It’s been a week of dodging showers or just ignoring them and getting wet. I managed to plant some wood anemones and a few bulbs, about ten, small ones. Bagged my first Camellia picture of the season too, though this is the wrong blog for that and it wasn’t one of mine, unusually.
I was thinking about insects. There seemed to be worryingly few early in the year but by high summer I was very pleased by how many the garden was attracting. I have a hunch that over tidying a garden in winter is not helpful to the overwintering phase of their lifecycles in many cases and this is the beginning of clean-up season. They must go somewhere to get through. Any thoughts?
Begonia grandis evansiana. Linnaeus came up with the binomial system for naming plants because plant names were often ridiculously long. The full name for this is given on the RHS website as Begonia grandis Dryand. subsp. evansiana (Andrews) Irmsch. var. alba hort. That’s the white one. I don’t know which clone the pink belongs to. It’s growing in full but not dense shade and was started last year from bulbils. They were planted out from 9cm pots this spring and are at least 2 feet tall, looking really good at this time of year. It’s hardy in milder areas.
Haemanthus albiflos. I have two reasons for growing this; nostalgia, I grew it as a kid and the name, which I find inordinately pleasing for no reason I could explain to anyone. It’s not hardy, I grow it in a pot.
I’m just going to call this Crataegus prunifolia, though I think it’s been elevated to cultivar status. One of the most ornamental hawthorns, it has big bright red berries and glossy plum like leaves which in good autumn colour areas can be spectacular. It has wicked thorns but not many of them. Blackbirds will eat some of these and knock the rest off onto the ground. I swept them up last year and put them in my allotment compost, the reward for which has been carpets of seedlings around my onions. It’s actually in next door’s garden and mercifully they haven’t cut it down yet. It hangs several feet over the fence.
Cyclamen seedlings. I collected seed from some of my Cyclamen this year and sowed it in early August. I think I may have got a bit carried away. All of these are C. hederifolium but there’s a pot of C. coum coming up like cress too. Oh, there’s another seed tray of C. hederifolium coming up too. The two pots of C. repandum aren’t showing at all yet though. I joined the Cyclamen Society this week, so next year I shall have even more seed to grow. Should have covered these with grit, stop moss growing a bit.
I spotted a couple of butterflies on my Aster so went scurrying indoors for a telephoto lens. Amazingly they were still there when I came back out, they’re in the featured image. While I was snapping away I glanced up to see that my Schefflera taiwaniana has flowers coming. The beast got the last lot, I wonder if these will fare better. The red flowers in front are Salvia confertiflora which are about eight feet tall now.
Impatiens auricoma x bicaudata is a thing we used to grow only in pots indoors, then discovered a couple of years ago that it does very well planted as a bedding plant. It won’t survive even the lightest frost but it flowers its head off for months and is easy from cuttings. This week I noticed that it was setting what looks like viable seed. The pods explode when you touch them. You know the rest. I’ll let you know how they do and how they turn out. The plants that are horribly pot bound in 3 litre pots are flowering better than the ones in the ground, though they look a bit hungry. Poor soil is better then. Hope it’s not the next Himalayan Balsam.
It’s not very inviting outside just now, dull and grey. Perfect for the weekend pastime of peering into other peoples gardens via the medium of Six on Saturday, hosted by The Propagator. The links are rolling in as I write.