Perhaps today is the day we get some rain. The garden is gagging for it. Lower temperatures have given it a bit of respite but a good drench is what it needs. I’ve watered a few things in the ground; new plantings and the things that suffer the most, but our water is metered so hosing everything is not going to happen.
We went up to Rosemoor on Tuesday and it seems to be much the same there; signs of selective irrigation but some areas struggling. They’d had quite a bit of frost damage from around a month ago, which we were sad to see but relieved we’d not had.
So, joining with The Propagator and many others, here are six things strutting their stuff in our garden today.
Leptospermum ‘Karo Spectrobay’. You may recall that last week I mentioned visiting a nursery and buying this Leptospermum. The name on the label is Leptospermum karo ‘Sprectro Bay’, under which it had a ‘common’ name of New Zealand Tea Tree. It was flowering, I liked it and I bought it. Good nursery, I’ve enthused about it here before, but I did a bit of digging and I have to say the label could be improved. The name is as I’ve written it above, it is a hybrid between L. spectabile and L. rotundifolium. The species L. karo does not exist and ‘Karo’ is part of the cultivar name. It was raised in New Zealand but both parent species are Australian. Then there’s ‘Sprectro Bay’ versus ‘Spectrobay’. Almost all references to it online call it ‘Spectro Bay’, wrongly. The horticultural industry can be a little complacent about such things IMHO. I’ll get off my soapbox now.
Back in January I noticed a flower spike emerging on my Yucca gloriosa ‘Variegata’. It didn’t seem likely it would survive the winter but it did and now it’s fully out. I think they normally flower in autumn. Looking back at the January six, I noticed I’d dated it 25/1/2010. Time flies.
Lathyrus grandiflorus. The two flowered everlasting pea is a very fine plant which was given me by a gardener in Liskeard some years back. It took a couple of years to get going then went berserk, popping up yards away in all directions. I saw the original yesterday, in full sun against a wall, a sheet of flowers. Mine has a few. They’re in two’s and they are a very vivid colour. No scent unfortunately. I gave three seedlings of it to another gardening friend the day before yesterday. I have two left; I should plant them somewhere sunny.
Continuing my ferns mini-series, I offer you Polystichum setiferum ‘Ray Smith’. This has fronds about three feet tall but very narrow. Like many of the P. setiferum forms it produces bulbils on the leaves which grow into little plantlets and can be grown on into new plants. Doing so is irresistible to me so I usually have a few plants kicking about waiting to be given away to someone.
Before the old man next door to us died a couple of years back he invited me to have anything from his garden that I wanted. There wasn’t much but I did dig up a peony, not knowing what it was, but as something of a memento. I have subsequently identified it as ‘Sarah Bernhardt’ with reasonable confidence and last year it was beautiful. This year a couple of buds were badly distorted and never opened properly, leaving this as the only decent bloom this year, and even this one is small. Probably just too dry, I hope it’s not something nasty like a virus.
Clematis recta. From the same garden as the pea above. This was given me twice because I’d mislaid the first. It turned out I hadn’t lost it because when the second one started into growth, so did the first, right along side it. They are seedlings, one starting off strongly flushed purple in new growth, the other green. The green one starts flowering earlier than the purple but the flowers are the same. Quite a strong fragrance but growing about five feet high and requiring good support, so this weekend’s gales will probably snap my recycled canes and bring it down. They’re only half the height they needed to be to start with.
Now I’m off out to tweak my water harvesting setup so that if the rain comes I don’t miss a drop. I’m not sure I’m going to want to stay out long, it’s quite cold and very windy, but I was lent a book on Hostas yesterday (Grenfell and Shadrack) so I could do with an excuse to sit down, browse, drool and covet. I was looking a few up online yesterday; Hostas could easily become a monumentally expensive way to feed slugs.
Have a good week.