Friday favourites: July


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The garden here is really beginning to mature and fill in, now that it is some five years old.  Walking round this morning, after so much rain last night, these were my favourite sights.


The Aeoniums were looking fabulous with raindrops this morning.  This is Aeonium velour.  I have to overwinter them in the house and by the time it is safe, frost free from about mid-May the Aeoniums tend to look rather puny and pale.  They like the heat but in particular they need good sunlight.  That is perhaps why they do so well in coastal locations.  By July they are really looking as they should, sumptuous, richly coloured and succulent.  I really love them.


This near black Aeonium is Aeonium cyclops so named I guess because its central ‘eye’ keeps green.  This is one of my favourites as I appreciate the contrast in colour and think it is even more interesting than the black Aeonium zwartkop.

Strong colour in the garden is growing on me and this combination is not for everyone perhaps but I really like it.IMG_8602

These are the unopened petals of Crocosmia Lucifer dripping in rainwater against a pink backdrop of img_8457Penstemon Garnet.

Right it is time for a glass of something delicious. Cheers. D.

In a vase on Monday: tall


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I am drawn towards tall, see-through type plants and this little grouping are the type of plants I mean.

Lined up in my old test tube style vase. For those of you who like to know these things it is Vase d’Avril by TseTse Associates.

In the tubes are Verbena bonariensis, Allium sphaerophalon, Persicaria amplexcaulis Firetail and a stem from Sanguisorba. Less tall is Astrantia which on close inspection has claret centre markings which link well with the others.

Claret centre in the Astrantia

There is a movement to these types of plants. Even static when seen from above you can see the hither and thither way they have about them.

These are my flowers this Monday joining Cathy and her friends from all over the blogosphere. Not sure if that is the correct use of the term but it sounds right.

Wishing you a good week, wherever you are and thanks for reading.D.

In a vase on Monday: no fluff needed


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Sometimes flowers are so beautiful or so striking they can carry a vase on its own. I am talking about the ubiquitous Hydrangea arborescens Annabelle.

To my mind and eye, nothing further is needed. Well water of course but you know what I mean.


The shades of green, the masses of tiny flowers, the imperfect spheres.


Are these slightly early this year? I think perhaps they are. In any event they are very welcome and appreciated for their calming shades of green. I have been given these stems from a friend who has lots and lots in her walled garden. Gardeners are generous folk, don’t you think?

Anyway I am loving them and enjoying their presence in my living room.

This is my vase on Monday and probably for every day this week as they will last well.

Joining Cathy and bloggers from far and wide. If you have something to put in vase from your garden, do take a picture and share it with us and link it back to Cathy’s blog.

Have a good week wherever you are and thanks for reading. D.

Six on Saturday: 27/6/20


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The month of June is progressing too quickly for my liking. I want it to slow a little so we can savour the summer, the long hours of daylight, the weather. It’s been said before but I for one would like an endless summer.

Maybe not if it is 31 degrees though!

My six today to share with you and our host The Propagator are a snapshot of the season in my garden.

Sisyrinchium Quaint and Queer

These tiny flowers are a favourite of mine not least because they are quaint and definitely a queer colour. Don’t be distracted by the foliage, that is from a neighbouring box plant. Q&Q has typical strap leaves of a Sisyrinchium.

Nigella papillosa African Bride

Grown from seed these are much bigger than a regular Nigella. My new favourite I think. Good white petals and dark black centres. Good in a vase.

Hydrangea arborescens Annabelle

The flower heads on the Hydrangeas have suddenly grown and are even beginning to colour up from their starting green. They are growing under Vitis coignetiae Crimson Glory vine and next to Geranium Johnson’s Blue. Such pleasing shades of green.

Crocosmia Lucifer

Crocosmia Lucifer is a devil to grow. See what I did there?!

This is about my third attempt in various gardens. Finally I seem to have cracked it here: sunny open position and well drained soil. In a raised bed it seems happy returning for this it’s third summer.

Stipa tenuissima Penstemon Garnet and Crocosmia Lucifer

Hemerocallis also are doing well and flowering beautifully right now.

Hemerocallis Little Grapette

This is a useful front of border sized Hemerocallis in a rich dark grape colour looking properly juicy with raindrops this morning.

Echinacea Delicious Candy

I love a daisy and the Echinacea Delicious Candy are no exception to that pretty daisy look. This one is an especially vibrant pink. Smaller in stature than E purpurea but seriously more colourful. Echinacea like the open position my garden offers and need elbow room to flower well.

These are my six. I hope you have an enjoyable weekend wherever you are and thanks for reading. D.

In a vase on Monday: on a Tuesday


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The day got away from me yesterday and I did not get chance to prepare a vase until last thing. Here it is:

Outside on the table in the summerhouse is my vase full of Alchemilla, Ammi, Nepeta, Digitalis, Penstemon, Rose a Shropshire Lad, a spike of Verbena bonariensis and a couple of poppy seed heads for good measure.

‘Summer house’ sounds a bit la-di-dah. Apologies. It is summer but it’s not a house as it has no windows or doors but it is a shelter and with this weather we are out there all the time.

Cathy is our host for this lovely meme. Take a look at her blog to see some other pretty vases full of flowers. Such a nice thing to look at.

Have a good week wherever you are and thanks for reading. D.

Six on Saturday: midsummer


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After the deluge the last couple of days I can almost hear the garden sighing in relief. I am joining The Propagator our host for this meme of six things in the garden on a Saturday. Simple. Do join in. Take a look at his blog for details.

Come into the garden with me

Firstly the roses are coming into their own. Rose Gertrude Jekyll smells divine and in early light her colour sings.

Rose Gertrude Jekyll

Another pink ( I did not realise I had chosen as much pink as this, I don’t think of myself as a pinky sort of girl).

Lily the pink the pink the pink

Unscented these supermarket bulbs were popped in a few years ago. Normally I get half a dozen to enjoy . Alas this year, the lily beetle has eaten the rest to a stump.

To counter all the pink I like Alchemilla mollis. As an edging it is delightful and I allow it to seed around. The chartreuse colour is great when against pink.

Alchemilla mollis

Another similar shade of green is from the foliage of the variegated Indian bean tree species Catalpa pulverulentum.

Catalpa pulverulentum

The leaves had started to emerge and then they were hit by the late frost. I won’t lie but I was rather worried that I might have lost it. Thankfully new leaves have emerged and it is looking gorgeous.

Back to more pinks and it seems I really do like them after all. This time Dianthus.

Dianthus Carthusianorum

I love this Dianthus for its tall willowy habit that blends so well with Verbena bonariensis.

Aeonium corner

In the run up to my open garden last year, I received over 30 Aeoniums which had been generously donated. ( Thank you Anthony if you are reading). I sold some entire plants on the day and lots and lots of cuttings. I have overwintered the leftovers in the house and taken cuttings to grow on for further sales. As I have had to cancel my prearranged openings I shall grow them on for another year. Now outside I have created a little collection.

These are my Six for today. I hope you have a good weekend and thanks for reading. D.