It seems extraordinary that by next weekend the days will be getting shorter again. The last few weeks have seen everything happening at breakneck speed; growth, flowering and going over, but even now there are some plants that still seem to be emerging from winter. At a glance, the garden is very pink, dominated by self sown wild Foxgloves, Geranium palmatum and Sweet Williams. Look closer and there’s much more going on.
Seedlings. Last summer I went to a plant sale at Rosemoor and bought a plant of Roscoea which seemed very reasonable, remarking on it to the seller who said they were all seedlings and easy to produce. I took it home, planted it, enjoyed the flowers and collected the seed. They were sown in September and put under the greenhouse bench. A week or so ago they started germinating. I sowed seed of another variety too, I think possibly ‘Monique’, and they are germinating too. Oddly, some of those seedlings are white, lacking chlorophyll. I’ve got seedlings of Polygonatum mengzense tonkinensis coming up too, again from my own seed. Very satisfying. So far. Today I squoze a few seeds of Fuchsia juntacensis from their sticky orange berries and sowed them. I can’t stop myself.
Clematis recta. I was given a plant of this, thought it had died and was given another which I planted, as it turned out, almost on top of the first one, which hadn’t in fact died. The first was purple leaved, the second green. The bicolored clump is now over five feet high and a mass of vanilla scented flowers. I probably should have pushed hazel twigs around it before it came up but had none, so it’s supported inelegantly and ineffectively with canes and string.
I know it’s the middle of June but I have to put a camellia in, this time for foliage. The new growth on quite a number of them is reddish but none compare with ‘Night Rider’.
My first Dahlia of the year is one that I bought as a small plant a few weeks ago at a Hardy Plant Society sale. It is called ‘Taratahi Ruby’ and looks like it’s going to be a good’n. At this stage I could do with it putting on some growth; I think it was very hungry in its pot and I’ve been feeding it up with high strength liquid feed.
Peony. Given me earlier this summer by a neighbour who has gone into a home and won’t be coming back, this has taken a week to open out to sumptuous very double pinkness. I’m fairly sure it’s ‘Sarah Bernhardt’; confirmation from anyone who grows it would be good. Quite tall, very top heavy.
As far from Dahlias and Peonies as you can get and still be a flowering plant is Polygonatum verticillatum rubrum. Dan Hinkley enthuses about its dark purple infused stems and leaves emerging in spring and says the young shoots are eaten by the hill tribes of the Himalayas. Previous generations of Himalayan hill tribes have died and been reincarnated as slugs in my garden seemingly, as a result of which I didn’t get to enjoy the young shots half as much as they did.
One stem is five feet tall and the clump is slowly spreading. There are only a few flowers open at any one time; fully expanded they are 7mm long and a hard colour to describe; grey perhaps, or beige. Honestly, I do wonder why I grow some of the things I do.
I think I’ll make all next week’s six vegetables. It’s only mid June and we’re cropping a good range of stuff. Now I’m off to see what else this increasingly diverse meme has thrown up, it’s over to The Propagator we go.
I was contemplating joining in with Garden Bloggers Bloom day; maybe next time, not much happening just now.