Six on Saturday – 20/5/2017

One. I was going to start with a picture of dead cabbages, the rootfly having munched their way through two rows. But it was raining and going up the allotment in the rain to take a picture of dead cabbages didn’t do it for me.

Two. Papaver bracteata. Every year this monster astonishes me anew. One day I will try and propagate it so I can give a few away. It sets no seed, so it would be root cuttings when it’s dormant. But when it’s dormant I forget all about it. With the petals out flat this flower is more than 9inches wide.

Papaver bracteata-5
Papaver bracteata

Three. Maianthemum bifolium. I suppose my garden is about evenly split between shade and sun and I try to take full advantage of the range of conditions that gives me. Maianthemum bifolium is a very understated plant that wouldn’t appeal to everyone but which I like just as much as the big brash poppy.

Maianthemum bifolium


Four. Polygonatum x hybridum ‘Betburg’ is another woodlander, a variant of Solomon’s Seal which starts the season with strongly purple flushed leaves and stems, the leaves gradually turning green. I think I have seen it hold its leaf colour better than mine is, perhaps I have an inferior form. Polygonatums get sawflies, like my gooseberries, but whereas the gooseberries have been worse than they’ve ever been, the Polygonatums, which are usually shredded, are clear so far. Mind, I’ve squashed a couple of adults and rubbed off a couple of clutches of eggs.

Polygonatum x hybridum ‘Betberg’



Five. There’s a fair amount of sanctimonious crap talked about what is and what isn’t a weed. Welsh Poppy is a weed. It’s a pretty weed and I don’t mind having a few of them around the garden but it seeds prodigiously (Can someone please tell me why slugs never, ever browse the seedlings) and comes up in the middle of almost everything where it is hardest to winkle out. I try to dead head every single one but I suspect I have fifty years supply of seed in the ground already. I read somewhere recently that they’ve now decided it’s much more closely related to true poppies than to the altogether better mannered Meconopsis.

Meconopsis cambrica 

Six. A fern to finish. I grow lots of them. They’re all my favourites at one time or another. This is my favourite today. Athyrium otophorum ‘Okanum’.

Athyrium otophorum ‘Okanum’


Posted as part of The Propagator’s six on Saturday meme. He doesn’t strike me as a man who likes to take his frustrations out on deceased individuals of the species Equus ferus caballus, so please join in, the more the merrier.

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