The last few weeks have bought about some incredible changes in the garden. With the weather trying to warm up as we move into a supposed summer, all the previous work and effort in cutting back overgrown plants, clearing borders and rejuvenating the soil has really paid dividends. As things have changed faster than I can write about them, I’m just going to post a picture and its associated short story. There’s no particular order or theme, just a heady mish-mash plant-gasm.
The Judas Tree (Cercis Siliquastrum) that was so kindly donated by one of our neighbours last year is now in full blossom. There are several specimens of this quirky-shaped, slow growing tree in the area and ours looks to be well on the way to adding to that collection. The bright pink blossom really stands out against the fresh green of the beech hedge behind it. It is currently part of the nomadic pot collection but there is a place in the garden earmarked to receive it. Once I get round to preparing the ground there, I’ll release it from the confines of the pot it’s currently in and set it free in the ground. It all sounds very poetic doesn’t it but it can’t be helped when you’re faced with this beauty.
This is a rescued hosta that we pulled out of a discard heap at the back of the garden last year. It looks like Hosta “Patriot” but there are so many different hosta varieties depending on the shade of green, the width of the margin and the time of day that it could be anything. The Erodium is self-seeded and this isn’t the only pot it’s found its way into either. The combination here looks particularly good but the hosta wants shade and moist soil while the Erodium prefers free-draining soil in full sun. Despite this, they’re both looking happy together for the moment.
The little table we have outside is currently dedicated to showing off the collection of winter-flowering pansies that were previously in the six trugs at the front of the house. As part of the bedding switch-over to summer-time, I swapped those pansies out for trailing fuchsias and trailing lobelias. The pansies weren’t particularly happy over the winter and while they had a brave attempt at trying to put out some flowers, the overall effect was lack-lustre and disappointing. It was only when the weather started to warm up and the light increased that they perked up. So instead of throwing them away in mid-flower, I decanted them into pots and some went into the bay window border underneath the new roses. The pansies are so bright and cheerful they can be seem from most places in the garden.
How about this for a promise of spectacular flowering? Look at all those flower buds preparing to open! I find this stage of flowering the most exciting and frustrating. Exciting because you can see the flowers that are to come and there’s the expectation of a brilliant show; frustration because there’s still a week or two before the show begins. This Iris Sibirica holds sentimental value. It originally came from my other half’s parents and we received it in a bucket. It was planted out in our previous garden underneath a Choisya and it began to thrive. A good few years on to the time of moving to our current garden and the Iris had grown into a substantial clump that was split in half; one half was left for the new owners and the other half was put back into a bucket to bring with us. This Iris is still in it’s bucket but I do plan on splitting the clump to make several plants and planting those in the ground – just as soon as it’s prepared. This Iris has made a long round-trip to return almost back to where it came from.
I thought I would end with this picture of Clematis “Miss Bateman” opening, to provide evidence that not all my Clematis end their days as dead sticks without having done something first. While I have a soft spot for most Clematis, I particular like those with contrasting stamens and a central bar down each petal. Miss Bateman is a mint green stripe that gradually fades in sunlight and contrasting lilac stamens.
There’s more to come in the great “Spring Reveal”!