Oh, all right, I know it’s more of a ‘start the month view’, but I only managed to take the pictures at the end of the month, not get the time to write the actual post. Work, not celebrations. Work.
And there’s been plenty of work in the garden too, not least in the veg plot
where everything is suddenly beginning to go zoom. I will be digging potatoes soon, and the broad beans are doing well, very well; some of the pods are about 10cm long. There are a lot of them – or there were until this jubilee weekend and the rain and wind. The shallots in the foreground have been slow to get going, and the garlic (which is behind the bird bath) isn’t bulking up at all. We need a bit more warmth, please.
But the plus side is the meadow. It has gone from looking like a slightly overgrown lawn to a full-blown meadow almost overnight. The ‘bad hair day’ stage lasted – oh, about five hours.
There are a lot of daisies this year, and they are just beginning to open. It does look as though it is going to be a excellent year for the wild flowers in the garden; perhaps I should start a ‘wildflower Wednesday’ routine. Except it might get a bit samey after I post a lot of pictures of hawkweed, I suppose…
That’s not the real problem, though. Down in the middle garden I am battling with bracken. It comes over from the wildy bit next door up in the meadow as well, but somehow it doesn’t seem to hide as well there as it does here – I can’t think how. The middle garden is cultivated, for heaven’s sake.
It sneaks in along the far edge. One minute nothing; the next day there’s a six-foot monster. I rip them up and sling them back whence they came.
Ahem. Not many changes here, but I have extended the bed around the sundial and used it as a tulip dump, which will be a riot of either colour or disappointment next spring; we shall see. In the meanwhile it’s going to have some sunflowers (short, bronze and the person who gave them to me can’t recall their name) and striped calendulas in it (they’ll be striped if they come true from seed, that is). I’ve also been given another clematis, which is crawling its way up the arch – rubramarginata. There’s one triumph here: my white dicentra has decided that it was actually alive these past three years, and that it might as well flower to prove it.
It’s a good year for dicentras. Presumably it will now vanish for another few.
The bottom garden has seen the most change, with the creation of a large new bed which I am beginning to fill up. I’ve been adding cosmos, Nicotiana Tinkerbell – thanks, Karen – N. sylvestris and N. suaveolens to the perennials, as well as some achilleas which I suspect may not flower this year, but that’s OK. There are also a lot of cerinthes which have been out for a few weeks and are looking very healthy.
I just hope the poor babes are holding their own in the gales and rain. I daren’t go and look. I am quite pleased with myself for one thing here, though: veg have not crept in. I thought they might, but I’ve managed not to slip any in (well, there is a globe artichoke, but they’re spectacularly decorative, and it wouldn’t fit anywhere else). I still have the bean frame and the bed in front of the greenhouse down here anyway, so it’s not exactly veg free.
From the terrace – ho, ho, the small slate area in front of one side of the house – the bottom garden looks rather lush and generous.
It’s a shame about what you see when you get closer. Weeds, mostly. Weeds and valerian.
A lot of people round here wage war with valerian – I remember deliberately planting it in my London garden, which caused much amusement – though the only one I can seem to grow is the standard red form, and I rather fancy some white. But that’s quibbling. I like a little valerian, and so do the bees.
See? Lovely. Even if I do spend an inordinate amount of time chopping off the seeding heads to try and prevent it from coming up in the lower walls, the greenhouse, the compost heap, the meadow, the top walls, the hedge bottoms, the pigsty, the road side of the walls…
And my irises are out, so I’m a happy bunny. Hm. An almost happy bunny. I’ve got a lot of blind ones this year, and something has been snacking on a few of those which have come through. However, I’ve already dead-headed over twenty blooms and there are still a lot more to go, so I’m not exactly out of irises. I’m lucky; I know some people who have completely blind beds with not a sign of a flower spike.
And some of my new additions are blooming too. I hadn’t thought that they’d join in until next year, so that’s an unexpected treat.
And this even goes well with my existing irises, better than I had hoped… Oh, sorry. This is Afternoon Delight, which I bought from Wootons.
I think I’m in love.
Thanks to Helen, The Patient Gardener, for hosting this meme. Why not pop over and see what other people have been doing?