On Wednesday we had a decent drop of rain, the first useful amount for a while, and when I pulled the curtains in the morning it was as if the windows had been cleaned for the first time in years. I stood there for a while, taking it in, and started noticing things. Come Saturday, said I, I shall do my six from here. Needless to say, now that Saturday is here, I’m backtracking like mad, but the first three qualify.
In the top of my Holboellia was a smudge of purple. It wouldn’t be visible from the ground but it’s a clematis that was probably planted before the Holboellia and refuses to give in. It flowered last year for the first time in years and has managed to do so again. I don’t want to think that this is on a shoot that has pushed up about seven feet from deep gloom and through the tangle of Holboellia stems. I don’t seem to have a name for it but think it may be ‘The President’.
Libertia x butleri. Last week was the second anniversary of Six on Saturday and this was one of my first six on 6th May 2017. This is a hybrid between Libertia ixioides, which I still have though it’s not looking great, and Libertia chilensis, which pops up all over the place and occasionally is allowed to reach flowering size. This was a self sown seedling which must have looked distinct, I may have thought it looked like a hybrid, so I left it and am very glad I did. It is also self sowing and I will probably pot up a few plants to see what I get. (I’ve got a blue one flowering too, can’t remember what it’s called, grew if from seed half a lifetime ago. Might sneak a picture in at the bottom)
Acer palmatum ‘Atropurpureum’. I don’t think this enjoyed last summer at all. When it leafed out this spring it was sparse and it hasn’t grown very strongly since. From the upstairs window I see that it has flowered and is carrying far more fruit than it ever has before. At some point I will grasp the nettle and prune it but looking in my books I find conflicting advice on both if and when. One says late summer/early autumn, the other just before it leafs out in spring. Knowing how Acers bleed in spring, I am inclined towards autumn. One says don’t need pruning, the other acknowledges that in a small garden you’re going to have to sooner or later.
Geum ‘Totally Tangerine’. I reached a point last year where it seemed I was the only person left in the world who was not growing this, so I bought one just as the heat and dry started to bite. It wasn’t happy, but it survived and now it’s strutting its stuff in fine style and I fully understand the hullabaloo around it.
Weigela ‘Kosteriana Variegata’. At least that’s what I think it is, though how different it is from W. florida ‘Variegata’ is not clear. Suffice it to say that it is solidly reliable and attractive in both flower and leaf. It gives very good service for low wages. It’s also growing across the path so a substantial hacking is not far off.
Erodium manescavii. I collected seeds from this last year and have a tray of little plants that I need to pot up, prior to deciding what I do with them. It even managed one self sown seedling. Lovely ferny leaf, good vivid flowers for ages, what’s not to like?
A much less rarified set of plants than last week but that’s the sort of gardener I am. A smorgasbord gardener. I like most of them, love some of them, admire some that I don’t much like. I’m wracking my brains trying to think of a plant without merit and coming up with practically nothing, though there are plenty would be out of place in my garden. I’ll nominate Liverwort and couch grass.
On The Propagator’s blog you will find links to loads of sixers across the globe; we’re an eclectic bunch and each with a story to tell.