Six On Saturday: Exuberance begins

Ping! Pow! Pop! That is what the garden has done this week. Sunshine and showers (and a small amount of hail) have turbo-charged the growth of the perennials. All is looking good for the summer time splash. The rainy days were a welcome change from April’s drought and gave me time to plan a tulip buying extravaganza to rival that of the seventeenth century. Forgive me, I am getting over-excited. Here’s my six.


Geranium phaeum.  One of my favourites for this time of year.  It reminded me of the move to this house four years ago.  The borders were empty and I brought with me a small selection of self seeders and spreaders to give me some bare bones to build on.  The velvety phaeum was one and it has done its job, I divided them last year and have a decent sized number now.  A reliable doer.



I couldn’t bring it with me, but I always enjoyed the weigela that came with the old garden.  I didn’t know the variety but I thought weigela ‘Florida Variegata’ looked a good match and it is.  


The plum trees have been pruned, one by myself and one by the expert.  Here they are.  Ailing plum is doing okay at the moment, the second one looks much better for the prune.  The photo is taken from the other side to give a better view of the open structure of the middle.  I can confidently say the blackbirds can swoop through the middle any time they want.


The Prop’s tiarella from last week prompted me to search out mine.  They are in a dark corner on the way to compost heap, squeezed in between the gooseberries and the blackcurrants.  What a delight, they shone through the gloom.  This is ‘Emerald Gaiety’.


When I say the borders here were empty when we arrived I should say there was plenty of weed clearing to be done.  Amongst the weeds was a self sown aquilegia vulgaris, the common columbine.  I left it there and over three years it has settled itself into a very happy clump about a metre high.  It’s now too dominant for my liking and  distracts the eye from the nearby irises.  It’s time to find it a new home. 


The last of the tulips have opened.  These grow in a corner that heads towards the shady cold north border so they are always the last to show up.  There should be a good show of ‘Angelique’ combined with ‘Spring Green’ and ‘China Town’.  But the combination is thinning out and needs revitalising.  Hence the great tulip search.  For this year there are just enough coming through to make a good display.  

Like Mr P I shall be potting on some seedlings this weekend.  Also on the to-do list is planting out the dwarf french beans, some more lettuce and rocket and the February sown sweet peas.  I shall continue to urge the three remaining lupins on to their next stage and take a look at the no-show Californian poppy seed tray, again.  Happy gardening to you all, I hope you get some time to catch up with the links on Mr P’s site.  It’s going to be a busy weekend.  


27 thoughts on “Six On Saturday: Exuberance begins

    • The geranium is an early flowerer, May to June, sometimes a second show if it is cut back promptly. But I think it is worth it, it’s very happy in partial shade. The foam flower was new to the garden last year and I have it a dark shady corner, slightly out of the main garden. It is always a good surprise to come across it and it does light up the space.

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  1. I love this aerial flower of Tiarella: rather in the shade I think?
    My weigela is also flowered but darker pink in colour : I have not added it to my Six this week because there are already so many things to introduce …
    Good luck with gardening for the weekend!

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  2. Why on Earth was the plum pruned after foliating? It should be pruned while dormant in winter, or after vascular activity has slowed down in summer. Spring is the time that it should not be pruned.

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    • That’s interesting. Here the advice is only to prune plums when they are in growth to avoid silver leaf disease. In the past I have pruned in summer usually August, but this year I went for an early prune which is suggested as Spring. I don’t think anyone would prune Plums in winter in the UK. Is this a climate difference between us?

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      • Winter is naturally the best time for pruning most species, particularly deciduous species, because it is when they are either dormant or as close to dormant as they will be. Evergreen species that are sensitive to frost should not be pruned in winter because such pruning stimulates new growth that is even more susceptible to frost. Once blossoms start to bloom, it is too late to prune, even for trees that really need it.

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  3. I think I’m seriously falling for Tiarella and have a perfect (and empty) spot for them. I feel an order is about to happen.

    There’s a soft gentleness about the tulips in your final photograph, and I have to say, I love the pot sitting behind them.

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    • Thank you, it is the softer end of my tulip colours and I was trying to blend them in with the pot. I tried some brighter colours around the corner but I don’t enjoy them half as much. I can recommend the tiarella for shady spots, it is doing very well.


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