Six On Saturday: Signs of things to come

This is a fatal time of year for me. The Christmas break takes me away from the garden and usually cold weather keeps me away. But SOS calls and even the briefest of walks around the borders reveals that sitting with one’s feet up is not what is needed. Those weeds are looking smugly healthy whilst other more valued plants are in need of a trim or a primp. There are more leaves to be taken off the hellebores and I spotted one or two wayward rose branches that need to be taken out. I don’t have the excuse of cold weather, in truth it has been quite mild here but the ground is very wet so I will have tread carefully. Here’s what else I found.



The clematis armandii ‘Apple Blossom’ is fattening up very nicely.  It is growing rampantly in one direction but is a little bald in the other.  One side receives much more sun and it is the sunnier side that is worse for wear.   Perhaps it will re-balance this summer.


A favourite photo for this time of year, the new growth of the sedum is pushing through.  The old stems can stay on a little longer though.


A visit to the greenhouse paid some dividends as the overwintering pelagonium had put out new flowers.  It was quite a timely visit as the pellie is clearly sitting below a leak point from the roof and some of its leaves were gently rotting away. On the downside all the salvia nemorosa ‘Caradonna’ cuttings have rotted off.


There was some more joy in the greenhouse. Fred, a long time SOSer had sent me seeds of anchusa capensis back in September and I sowed just a few then.  Three of them came good and are currently looking promising.  I’ll be sowing the rest in the coming months.  Thanks Fred.


That great herald of spring euphorbia characias subsp. wulfenii is once again having mixed fortunes in the border.  I have four of them planted centrally in the long border to give an early blast of lime green but one of them always plays up. These two plants are about a metre apart but something is having a dramatic impact on the growth of one of them.  I will soldier on but I think they are not very fond of my heavy soil and the wet winter is doing them no favours.


Always reliable in providing a great mound of evergreen structure is this sage.  It came with the garden and every year I give it a thorough prune.  The compost heap smells wonderful for few days.

Happy New Year to everyone, the long month of January has arrived and we need to keep our minds focused on the impending arrival of beautiful things.  Seeds to be sown, spring bulbs to be enjoyed and where we would be without a good moan about weeds, slugs and snails.  I’m ready for it all and so is The Propagator, he’s already sown his chilli seeds!


14 thoughts on “Six On Saturday: Signs of things to come

  1. I love blue flowers so can’t wait to see you anchusa in full bloom! C. armandii is such a beauty, looks like it won’t be long before it is in full flow. The pellie is a nice one, what is it called (don’t say Bob). Happy New Year to you as well 🙂


  2. My clematis armandii is dead last winter.. it didn’t like the cold wind I guess and if I wanted a new one, I should change its place. Another arch to install so….
    Very happy that the Anchusa have grown! They look so healthy (and I can confirm that they are anchusa plants). I still have a shy one in the ground and the others will be self-seeded.


  3. My pellies are not faring well inside this year. It still gets damp in there so I suspect that’s the problem and some of the scented leaved ones have whitefly! I have left several scented leaved ones outside to see how they cope and so far they are looking the healthiest!


  4. I have had similar mixed results with the euphorbia wulfennii and we are on heavy clay soil. The one that has done the best (and now sadly has to come out as its too big for the space) is near a yew hedge and trees. Less sun, but presumably much dryer soil.
    Great Six.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Love the clematis buds. Never noticed how beautiful they are, so’ll have to check my own out. Do you cut back your pellies in winter? I read that I should but they were so beautiful, I didn’t. Seeing yours bloom, I wonder if you did (& hope you didn’t so I don’t feel guilty). Love the sage. What a great ‘comes-with-the-house’ gift.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I didn’t cut the ivy leaf pellies back because they hadn’t put on that much growth. I did cut back the scented leaf ones because they had got quite big. I wasn’t very ruthless so it was a bit of a half hearted go at it.


    • It’s only in its first year and I’m sure I read that it needed no pruning at all and especially not the main stem. The more established ones I’ve seen have been very vigorous so I imagine that eventually it will need a prune and by then I won’t be able tell were the main trunk is!


  6. Isn’t that normal for the Euphorbia? I leave mine until late in the season, and then cut them almost to the ground. I would do it sooner if I thought they were too unsightly in more public spaces.


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