CLEMATIS AND LITTLE GEMS

After last week's weather, which was mixed to say the least, it was good to be busy in the garden this week.  And busy I certainly was except for the afternoon I sloped off to the garden centre and went shopping instead.

While the garden is looking a little tidier, it's still not looking very floriferous, so I'm opening with this photo of the front garden, because the horses were posing for me so nicely.  (Actually I think they are hoping someone will come by with something nice to eat.)    


The other reason for including this photo it that it is the home to this week's number 1.

 

1. Bergenia Schneekristall

After last week's discussion of the merits of Bergenia, I saw this at the garden centre and decided it would make a good addition to the garden.  I've had a few problems over the years with plants (mainly mail order) which weren't as advertised, so it was good to choose something in flower and know it was just right.


2 Early Spring border

Here's Lord Byron sunbathing in the Spring sunshine last week, with the border of early Spring flowers paying homage at his feet.


The Hellebores are fading a little, but doing it in a very graceful way.



3. Little Gems

Some of the smaller spring bulbs are less familiar to me. The first of these is  chionodoxa forbesii -  reliably coming back each year.  It is a pretty shade of pale pink only someone seems to have forgotten to tell my camera that.



Another of these little Spring jewels is Puschkinia Libanotica.  This one is the washed out pale blue that it appears in the photograph.





4. 'Fun' with Clematis


Clematis 'Polish Spirit' syn Morrisonii,* has well and truly outgrown it's support and has been treated to a giant 2.5m high obelisk.  I hope it's suitably appreciative.

* Purchased for a nominal sum from Morrisons


When discussing Bergenia last week, I went off on a little tangent mentioning Christopher Lloyd's book 'The Well-Tempered Garden'.  I made the mistake of thinking - 'it's a while since I read that book, I really ought to re-read it'.  It opened at a chapter on pruning clematis.  Group 2 (trim lightly) could, as a counsel of perfection, be taken off it's support, all the entwining tendrils snipped through and the long lengths laid out on the ground.  The dead portions, of which there are quite a few as the plant produces more growth than it is inclined to need, can then be cut out, before the stems are reintroduced to the support.  Christopher implied that you'd have to be mad to want to that.


So I did it , and this is the result.


5. Strawberries under Glass (or why planting 10 strawberry plants took me all day)

Last year the surplus Strawberry plants that I didn't have room for in the garden did so well in the greenhouse that I decided to repeat the experiment on a larger scale.  

You know those jobs that just grow and grow?  I ordered some fruit trees.  The supplier also sold strawberries, so I might as well order a few of those since I was paying the delivery charge anyway.  Once they arrived, I then had to dig up some of the strawberry patch to make room for them.  The dug up strawberries then needed to be put in pots.  The pots were occupied by almost certainly dead pelargoniums which need to be turfed out first. And so it went on.  

But I think I've bored you enough.


6 Daffodil Jumble

When you take over an old garden, if you are lucky, you will inherit some lovely mature plants.  You will also, almost certainly inherit the Daffodil Jumble.  At some point in the past a previous owner will have bought one of those giant nets of mixed Daffs and liberally sprinkled them around to take you by surprise.




Some surprises will be nice

Others, when you declare your intention of digging them up, will be described as 'cheerful' by your spouse.



That's all I have time for this week.  Wishing you some good gardening weather this weekend and thanks as always to The Propagator who hosts Six on Saturday.


Comments

  1. I am a great fan of bergenias - mainly because they grow so very well for us here. I especially like those which give winter interest with the deep purple/mahogany foliage. Re Christophe Lloyd: I was an avid fan of his writings and had read all his books before visiting Great Dixter. As we left, the lady in the ticket booth realised my utterances were angry but, thankfully, couldn't decipher my Irish as I told my son that that man wrote fiction!

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    1. I do like the way he writes, but I'm not sure I really enjoy the garden. What disappointed you?

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  2. I love the photo of your front garden with the horses, and Lord Byron! To add to the Bergenia debate, I like the miniature ones best, they are tidier, I have Bergenia 'flirt' which is diminutive and has lovely mahogany-red leaves. Your white one looks very tidy and pretty too. I totally feel your pain re the strawberry job, it's an endless series of cascading tasks sometimes, but well done you for getting it done!

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    Replies
    1. The white one is nice and neat looking. I will look up 'flirt'.

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    2. I will hopefully feature it on SOS when it flowers.

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  3. You have some impressive statues. I love the photo of Lord Byron in the early Spring border. Well done with the clematis. I still have a few to tackle if they've survived (I'm not very god with clematis).

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    1. I've had a few clematis die on me, but I've always blamed the plant and not the gardener 🤣

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  4. My library branch has rhododendrons and camellias around two sides of the corner building, with bergenia and vinca as ground cover. It's the bright pink kind, and it's so pretty. I don't have the right place for it though.

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  5. It's all the stuff left unsaid when something like that daffodil gets described as 'cheerful', the implied slight to practically every other plant in the garden. Been there.

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    1. I also think he's worried that I'll ask him to do the digging up if he admits it needs to go.

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  6. I've got a few daffodil jumbles. Most are lovely but they include that very messy double one called 'Rip Van Winkle' which is quite hard to love...

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    1. I know the one you mean - and I agree its hard to love. It's not just the look of the flower, it's the jumbo size of the yellow trumpet one that jars so.

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  7. Replies
    1. Thanks. I planted them about four years ago so they are getting nicely established.

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  8. I need obelisks like this! It's hard to find it in France. They are ugly most of the time or very expensive.
    Are these your horses? I also have horses from time to time in my backyard but they are not mine,. They enjoy eating my grass and I enjoy their beauty

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    1. They are made by 'Tom Chambers' who seem to sell a range of plant supports. Perhaps you can track down that make on line?
      Not my horses, but in the field in front of the house so we get to watch them.

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  9. Hellebores do die well (the flowers anyway, not so much the leaves).

    The Bergenia is a nice one - good choice!

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    1. Thanks Andrew . The Hellebore leaves are definitely their weak point.

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