Six on Saturday – 4/12/2021

Not a lot of gardening here this week, to cold, too wet, too windy. So bad have things got that I started a jigsaw puzzle yesterday and since it was a 1000 piece leaf montage, I nearly included it in this six. That would have been desperation indeed. As it is, there are two pictures taken indoors but I managed to find the others outside.

One.
Hakonechloa macra ‘Albovariegata’. Winter is when grasses truly come into their own, partly for form and partly for colour. The Hak macs are usually the brightest thing in the garden in December, January and February, then they fall apart, get cut to the ground and start over again. I managed to be out with the camera during the five minutes of sunshine we had yesterday, which helped.

Two.
Hedychium densiflorum ‘Assam Orange’. The flowering period on this is quite short but structurally it is good for months and it both turns more or less yellow and produces bright orange fruits, a bonus for December.

Three.
Not entering into the spirit of things was my tall Molinia ‘Transparent’, which started to collapse even before the gales of last weekend. I cut all the stems at the base and put them in a glass measuring cylinder I have. Another missed opportunity to join in the ‘in a vase on a monday’ meme. Finding anywhere suitably uncluttered for a photo proved impossible but you get the idea. Just short of eight feet.

Four.
Crassula argentea, the Jade plant, or money plant. This is the other indoor plant, just about. It lives in the south facing but unheated front porch and seems pretty happy there. This was rescued from our neighbour’s porch when he died a few years back and is much improved for being watered and having its mealy bugs jet-washed every now and then.

Five.
Saxifraga fortunei ‘Sybil Trelawney’. This featured in flower in mid October and it has produced an unexpected encore with a splash of colour in December.

Six.
Five Hostas for £5.40 sounded pretty good, five for £7.20 still fair and even five for £15 for what looked like a rather nice variety was OK. They came this week. Mostly rather small single nose plants, suspiciously slimy in a few cases. I’ve potted them up and hopefully in a years time they will seem like good value; just now I’m thinking I won’t repeat that mistake. ‘Halcyon’, ‘Lakeside Cha Cha’ and ‘One Man’s Treasure’, if you’re interested.

Today looks like a day of flattering to deceive, quite nice from inside looking out, then when you go out it’s cold and starts raining. I won’t fall for it. I’m staying in and checking out the somewhat dwindling band of sixers; it’s winter, it gets harder both to find things but to think of anything to say about them when you do. The Propagator has done his best, as ever, and hosts the links, as ever.

23 thoughts on “Six on Saturday – 4/12/2021

  1. I think your first photo with the sun on the grasses is great. The Hac mac has a wonderful form. Despite seeming to be the ubiquitous porch plant in my childhood, I’ve not seen a Jade plant in flower before.

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  2. It’s great to have flowers on your Money Plant. Mine is already old with a real trunk, but I have never had any flowers. (At the same time I have not changed the soil often and I have not added fertilizer: the only thing is that it spends 8 months outside and 4 months inside).
    About my hedychiums ( including ‘Assam Orange’ ) , mine always grow in pots. I haven’t had any flowers yet this winter, the pots are in the greenhouse and I don’t know if I cut the stems down or wait. Some leaves are still green ( 3/4 uppers), others ( lowers) are turning yellow. Your opinion ?

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    1. Our Money plant was repotted when we liberated it from next door, a few years ago now, and it hasn’t had much pampering since. It gets a real baking in the porch, it seems to be what it needs to flower. I’ve always grown ‘Assam Orange’ outside in the ground so they’ve always died off naturally. I seem to remember them being evergreen in the tunnel at work but I can’t remember how that played out for flowering. I think I’d be inclined to leave them outside until the frost took the tops then move them in if I were growing them in pots.

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      1. OK, since they are in pots, I will wait until spring to plant them in the ground and do the same next year. Do they need to have “tight roots” like Agapanthus to give flowers?

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  3. Your grasses look wonderfully golden, and I like the way you call them Hak Macs as spelling that one is always a pain. I’ve been trying a few of the ‘All Gold’ cultivars and I am happy with them, but they’re not nearly as big a clump as yours yet. How nice to have a flowering Jade plant, mine never has even though it’s ancient, like Fred’s with a trunk, possibly because it faces east not south.

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    1. I’ve found All Gold nearly as vigorous as Albovariegata but it is weaker stemmed and gets flattened by rain. I’ve put a bit in a pot so it can hang down over the sides, might look better than flat on the deck. Seems like a flowering Jade plant is a rarer beast than I’d realised.

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  4. I love the way you write. You had five minutes of sunshine and would not fall for the deceptive weather, which would rain if you went out. Had to laugh at that. The photo of the tall grassy things is remarkably dramatic. Good going for a drab-weather day!

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  5. Your Hac mac look fabulous. I moved mine to the north facing courtyard in a container where it does well, but has already died down. I’m now wondering if I should move it back to the sunnier south garden. I have a Jade plant which must be about 12 years old now, but has never flowered. I used to put it outside in the summer in full sun, but the last couple of years it has stayed in the conservatory (the pot is too heavy to keep moving now), but still no flowers! Like you, I shall be remaining indoors today, although that blue sky is tempting, the frequent showers of hail, and the frigid wind are not enticing me outside!

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    1. My Haks die off but not down, then stay in reasonably good condition and strawy colour for months. Another non-flowering jade plant, I don’t know how old ours is but it was in Des’s porch all the time he was there so it must be twenty or more. The hail keeps on coming.

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  6. If you couldn’t give us more than six each week, I would be worried. Your macs are doing sterling work and I hope my new transparent doesn’t grow as tall as yours. If may well have to go and find another garden if that is the case. I really do think that vase would grace IAVOM.

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    1. Transparent would be better for being more upright. Rosemoor had clumps labelled Molinia caerulae subsp. arundinacea that were nearly vertical and didn’t arch at all. It may be the combination of good soil and part shade making it grow a bit soft. Maybe I should get a better shot of it in the vase and put it in on monday.

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    1. The measuring cylinder is one of those old glass artefacts that is too interesting and aesthetically pleasing to ever get rid of, while being more or less completely useless. I’m probably not going to take up flower arranging just to justify hanging onto it.

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  7. That is a nice jade plant for inside what seems to be an enclosed porch. I tried to grow some as houseplants over the years, but they all eventually stretch, and get put back out. Were I lived in town, houseplants were nice, because the ground was so far below the windows. I suppose that if I really wanted to, I could have cycled a few inside and outside, to replace a stretched specimen with a fresh specimen every so often. They made a nice low and dense hedge outside.

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