Six on Saturday – 7/7/2018

The hot weather continues and the ordeal of keeping everything watered with it. There’s lots happening and I keep changing my mind about what to include and what to leave out. My first tomatoes made it to the plate but not into the six. I nearly included a clematis but changed my mind. Improbably I have a ridiculously early Cyclamen hederifolium in flower, albeit just one bloom, but the picture was rubbish; out that went.

Filipendula rubra ‘Venusta’. Given to us by a gardening friend whose garden we visited yesterday. She grows it in a sunny and this year very dry border. We grow it in our filled in pond in soil that is still nice and moist. Ours is over a meter tall, hers less than half that. Ours shares the space with Astilbes, but grudgingly.

Geranium pratense ‘Plenum Violaceum’. This came from the same gardening friend as the Filipendula. I didn’t get the camera angle right to show it but behind it is a yellow leaved Berberis which really sets it off.

Hydrangea serrata ‘Fuji no taki’. For a hydrangea this is tiny, I don’t see it ever getting to two feet tall. It has small double flowers which start cream with greenish centres, turns almost pure white except for a cream centre then starts to get pink tones as the flowers go over. In previous years it has been almost completely covered with flowers, there are fewer this year, mainly because of winter damage, rather than drought. This is a plant that has gone the other way to my aforementioned gardening friend.

Dierama pulcherrimum. Another from the same gardening friend. Honestly, she’s a real person, not a euphemism for something shadier. I planted this in the rootzone of a large conifer which means it has to be fed and watered frequently and the conifer grabs 90% of it. It’s doing all right though, it was only planted in autumn last year.

Campanula lactiflora cv. When I told Sue I was going to include this in my six this week because it was looking so good I was brusquely reminded that a few years ago I had tried to remove it but it has survived and regrown. It’s done very well this year, seems to like the hot weather, lovely soft blue colour. It can stay (mutter…. for now). Might be ‘Prichard’s Variety’, or might not.

I don’t know whether Dahlia season has been officially declared open. They seemed to take forever to get going this year but except for a few stragglers have really come on in the last month. I think this red is ‘Garden Wonder’ but I’m not really sure. The purple was supposed to be ‘Amgard Rosie’, which it very definitely is not. I have three rows of Dahlias, grown from seed, on my allotment which are doing so well I am already planning an order for a load more next spring. There will be a Dahlia or more in my sixes for quite some time.

Last week’s car boot with plants was deemed a success and we’re going again shortly. It’ll make a change from bringing in the harvest, which seems to have been the dominant activity this week. Peas, broad beans, blackcurrants, blueberries, raspberries. I’m eating so much fresh fruit and veg I shall either live to be 120 or die of vitamin C poisoning.

For more similar, and very dissimilar fare, head to the comments section at The Propagator, where many portals to other parts of the gardening world will be found, disguised as links.

20 thoughts on “Six on Saturday – 7/7/2018

  1. I have never seen a hydrangea like that. Would it be happy in a container? It would be perfect for my shady courtyard. And if you are fed up of broad beans then send some to me. I love broad beans, though similar to peas, I can eat them fresh from the pod. My mother used to despair of any getting to the table when I was on shelling duty 😀


    1. No reason it wouldn’t grow in a container, provided its needs were met. I must take some cuttings of it, give myself some insurance. I like peas well enough but can pick and shuck for hours without ever eating any.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. A very interesting six, Jim. I like that first photo very much but am wondering about the purple flowers in the background. They make a lovely backdrop for your other plants.


  3. I have never seen a hydrangea like that before – looks a bit like primroses or narcissi at first glance. I think you can officially declare dahlia season open with those vibrant specimens!


    1. Ah Dahlias, I think I can safely say you ain’t seen nothing yet. I love the Hydrangea, I think Hydrangeas suffer from the common ones being overplanted and the less common ones rarely offered for sale. Like a lot of plant groups in fact.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. That Dierama is beautiful! I hadn’t looked at your Six-on-Saturday, glad I have now. Your plants still look so healthy. You may have seen on some of my photos that I only water immediately next to or onto the plants with the result that the horrible clay soil is cracked and like concrete. I keep singing that Unit 4 plus 2 song…….. Concrete and Clay!!! You are too young to remember, I expect.


    1. Would that I were too young to remember Concrete and Clay, now you’ve started an ear worm. I was 12. The scary thing is I still remember most of the words. Just don’t ask me what happened yesterday. The main reason my plants look healthy is that I keep the camera well away from the ones that don’t.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. We scratch each other’s backs; I have probably given her more plants than she’s given me, but who’s counting. Swapping plants might be the very best thing about gardening, says he who was a nurseryman for 30 years.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I have often been tempted by a double geranium. It is lovely. The Angel’s Fishing Rods are just gorgeous to brush past, aren’t they?


    1. I’m very impressed at how the Geranium has shrugged off the drought, I haven’t watered it once. The Dierama is in the wrong place, middle of the border, under a tree. It will get moved, I have a huge Agave to go where it is.


  6. Really interesting 6 this week Jim. That hydrangea is very pretty and delicate. Mine are suffering in this heat as the ‘shady’ corner I planted in is, in fact, rather sunny in the morning….mmmm.


  7. Your top photo is stunning. Love the filipendula w/the astilbe, then Jane’s comment made me go back & look again at the osteospermum. That’s when I noticed the tub of orange-ish flowers behind. Great & subtle colour combo, Jim. Always enjoy your garden.


    1. You’re very kind. I just went back to the picture to see what the tub of orange flowers was about. They’re begonias, peachy colours rather than strident reds and yellows and placed there because I had no where else for a pot that size. It’s interesting how the early morning sun catches that pot, largely misses the Osteos leaving them looking a little blue, and misses the Astilbes and orange Primula down the front. So all the colours change with the time of day, the position of the sun (if it’s out), the angle you’re looking at it all from, whether you’re looking at the real thing or a photo. Photos are great for getting angles you’d never look at the garden from and juxtaposing colours that would normally pass unnoticed. You move around until you have a foreground/background combination that works in a way that you like but that is not how your eye would see it. I like lots of colour, it is uplifting, I try to avoid very obvious colour clashes, beyond that its random and I take the colour combinations as they arise, subtle or striking, much as you would in a natural setting where serendipitous colour schemes arise, usually fleetingly. My starting point is to have plants I like planted in conditions that suit them. I’m quite suspicious of designers and quite suspicious of design, as applied to gardens. In my nursery days I met a lot of them and in many cases their plant knowledge was very poor.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Until you mentioned it, I hadn’t noticed how the light hits the begonia, leaving the osteos in a nice shady bit, then hits the astilbe. An artistic bit of serendipity. As to designers, 2 gardens ago, the design (from the 1970s) was very much a work of art in every season, from every angle. On the other hand, my current neighbour had her front garden redone. The plants are close together & some are real thugs, others won’t survive in that sunny position. As you know, I can’t tell a plum tree from a cherry, but if I know this . . .


      2. I suppose a design is a starting point and the more finished it is at that point, the sooner someone has to deal with its on-going evolution. The less finished it is at that point, the more likely the customer is to feel they have been short changed by the designer. A garden like mine has moved a long way away from its starting point and is all about a slow, continuous evolution. Even the best designs must depend on someone with skill and vision to steer them to where the designer envisioned it being in five or ten years time, and/or a very good brief from the designer as to what the on-going input should be; thin these in a years time, start clipping that when it gets yea high and so on.

        Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s