What a week! From balmy spring warmth to icy snow showers and freezing winds. There was a slight frost this morning. This was also the week the pergola was installed and the foxes had a fight in the rosemary bush, I think the rosemary came off worse. There were some brave tulips on show and the plum blossom appeared. Here’s six from the garden.
The first tulips to appear in this garden are ‘World Friendship’. They’ve last well over about three years but I think this is the year to top them up. They have a softer yellow colour, not too bright and I think they work well with the thalia.
The plum blossom opened up at the beginning of the week, only to be thrashed about by a vicious north wind. Here’s hoping some of the blossom makes it through to fruit.
The glorious sunshine of last weekend saw me tackle two gardening jobs on the same day! A good clear out of the potting shed followed by a clear out of this end of the thin border. Previously home to rampant blackberries, generously giving too much fruit to use, a first thinning out was achieved. I know I said I wouldn’t, but I do have a few white dahlias that used to live in pots. They have overwintered and I think for this year at least they will go in here along with some summer annuals while I mull over a permanent plan.
I am a purist for the simple yellow primroses, but somehow I have inherited this dark red one. It has made a successful appeal to stay in the garden.
The new green growth of the grass melica altissima ‘Alba’ caught my eye this week. Fresh and vibrant, it adds a good band of colour to the back of a north facing border. In the summer lovely dancing stems of white flowers sway in the breeze. I can’t wait.
The pergola was installed amid howling winds and snow showers. The guys very cleverly built the new one whilst using the old one to support the vine. I kept the warming cups of coffee going and marvelled at the progress from inside in the warm.
It’s a beautiful blue sky morning here, cold but bright. Let’s hope we have done with the cruel weather, no more frosts please, it’s time to will those seeds into germination. The Propagator hosts this weekly gathering, stop by and see if you can catch him in the garden.
The garden has been surging forward in this last week of sunshine. But hold on, there is cold weather to come. April can be a cruel month. Even so, gardeners are getting busy and anticipation is high. Here’s six from this week’s garden.
The thalia have arrived, my favourites. But no sooner do they open out then the slugs slither up the stems and nibble the flowers. Sad, but I have learnt to shrug my shoulders, sigh and move on.
I am showing the muscari again! I had some left overs in pots, awaiting an opening in the garden. I have now put them into a shadier border and the colour looked so strong in the shadows. I’ll get away with it this year because they benefited from the warmth of a sunny corner before I planted them out. Next year I might find that this spot is just too shady for them.
The perennials are really bulking up and the lovely leaves of thalictrum ‘Black Stockings’ look great. The dark stems are already quite striking. These are in a shady spot too and do very well.
The seed potatoes are chitting away but back in February I planted up three or four in an old compost bag and left them in the greenhouse. The top shoots have just come through so another layer of compost will be added. I might have some early new potatoes in April.
The tomato seeds sown in early March have been potted on. These are destined for the greenhouse. For the moment they are in the spare bedroom.
The pergola project is moving forward with very little sucking in of breath! There is a possibility it will be done next week. In anticipation of a smart new pergola, a smart new garden table was purchased. The old pergola is doing a good impersonation of being a solid structure, but the truth is hidden. All four support legs are rotting away. Now I am anticipating the sunny months to come. In my dreams I also see a trachycapus fortunei swaying in the breeze. Does anyone have experience of growing those in pots?
I am, as always, delighted to compliment The Propagator on his dedication to SOS. All the links to this joyful meme will be found there. Wishing everyone a great gardening weekend.
It would be very easy to take a despondent tone at this time of year. Cold, drab days and a certain browness to the garden can cause the gardening sap to sink. The garden has other ideas though and regardless of the gardener the plants just get on with it. This week’s six shows signs of progress as well as the need for some jobs to be started.
First, one of my occasional moans about the local wildlife. It’s usually the fox but it could be the fat Persian cat that wobbles through every now and then, either way something has taken a branch out of the beautifully rounded daphne, leaving me with a hole in the middle.
Then a job to be done. I got ahead with the pruning of the grape vine because the pergola is becoming unsteady and the plan was to deal with it over winter. Oh how time flies! This week I noticed that one leg of the pergola has collapsed down a few inches. This is a ‘must do soon’ job. But I shall need to find someone to install a new pergola. No doubt there will be a sucking in of the breath as I am told about the long waiting list I will have to join.
But this is a positive post and it is most definitely cheering to see signs of new growth. The bergenia is in bud.
I hope I am not alone in having one, possibly two, plants that generally get mistreated, left to their own devices, ignored. This is a very old cordyline. Left in a pot for well over twenty years. Poor thing. It doesn’t get protected overwinter, as you can see by the brown leaf ends, and occasionally it leaves a sign to say ‘Don’t forget me’. This year a leader has died away but two new shoots are coming through. Tough love seems to be working.
More signs of growth and a call to action. The new growth on the phlox has started. This is always my cue to deal with the remaining browness of the garden. The temperatures seem to be slowly on the rise which is another encouragement.
Snowdrops and hellebores continue to fill out. I spotted some leaves from the tête-à-tête daffodils and the odd tulip leaf is making an appearance. The primroses bear the promise of spring beautifully: cheerfulness abounds.
Don’t forget to take a peak at all the other SOS gardens. The Propagator holds the keys to the garden gates. All welcome!