The weather looks set to assert itself next week, bringing an end to the pretence that summer is lingering on. The first seed catalogue arrived thursday too. I’m OK with it, even if I do have at least two Dahlias that have only begun to flower this week. My thoughts are turning to next season and in particular to the big jobs that need to be completed during the next few months.
I thought rather than focussing on individual plants this week I would pull back with my camera and look at six wider views.
The front garden doesn’t get much coverage on saturday sixes but is looking pretty good still. I think it was last sunday that I noticed a flower spike emerging on the Yucca, quickly followed by two more. They’ve shot up at two inches a day or more. Also last weekend, inpreparation for moving my tunnel, I turfed out the three pots of Alstroemeria ‘Indian Summer’ that I’d split a big pot into back in mid summer. I plunged them, in their pots, as a group. I may move them under cover for the worst of the winter.
The refurbished glasshouse. At the end of last week’s thrilling installment the floor was finished but there was just one bench, a couple of plants and some onions. More staging came on tuesday and I went shopping for plastic trays on wednesday. The formal handover was at close of play thursday and Sue got busy moving Fuchsias in.
It’s amazing how much usable space we’ve gained in that there are three usable levels. The main staging is great for anything that wants full light, the lower level is light enough for my propagator, though I may get a supplementary light for a winter boost, and it will be fine for overwintering dormant fuchsias and shade lovers. Then under that is enough space for bags of compost and pots. There’s even a shelf on one side, making four levels. Previously there were plants at floor level and space above.
This may be the last picture I show of the tunnel still full of plants. The tomatoes are on their last legs and when the temperature drops next week they will have to go. Most of the plants on the left hand side are Camellias I’ve been looking after for the National Collection and I will be taking them back to plant them over the next week or three. That just leaves some small camellias and a few odds and sods which will get squeezed in somewhere else.
It’s been where it is since I bought it in September 2014, in the weeks following the unexpected termination of my employment. It seems half a lifetime ago.
A viewpoint. When I finished the decking, I put the bench with its back to the house. I’d moved the water tap, boxed in the drain, removed any need to get to that part of the house wall. For now we can sit down facing the garden and have a beer in late afternoon sunshine and for as long as we have sunshine I’m committed to doing just that.
The viewpoint is low but it’s a nicely enclosed space. I stood on the bench for the second shot so you can see a bit more, then took the third from upstairs so you can see the whole kit and caboodle.
When I got the Kings seeds catalogue I noted that of the red onion ‘Magnate’, which is what those on the decking are, they say “producing quality bulbs up to 130g”. I weighed one of the largest of mine, 550g.
We’ve managed to keep the decking pretty much clear so far, or at least to remove the inevitable clutter quickly after doing jobs like building glasshouse staging. The pot stands have worked well at letting the deck below dry out quickly, we will probably get a few more. The onions are now in the glasshouse but there are loads more still up the plot.
Another viewpoint. This small area is looking rather colourful at present. It shows our near total disregard for colour schemes or obvious design and I’m broadly very happy with it. The scarlet Dahlia will get replaced with something marginally more muted next year but I have nothing lined up yet.
Not for the first time, it’s only now when I’m looking at the photo that I notice that the greyish leaved plant at centre right is flowering. Another gem from Off the Edge, thanks Gill but I confess I’ve forgotten its name. It’ll come to me.
I reckon that to keep a garden flowery without going the summer bedding route, you need about 50% long season flowerers like Plectranthus, Dahlias, Fuchsias, Erodium, Salvias, Indigofera pendula; and 50% seasonal, like the Solidago, Aster, Sedum, Geraniums and Hydrangea in this view. A bit of coloured foliage helps too.
A third view. Evening sun catching late summer exuberance. It doesn’t matter that the path is all but blocked, it’ll all get cut back soon enough. The view from the same place at the same time next year will be different, the pot will have a different occupant, the Helenium will have been moved back from the path and shorter ones planted in front. And that’s just a couple of the intended changes, there are usually more unintended ones. It’s good to have a record, it will never be the same again.
The comments, with links, are coming in on The Propagator’s post, there was a time I was an early riser but hey, what’s the rush? I was going to fetch in the rest of my onions but they can lie in the sun for another couple of days. The rain that was forecast yesterday for here seems to have drifted south. I’ll go and potter. Have a good week.