Tag Archives: Tulip Mistress

End of month view – April 2016

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Still plenty of bulbs flowering in the beds, but those in pots are now past their best and I’m currently plotting and planning their replacements.

Above, looking across the Mid Century bed towards the Swing Beds, one of the most striking things is the huge froth of forget me nots.  They look particularly effective when both the sky and water are blue – but you’ll have to take my word for that!

Below you can see that plenty of the tulips planted in autumn 2014 have returned, but rather unevenly, with many more in the right hand bed than the left.  Weird.

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Below you can see all three tulips in this bed – the earliest, ‘Pink Impression’ are almost all over, but they have been followed by two I described last year as sugared almond coloured, ‘Mistress’ and ‘Menton’.IMG_0292

In the Grass Bed, the Narcissus ‘Peeping Jenny’ (which featured as a Wordless Wednesday only two weeks ago) are just about finished, but sadly few of the Tulip ‘Spring Green’ (planted three years ago) have returned to succeed them.  And the rather mad Allium ‘Hair’ seem to have disappeared too.  I feel a shopping list coming on….IMG_0293

In the Mid Century bed the Tulips ‘Merry go round’ and ‘Queen of the night’ are blooming together when I expected them to follow one another.  If I’d known that’s how they’d behave I would have intermingled them rather than planting in groups.  Hey ho, on the positive side, I certainly hadn’t predicted the match between the dark ‘Queen of the nights’ and the Cerinthe flowers (not least because the latter shouldn’t be flowering now anyway!)IMG_0294

In the shady bed I planted this striking Narcissus ‘Goose Green’ for the first time,IMG_0296

but sadly they seem a little shy, with their lovely faces angled down.IMG_0295

In the veg area there are still no veg to admire, but raspberries, strawberries and very tardy rhubarb are finally getting going.IMG_0289

Also not much to see in the Hosta bed, but I’m trying to get ahead of the slugs by getting my ‘Slug Gone’ wool based deterrent down early.IMG_0297

Meanwhile in the west side of the garden, the new Bronze Bed is still chock full of bulbs – Tulip ‘Jimmy’, Narcissus ‘Yazz’  and a few Narcissus ‘Cragford’ still clinging on.IMG_0300

And now they’ve been joined by the Wisteria.IMG_0299

With thanks to the Patient Gardener for hosting all the EOMV.  Why don’t you take a peek at what others are up to?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yearly round up – 2015

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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’.

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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‘.

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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.

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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

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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.

Tulip review 2015

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In common with a number of other bloggers (including Peonies and PosiesMy Hesperides Garden, The Blooming Garden and Owl House Flowers) I thought I’d share a post about this year’s tulips.

And this year, my tulips have been a complete revelation.  Always afraid the bulbs would get eaten, or I’d get stuck with dying foliage for EVER, I’ve tiptoed around tulips, planting a few in pots but very few directly in the flower beds.

Well this year I went for it, planting three varieties in the Swing Beds and have enjoyed them enormously for well over a month.  Above and below, the rather large and blowsy T Pink Impression. Sadly these didn’t last that long due to strong wind in the latter part of April, but boy did they make their mark.IMG_6911

Interestingly, the same variety was used at Arundel Castle in their pots:IMG_7089

To follow on from T Pink Impression I’d planted T Mistress and T Menton.  These were much softer and more delicate in colour and have lasted really well.  The rather more peachy one is Menton.IMG_7018

In the Grass Bed I have T Spring Green returning, which was planted in 2013 and does seem to be quite perennial.IMG_7038

As the new MId Century and Bronze beds weren’t created until this spring, neither had any spring bulbs planted.  However, I did buy a few pots of Prinses Irene to pop into the Bronze Bed.  I didn’t separate the bulbs out when I planted (you can see they look rather ‘clumped’) but what I don’t understand is why they’re so short.  According to Peter Nyssen, where I buy my bulbs, they should be 35cm, but these ones were only about half that and looked rather stunted.  Perhaps the Prinses didn’t like being squashed in a pot?

Anyway, I don’t think I’ll be selecting her again, but I’m very much looking forward to chosing tulips for both new beds for 2016.

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As in previous years I also grew a number of tulips in pots.  Last year I grew the lovely pink, peony flowered T Angelique in the greenhouse pots and absolutely loved it, but this year I thought I’d try something different, and planted T Orange Angelique, together with this lovely Narcissus, N Bellsong.

Although most of the tulips had this beautiful soft peach colour, to be honest some were rather more yellow (see the one at the right hand edge of the photo) and so didn’t work as I’d intended.  Also, they didn’t last nearly as long as I remember the T Angelique lasting, so I don’t think I’ll be growing T Orange Angelique again.  Does anyone have any suggestions of another tulip to pair with this Narcissus?

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In the tin bath by the front steps I grew the very jolly T Merry go round.  I loved the size, shape and colour of this tulip, and it looked so cheerful to come home to.  Unfortunately these didn’t last that long but I think that was down to a lack of water – they bloomed early and caught the lovely April weather and I think the whole bath got hot and dry while we were away on holiday.IMG_6973

Tulips I’ve enjoyed away from my garden include T White Triumphator and T Ballerina, IMG_7138

(I think) T  Mistress, and T Paul Scherer, (not sure about the dark red one)IMG_7107

and T White Triumphator, all at Arundel Castle.IMG_7150

And lastly, Tulip Queen of the Night at Common Farm Flowers.  I just love the colour and the ‘bloom’ on the petals of this tulip.  I’d love to grow these next year but am still considering where to plant them so that they can be seen.  One of the disadvantages of my lovely hedges is that dark blooms don’t tend to show up, and it would be a crime to miss these beauties!2015-04-29 12.26.33

I hope you’ve enjoyed my review, and would love to hear any of your thoughts for tulips for my two new beds – think ‘bronze’ or ‘bruised’ or both!

End of month view – April 2015

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This has been such a glorious April and I have so enjoyed all my bulbs in the spring sunshine. Above, in the Grass Bed, are Tulip ‘Spring Green’ together with two different Narcissi.  I had originally planted ‘Sinopel’, which is supposed to have a rather green eye, but I’d noticed last year they weren’t repeating well, so I topped them up with ‘Lieke’ which look quite similar. Here they are close up in the copper pot by the steps:IMG_7003

The tulips in the Swing Beds have been a revelation.  I have never planted so many tulips directly in the ground, fearing marauders. Last year I planted a lot in pots, with the idea I would move them in and out of gaps in the bed, but it was all too much like hard work and I also wasn’t so keen on the tulips I’d selected anyway.  This year I took my chances, planted them in the ground and (unlike the dratted crocuses) all have been left well alone.  Hurrah!

When I posted my Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day post on the 15th, I included a picture of the tulips below and said I thought they were Tulip ‘Mistress’ as they were my ‘Earlies’.  However, I wasn’t convinced, and so yesterday asked the very helpful and knowledgeable Karen at Peter Nyssen  (where I’d bought the bulbs from), and she set me straight.  These ones are actually the ‘mids’ ‘Pink Impression.’

Although they were glorious, they didn’t last long as sadly the very windy weather mid month blew their large, blowsy blooms to bits.IMG_6977

However, in a fit of mad extravagance, I had planted two further tulips – ‘Mistress’ and ‘Menton.’   And although ‘Mistress’ was supposed to flower in April, and ‘Menton’ in May, they’re actually working better together than I think either would have with the ‘Pink Impressions’ and I’m just loving their sugared almond girliness. IMG_7022

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Furthermore, my new Peter Nyssen contact has assured me that both the ‘Pink Impressions’ and the ‘Mentons’ are reliably perennial (up to 5 years or so) as long as you plant them deeply enough, and dead head and feed with a high potash feed as soon as they’ve finished flowering.

I do hope this is the case as it wasn’t a trivial outlay and it would be great if I only had to replace the ‘Mistresses.’ (I’m sure there’s a joke there somewhere…)

The two new beds and the Shady Bed were shown in Sunday’s Resolve and Realise post but I will add a close up of the Bronze Bed not shown previously, showing the Tulip ‘Prinses Irene’ (bought in pots which I assume is why they’re so short), the Libertia and one of the new buds on the Calendula ‘Sunset Buff’.

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The hostas are just starting to emerge in the (aptly named) Hosta Bed.  You can see the OH has been out with the blue pellets while my back was turned.  Sigh.IMG_7029

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The Drive Bed isn’t looking too exciting at the moment, with few daffodils and some rather leggy Erysimum Ivory Giant, but if you look closely, as a result of more extravagance with Peter Nyssen, there are dozens of Allium buds just waiting for their moment.  If I’m lucky, it will coincide with the Snow Goose rose flowering above.  We’ll see!IMG_7006

And to finish, my rather paltry showing of Fritillaria Meliagris, but I do love them.

I honestly believe there are more than last year, and on that basis I think I’ll continue my quest for lawn domination.  Hey, for less than £25 I can buy another 200 bulbs.  That’s got to make sense. Or is it just me?IMG_7000

With many thanks to Helen at the Patient Gardener for hosting everyone’s End of Month Views.

The Greenhouse review – April 2015

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I missed joining Julie’s Greenhouse Review at Peonies and Posies  earlier this month as I was away, but after a weekend spent sowing, pricking out and planting out, it occurred to me that this could be the busiest the greenhouse is all year and so thought I’d take a few photos to capture it, even though I’m very late.

Sadly the pictures aren’t great as I’d spent so long playing it was pretty dark by the time I got round to taking the photos.  The shot above is of a number of the seeds I’ve now pricked out.  These are mostly for cutting but there are also seeds I’m growing for the two new beds.  I’m a bit concerned than the plants I’m growing for the Bronze Bed are a rather eclectic mix (Antirrhinum Orange Wonder, Calendula Sunset Buff, Eschoscholzia ‘Cameo Dream’, Hordeum Jubatum, Scabiosa atropurpurea Fata Morgana) but I thought I’d grow them all and then decide which ones worked and bin the rest!

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One of the reasons the greenhouse is so busy is because it’s still full of tender plants like argyranthemums, lampranthus and pelargoniums – not just larger pots but also plenty of cuttings.  Once both these and the (many) sweet peas have been moved out, there should be rather more room to manoeuvre.  Also, I need to plant out the sweet peas so that I can use the root trainers for my beans!

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Meanwhile, on the heated propagation mat, courgettes (Romanesco, El Greco and Gold Rush) are jostling for position with Helianthus and Zinnias. IMG_6990

Some of you may remember last year that I was saved from being completely overwhelmed by seedlings by my lovely neighbours J & A, who allowed me space in their beautiful walled garden to plant some of my cutting blooms (see last year here).

Well the good news is, having invited them over for coffee this morning and plied them with lemon cake, they’ve agreed that I can have space again.  Excitingly there are two different areas on offer this year which, combined, make a larger space than last year, so I’m very excited as to how much I’ll be able to pack in.  Of course the problem this year will be how I can make sure blooms get picked when I’m in London, but that’s something I’ll have to work out.

And to finish, a shot of my big, blousy tulips (Mistress).  Sadly they’ve taken rather a battering in the recent winds and are already looking a little tatty, so I’m sure they won’t still be fit for public consumption by my EOMV post, so thought I’d share them here.

Don’t you just love spring?IMG_6977

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – April 2015

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After a week away in, to be honest, rather disappointing weather, it was glorious to come home to spring sunshine and a very springy garden.

Last year I planted Avignon tulips in the Swing Beds, but whilst in isolation, they were stunning, I somehow didn’t like them in context, and so replaced them this year with a number of pinker varieties – Mistress, Pink Impression and Menton.  These ones are Pink Impression, and have definitely made an impression on me!

Alongside the tulips are numerous Euphorbias – here E. Characias in that fabulous zingy lime green.IMG_6935

My old favourite Melianthus major is continuing to flower – there must be a dozen flowers heads on it now.IMG_6918

Nearby the Wisteria is poised, and if the weather continues like this, will be flowering by the weekend.IMG_6919

Something new last year which I never blogged about as they looked rather paltry, were some Fritillarias I planted in the lawn in front of the oak bed.  Last year there were few flowers and a number of those had been flattened by the dog, so I wrote them off as a bad idea.  This year, I do believe they’ve increased slightly and, with the added advantage of the lawn now being smaller because of the new Bronze Bed, they seem more impressive.  I think I’ll add a few more in the autumn.

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In the Grass Bed there is a small patch of unidentified tulips in amongst the forget me nots, with some further bulbs to come.  IMG_6906

In the Drive Bed the Erysimum Ivory Giant originally grown from seed are just starting to flower again.  They got a little leggy but I cut them back hard and they seem to have bounced back.

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Also destined for the Drive bed are these Pulmonaria Blue Ensign.  I bought a pot last year and then divided the clump into three but never got around to planting them out.  I think they’re work well with the Erysimum and paler Narcissis in the Drive Bed – if I can actually get round to getting them in!

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In the predominantly white Shady Bed, two newcomers this year – dainty Anemone Blanda

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and rather more thuggish white honesty (Lunaria annua).

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And to finish a delight of daffs:IMG_6940

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With thanks as ever to Carol at May Dreams Gardens who host all of our GBBD.