Six On Saturday: Green is a good feeling

The week here has ended with a string of cold nights but thankfully no frost. The carrot and parsnip sowings remained under cloches, the potatoes are just peeking through and the onions are looking good. I have finally, after five sowings, managed to germinate two more mange tout seeds. Hopefully the May sowings will be more successful. French beans and courgettes have just been sown. Here’s six things I noticed in the garden this week.

One

The view from the kitchen was a very verdant green this morning as the rising sun shone through the persimmon tree. Just behind the persimmon the fig tree is just breaking into leaf. Further back the trees that surround this garden are also greening up. It gave an uplifting zing of freshness to the start of the day.

Two

One of the ‘Cairo’ tulips had been niggling away at me and I finally got round to sending off a photo to the bulb supplier with the question ‘Is this a healthy tulip’. The response was immediate. A phone call advising me that the stripes were due to tulip mosaic virus and I should remove the bulb and as much of the surrounding soil as possible. There is much to admire in the flower colouration but it is sensible to act on the advice to prevent the spread of the virus. Those darling aphids are to blame. The tulip stem will decorate the kitchen. The bulb will be disposed of.

Three

I am sure that if it wasn’t for SOS I would miss out on a number of things happening in the garden. I have admired the wood anemones that others have shown over the last few weeks but only yesterday did I remember that I too have some in the garden. It’s a small group that are almost hidden by the hellebores and the relentless snowberry. Here they are peaking through.

Four

As the tulips go over, so Irises should be filling in the spaces. But my division of last year has not been very successful. Thanks to Fred and to the good folk on twitter I have been reminded that these are I. germanica. I love them for their height and colour. I have now found a source for a restock and next year’s borders will be jammed with them again.

Five

Down at the veg plot end of the garden, on the way to the compost bins, I pass by a group of tiarellas. They rarely die down over winter and usually end up with a sprawl of scruffy untidy old foliage. I gave them a tidy last week and entirely by coincidence this week they have produced a flurry of flowers.

Six

More green to end on. While the mange tout have been frustrating the lettuce are chugging along very well. I have some in the greenhouse growing away, and two trays of potted on seedlings waiting to go outside when the night temperatures settle down. I can pick leaves now from these trays which is what I must do this weekend.

This weekend I will pulling tree seedlings out, cutting back tulip stems and beginning to pull out the forget-me-nots before they drop too much seed. The bindweed has appeared at the very back of the garden, a sure sign that the soil, even in that shady place, is warming up. Goody! Mr P will host as usual, probably run, and perhaps sow seeds. Rain, however, does not seem to be on the cards!

17 thoughts on “Six On Saturday: Green is a good feeling

  1. I don’t remember seeing overviews of your garden. The view from the kitchen is very pretty and I can confirm that my fig tree is at the same stage as yours. Most welcome for the Iris, thanks to that you have an id°.

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  2. Your garden view is lovely, how nice to have that borrowed landscape. I would not have thought anything about the tulip, it looks just like one of the old Dutch ones to me. Nice Tiarella, I just don’t seem to be able to keep these plants though they are so lovely. Maybe my soil is just too heavy and wet during the winter.

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    • The borrowed trees are wonderful, making the garden go on and on. Maybe it is the wet soil that makes tiarella difficult. Mine are in fairly dry shade where they seem to be tough as old boots!

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  3. Lovely! At least you have germination out doors – I can only count on radishes at the moment, nonetheless, I did plant our my snow peas (is that the same as mange tout? If so, what variety do you grow?) I am hoping that this next week, though it will be wet, will be warmer – temps in the fifties (10-15 C), so I may see the peas start to come up. I start itching to garden in February, where when I lived in Seattle, I would plant many cool weather things in February. Here the ground s still frozen sometimes into April.

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    • My out door sowings failed! My germinations are from the sunny windowsill in the house. Snow peas and mange tout are the same. I am growing ‘Snow Wind’, which is billed as self supporting, needing no nets. When planted out the spacing is a maximum of 2 inches between each plant so that they scramble over each other. We shall see! I have just planted another row outside as night temperatures here are about 10 degrees centigrade. Oh how much patience you must have to have – but if the ground is still frozen you can’t do much else!

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      • Luckily the ground is not frozen, but the chill remains in the air. We may have daytime highs approaching 16C soon, and if the past is any indication, it will suddenly become unbearably hot for the rest of spring and summer. Then I can start thinking about tomatoes!

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  4. Those little anemones are so cool, and so white. I really should try more anemones. There is only one Japanese anemone here. It blooms for autumn, but is not very pretty. It is very pale pink, sort of between white and pink, but really looks like dirty white. Do most anemones bloom in autumn and summer, . . . or about now?

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    • Japanese anemones, taller and in various shades of pink and the white ‘Honorine Joubert’ flower in the autumn. The spring anemones are either blanda or nemerosa. Blanda types are common at the supermarket flower shelves whilst the nemerosa are generally from woodland plant nurseries, they spread by rhizomes which I am hoping will gradually happen here.

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      • So, more bloom in spring than in autumn? None of the anemones are common here, but Japanese anemone might be the more common sort. I have never seen Anemone blanda directly.

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