Six on Saturday – 8/6/2019

Getting pictures yesterday for todays post wasn’t a runner, it rained pretty relentlessly all day. My water tank is full, to look on the bright side. So I went out early(ish) this morning with my camera. Not a good time of day for taking pictures here, too many areas in shadow and the light rather harsh. It’s already clouding over, I could go and take them again. Or later in the day. Decisions decisions.

One.
As you come up our drive there is a rounded shrub that you don’t want to pay too much attention to or you’ll run into something. It’s interesting but hardly head turningly so. It is currently in full flower and strongly honey scented. It is Ozothamnus hookeri. Much of what is sold under this name is the hybrid with O. rosmarinifolius, a chunkier plant altogether. You have to get in pretty close to see what’s going on with this one.

Two.
Next up is just humble Dianthus deltoides. I was amused when watching a piece on Chris Beardshaw’s Chelsea garden that the commentator picked up on a plant growing between paving across the path and thereby slowing you down and promoting mindfulness. And I just thought mine was maiden pink growing in my path. I may take another picture later when the flowers are actually out. I’ve found this a very useful path edge plant.
SOS1024

Three.
Baptisia australis. All the lupins I’ve ever tried to grow have been destroyed by slugs yet Baptisia doesn’t get touched. If I could keep a lupin alive long enough I’d try to hybridise them, they look quite similar, I’m assuming they’re cousins. They’re must surely be a gene in it that could be transferred to Lupins. Tricky colour to capture, I’ve been fiddling with the settings, trying to get it roughly right.

Four.
I went off to Tregrehan rare plant fair last sunday and escaped fairly lightly. It’s such a social occasion; I see any number of planty people from my employed past that I won’t see again until next year. It’s a difficult balance to strike when you’re desperate not to miss out on rare horticultural treasures but also want to catch up on all the gossip from the world you half left behind by retiring. Polygonatum curvistylum was one new acquisition. It’s gone into my revamped shady area.
SOS1027

Five.
The conservatory is looking colourful at the moment.

Six.
The ghastliness that is the replacement of a section of our boundary hedge with a fence has begun. Credit where it’s due, they haven’t trashed the garden, but the path to the front drive has been muddy all week and our neighbours are sitting in their conservatory looking straight into our garden like they’re in the royal box at the theatre. I really don’t feel inclined to perform for their benefit. She even had the gall to say she liked being able to look into our garden and wouldn’t mind if it stayed open like it is. Fat chance! The boundary line is the middle of the soil bank so the fence will go just our side of the 30 inch drop, with a dry stone retaining wall on their side. We have at least another week of this to endure, probably two.

Hey ho, the sun is shining. Stuff needs potting, stuff needs moving, stuff needs tidying, stuff needs watering. You know the routine; links to other sixes from the Prop’s comments section. Do join in if you don’t already, we all love visiting each others gardens and to visit dozens, worldwide, in a single day, without starting the car, is a bit the stuff dreams are made of.

33 thoughts on “Six on Saturday – 8/6/2019

  1. I believe you identified my dianthus deltoides last year. I love it. It has spread out quite a bit now but … do the spreading bits eventually root into the ground? At the moment I can lift it all up. I’d like to move some it around the garden.
    Sending you positive thoughts whilst the border work is being completed. Polygonatum curvistylum looks like a charmer.

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    1. I don’t think it roots much, if at all, but it does produce seedlings freely enough and it can be hard to tell whether they are separate plants or rooted bits of the original. Worst thing about boundary works is loss of privacy.

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  2. I liked the “mindfulness” in the garden path………we all need more mindfulness! We just finished up replacing our fence and now that the new one is in I will never replace it again. It will have to fall down! I envy your conservatory………the neighbor really enjoys your garden for the time being!

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    1. It’s funny, I spend a lot of time on the garden and we get very few visitors to show it off to, which I generally love to do, but I find myself feeling just as strongly the other way, that I really don’t want this particular neighbour to get a look. It would be a natural thing to invite them for a look round while the boundary is open, but I wont. On mindfulness, it seems a shame that you would have to introduce contrivances to get someone to slow down and look properly when going around a garden and probably futile; if they’re not really interested I doubt tripping them up will help.

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      1. I love your blog Jim but my ipad WILL NOT let me make a comment. I don’t know why. So I hope I am contacting you here in this box. I agree with that silly bit about slowing you down by tripping you up. Just silly.

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      2. That seems to have come through as a normal comment. I never know whether the commentators on these shows are conveying what the designer intended or putting their own spin on it. First and foremost it’s what the producer thinks a tv audience will be entertained by, driven by a sponsor whose only concern is maximum exposure for their brand. I’m finding this blog meme to be a much richer source of ideas for plants and design features than I’ve ever found garden show coverage to be.

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  3. How old is your Baptisia australis? Isn’t it a glorious colour. I planted a little 9cm newly bought plant this year, and have just one stem. You came away with a treasure from the plant sale, and no doubt enjoyed seeing friends.

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    1. I think the Baptisia is around four years old now. It is a lovely colour and it contrasts sharply with the yellow Berberis behind it. The Tregrehan plant sale is quite special, it attracts buyers from France and Belgium as well as far afield in the UK. Great to have it on my doorstep.

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  4. Nice close-up of Ozothamnus. At the beginning with the thumbnails, I thought it was a creamed asparagus on a plate … 😂 (I have the excuse … it’s time for dinner )
    Elegant Polygonatum, will be very well in the shade

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  5. I loathe the top of a trellis fence that separates us from one set of neighbours. Not so bad in the summer when the jasmine takes over but in the winter I find it all a bit awkward. I sympathize, though the Royal Box ‘fat chance’ comment made me chuckle (sorry). Hope it’s all done with soon. I like the new Polygonatum curvistylum.

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    1. She refused to have a fence higher than 4 feet and refused to have a style that you couldn’t see through. I can however do what I please on my own side of the fence when it’s up and will do what I have to to get the same level of privacy back as I had before.

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  6. I sympathise with the loss of privacy. We had to replace the hedge that screens us from the street three years ago. As the main part of the garden is at the front of the house it left us completely exposed. Although we received very many lovely comments about our (or my, as the Non-Gardener would stress) garden I hated that people could look in. The new Beech hedge is growing well and is beginning to offer some degree of privacy this year. Neighbours are complaining that they can’t see what is going on in the garden so well. Result!

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  7. I have the opposite problem. We have a nice 8ft wooden fence between our gardens but they planted a rampant willow tree right against it. It grows at least 15 feet a year and is dense and shrubby obscuring the view over fields. They hack it back but each year it’s more vigorous grrr. Wrong tree wrong place. I’m going to try Baptisia cos I gave up on lupins due to slugs.

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    1. I had a look at the Baptisia yesterday and could see almost no S&S damage at all. I saw a nice tall yellow presumed Linaria in a garden centre today which might also be a lupin substitute; stupidly I didn’t look at its name. Willow is a beast; some people will think 15 feet is an exaggeration and I’m thinking it’s probably spot on.

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  8. Neighbours huh! My neighbour put up a balcony when we were away a couple of years ago that not only overlooks our garden, but also into my upstairs bedroom! I am sure she didn’t get planning permission and I am sure she ought to have done, but I hate falling out with neighbours so have learned to just have the blind down on that particular window. Baptisia australis might make it onto my list if it really is S&S resistant. This wet weather has brought them out in abundance!

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    1. One of the reasons I want privacy in the garden is so I can go out at night with a torch to kill slugs, without feeling I’m being watched, and judged. My Baptisia is virtually untouched by s&s, with nearby Dahlias savaged.

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  9. What is a soil bank? Is that where the elevation changes, as in a terrace, or embankment?
    I wrote about fences a while ago. I really dislike them, but my former neighbors in town really wanted them.

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    1. We are separated from our neighbours by what used to be the boundary of a field. As it is now they are about 30 inches lower than us, separated by a soil bank that from our side was about 30 inches high, so 5 feet viewed from their side. I suspect it was originally built with a dry stone facing and that the stone was pinched for use elsewhere. It wouldn’t have been much of a barrier to livestock. I’ll ask the man who farmed it when I see him.

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  10. One of my father’s favourite sayings (and he had a few) was, ‘Neighbours should be abolished’. If only. Understand completely your feeling of being on the stage and hope the torture is over soon. Your conservatory is certainly colourful and must a wonderful place to sit- hopefully out of the neighbour’s sight.

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    1. I bet there were a few more of your fathers sayings that ended “should be abolished”. I’m trying hard to be positive about it, planning what I’m going to do with the space I’ve gained. Considering the conservatory faces north, the Pelargoniums do remarkably well and give lots of colour.

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  11. Annoying business with the fence. If the photographic evidence wasn’t enough, I now have first hand witness reports that your garden is lovely, MIL and FIL suitably impressed. I have dianthus deltoodes ‘brilliancy’ best year for it so far, despite me moving it several times. I grew about 80 plants from seed back when I knew no restraint. It is an excellent edge plant…

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    1. I got seed of Dianthus deltoids ‘Arctic Fire’, white with dark centre, for variety. I had a lovely time showing off to MIL & FIL, it’s probably a good thing the opportunities to do so are limited. I’m just beginning to see the fence saga as an opportunity to do something new, in particular to give us somewhere for climbers. Every cloud…

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  12. Your neighbour’s comment about watching you made me laugh, as did your reaction to it. What an odd situation you’ve found yourself. May it soon be resolved. the flowers from #1 bush are truly remarkable. I don’t think I’d call them pretty, but they are interesting & more so because they have a good scent. Also love the path interruption w/the foxglove gate lowered to stop the pellis from trampling the dianthus. A great Six as always.

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