330

Dahlia Happy Single Date, Scabious Fata Morgana and mintIMG_9341

Zinnia Raspberry Cordial, seedheads of Iris unguicularis and Photinia leavesIMG_9327

Zinnia Giant Wine and Antirrhinum Liberty CrimsonIMG_9332

Cosmos Double Click Cranberries and Dahlia Downham Royal.IMG_9334

and lastly Salvia Horminum ‘Oxford Blue’, Aster frikartii ‘Monch’ and LinumIMG_9335


And of course what happened?  They’ve already signed me up for New Year’s Eve.

Oh Captain, my Captain, what have you started?IMG_9349

In a vase on Monday – just peachy!


After the success of last week’s peachy vase I was inspired to go bigger and here it is.

The vase has more of the Zinnia Raspberry Cordial, IMG_8435

Antirrhinum Orange Wonder,  Dianthus Green Trick, as well as green heads of Sedum Autumn Joy.

These have been joined by first pickings of Scabious Fata Morgana.  This is growing in the Bronze Bed and has turned out less peachy than I was expecting, but does seem to be getting rather more orange as the flower heads age.IMG_8436

But the new flower I’m most excited about is this Dahlia – Dahlia Happy Single Date.  Such a lovely colour.  What with my Raspberry Cordials and my Happy Single Dates I feel plenty more peachy vases to come!IMG_8438

With many thanks to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden who hosts all the lovely Monday vases.  Why don’t you ramble over and see what everyone’s found for their vases this week?

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – August 2015


Many of my current blooms are annuals grown from seed this year and the one above, Malope trifida Vulcan, has been amazing.  To be honest it probably should have been staked, but I’m quite enjoying the chaos and colour it brings.

Also in the mid century bed is my new dark rose, Munstead Wood still going strong.IMG_8211

In the other new bed, the Bronze Bed, there are Poppies, Papaver nudicale Party Fun.IMG_8242IMG_8239

Nasturtium Caribbean CrushIMG_8245

seen here through a curtain of Hordeum Jubatum.IMG_8240

together with Achillea terracottaIMG_8244

and Scabious Fata Morgana, which as feared, isn’t quite as peachy as I’d hoped, but pretty nonetheless.IMG_8241

In pots I have plenty of pelargoniums including this lovely scented one Pink Capitatum.IMG_8235

And at my cutting garden, I have these magnificent Sunflowers growing from seeds kindly sent to me by Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.  We thought they were Ruby Eclipse, but they’re rather more yellow and enormous!  IMG_8249

As well as these giant sunflowers, I have also grown two smaller varieties, Helianthus cuc Italian WhiteIMG_8251

Helianthus Vanilla IceIMG_8250

Er, spot the difference?

As well, there are plenty of Cosmos Double Click Snow PuffIMG_8255IMG_8253

and Cosmos Double Click CranberriesIMG_8256

The Antirrhinum, A majus Orange Wonder which I was tempted to move back home, of course never got moved, and is having a second flush in the Cutting Garden.


Another Cutting Garden stalwart is the Salvia horminum ‘Oxford Blue’


This year I’ve gone a bit mad with Zinnias, planting Zinnia Benary’s Giant Lime, Zinnia Benary’s Giant Scarlet, Zinnia Benary’s Giant Wine, Zinnia Raspberry Cordial and Zinnia elegans Queen Red Lime.  Sadly the Queen Red Lime didn’t germinate  well and those that did ‘damped off’ but the rest are just starting to produce their fabulous bright blooms, on good strong stems, perfect for cutting.IMG_8259

with plenty more to come.IMG_8260

One group of flowers which really hasn’t fared well this year are my sweet peas.  They struggled with the dry weather early on, and have certainly suffered more from greenfly than any year I can remember – perhaps because they were stressed by the early drought.  But I still love them, roll on next year.IMG_8224

With many thanks to Carol at May Dreams Gardens  for hosting everyone’s GBBD.

End of Month View – July 2015


Oh dear, two day’s late for EOMV, but on a positive note, a whole new perspective.

The photo above was taken from the roof of the building we call the ‘office’ (because that’s what the previous owners used it for).IMG_8041

Having now completed my two new beds I’m looking for a project, and my latest dream (partly inspired by sipping cocktails last weekend with my now 18 year old daughter on the rooftop Sky Lounge of the Amsterdam Hilton), is the idea of a roof terrace on top of the office.

The views over Bembridge Harbour are much better than elsewhere in the garden as the height allows you to see over the trees, and, even more excitingly, the roof gets the sun late in the evening which none of the rest of the garden does.

I’m not sure what I’d ever be able to plant up there as we’d have to build some sort of structure over the current roof as it doesn’t have any structural strength,  but I would love there to be some planting – may be some wafting grasses?  Oh, and a very comfy outdoor sofa.

I told you it was a dream…

Back to reality, and the garden is really parched. The Swing Beds should be filling up with annuals and dahlias, but both both seem quite slow to get going – the dahlias in particular are way behind the ones in pots and still very short, and I feel this must be due to lack of water.  And the sweet peas on the netting never really got going this year.IMG_8050

In the right hand Swing Bed there is a lovely clump of Aster Frikartii Monch looking good in front of the Phlomis.  The equivalent Aster in the left hand bed is looking rather sorry for itself.  I really love this plant and must remember to take some more cuttings.IMG_8051

The Grass Bed still has its magnificent grasses, but everything else is looking rather sad.  I’ve decided I’m going to pull out the Verbascum – Verbascum chaixxi album.  It just doesn’t flower for long enough (maybe again drought related) and the dead spires are in my opinion just rather ugly.  I remember the first year we had the garden I just put in Cosmos Purity in this bed in front of the Stipas and they were absolutely great.  I think next year I’m going to go back to that.IMG_8052

The troughs that run along the the front of the raised decking are starting to fill out with annuals – Cosmos, Salvias and Ten Weeks Stocks.  Unfortunately they’re rather bullied by the unwanted (but don’t tell the OH as he planted it) vine, growing along the railings and are all falling forward. However, I quite like the ensuing chaos, and so haven’t rushed in the stake them.IMG_8049

As for the new beds, the Mid Century Bed is going from strength to strength – probably because I’ve been much better with the watering.  The centaurea are turning into huge clumps and there’s definitely some staking required of these.  Likewise the gladdies, have suffered in the high winds and many are now at angles that it would be generous to describe as ‘jaunty.’



In the new Bronze Bed, the Achillea are continuing to fill out and some of the Nasturtiums have really taken off.


The three dahlias planted here are yet to flower, but the Hordeum Jubatum grasses are still going strong and they’re fabulous.  (Maybe they’re a contender for the dream roof garden!).

One other plant grown from seed this year which has been threatening to flower for weeks has finally started This is Scabious Fata Morgana which I chose because of its apricot tone.  I have to say these look rather yellow to me, but I’ll have to see whether they change colour with age.  They’re certainly a lovely flower shape and on good long strong stems.


And to finish, my poor neglected veg patch.  I’ve been away both last weekend and this one, as well as working in London Tuesday to Thursday both weeks, so sadly everything has got a little out of hand and the veg patch is probably the worst example.

Not only has it not seen any water, but nor has there been any picking going on.  Whether my French Beans ever start cropping again remains to be seen, but in the meantime I’ve had two lovely mini breaks!IMG_8043

With thanks as ever to Helen at the Patient Gardener for hosting everyone’s EOMVs.