Tuesday 3 March 2020

February Favourites!

Good Evening!
Apologies for it being such a long time since I posted, I didn't realise that I hadn't wrote a post since January. Luckily February is one of the quieter months so you didn't miss too much that's been going in my garden! I thought I'd share with you my favourite pictures that I took last month to get you all back up to speed ...

Let's start off with more heavenly Hellebores! I know I shared a few in my last post but you can never have too many Hellebores!

Helleborus x hybridus 'Harvington ... Apricot' 'Picotee' and 'Single Yellow Dark Eye'
Helleborus 'Anna's Red'
Helleborus 'Pink Beauty'
This particular variety always flowers prolifically in my garden each year and is one of my 'forever' plants.
Of course the Snowdrops were displaying their delicate blooms last month, as soon as I see them peeking through the soil I'm seriously impatient for them to flower lol
Galanthus 'Flore Pleno'
Of course another Spring bulb that you can't be without at this time of year is the Crocus. Even though the heavy rain that we've had gave them a little battering the little golden blooms were a pleasure to see.
Meanwhile over in the Greenhouse where the conditions are a bit more bearable the annual routine of sowing the Tomatoes and Sweet Peas is well underway! As you can see from the following photo you can tell what I'l be doing on my next day off ... pricking out Tomato seedlings!
The varieties I've sown this year are ... 'Gardener's Delight', 'Sungold', 'MoneyMaker' 'Tigerella' 'Maskotka' and 'Black Russian'.
 Lathyrus odoratus (Sweet Peas) 'Fragrantissima' and 'Heirloom' Mix
Before I go I'd just like to mention that this year all my seedlings are being sown and potted on into an Organic Peat Free Compost. There really is no excuse not to go Peat Free nowadays due to the impact that Peat farming has on the environment, and so far I can say that the particular compost I've chosen to use is performing just as well as a regular Multi-Purpose! (No connection just a happy Gardener)
Thanks for stopping by, I promise I'l be back soon with more news from my garden!

Sunday 26 January 2020

Winter Blooms

Good Afternoon!
Well after a sunny start the weather has turned and it is now chucking it down outside, so I thought I'd share with you some photo's of what's currently flowering in the garden.

To start off with is something a little bit out of season, however it's protected in the Greenhouse which is what has encouraged it to flower ... 
Fuchsia 'Dark Eyes'
Outside the Hellebores are putting on a delightful show, here's just a few of the lovely colours that can be seen on the plants right now ... there's still some more varieties waiting for their buds to burst!
 Hellebore hybridus 'Pretty Ellen Purple'
 Hellebore hybridus 'Harvington Lime'
 Hellebore hybridus 'Pretty Ellen Red'
 Hellebore hybridus 'Pretty Ellen White'
 Hellebore hybridus 'Double White Speckled'
A self seeded Hellebore.
This next Hellebore is slightly different to the ones shown above, the foliage has slightly jagged edges and the flowers are a subtle green, I have it planted in a large container on the driveway mixed in with other plants but it's currently the star of the show!
Helleborus argutifolius 
Next up are some plants that everyone knows, even if you're not a Gardener, Primroses! Simple yet still beautiful I have a small selection in a little container at the front of the house.
Meanwhile indoors I have two small pots of Dwarf Daffodils in the Living Room, one of which started blooming a couple of days ago. At least I have some sunshine indoors!
Narcissus 'Tete - a - Tete'
Lastly I just thought I'd share a photo of a little Ladybird I spotted earlier on in the week, it was climbing up this blade of grass in the front border.

Thanks for popping by, enjoy what is left of the weekend!

Wednesday 8 January 2020

New Year, New Plant!

Good Morning!
In today's post I thought I'd share with you a recent purchase for the garden.

Camellia x williamsii 'Jury's Yellow'
A compact evergreen shrub with green leathery leaves that produces medium sized, anemone-form white flowers with a yellow centre early in the year. 
Prefers a sheltered position out of strong winds and early morning sun, the emerging buds and flowers can be damaged from cold, strong winds and frost. Hardy down to -10 in the UK. 
The ultimate growing height of this plant in 10-20 years is 2.5-4 metres.
The pot is also a new addition as well ... Camellia's are acid loving plants so unfortunately this plant wouldn't do very well if it was planted into the ground in my garden. 
In brief, each garden has a soil ph level. Some will be Acidic, Neutral and some more Alkaline which means certain plants will either thrive or struggle in a particular condition. It's pretty simple to find out what you have by using a Soil Ph Test (available online or in Garden Centre's) and it's always worth knowing what you have.

Camellia's along with Rhododendrons and Heathers are Acid loving plants and my soil is Alkaline, however all is not lost! I can simply grow these plants in Containers using Ericaceous Compost. 
I made sure that I found a pot that was larger than the container the plant came in, added some crocks (broken up pots) to the bottom to aid drainage, then filled it 2 thirds high with the correct compost along with adding some slow release fertiliser. 
It's essential that you give container plants some extra feed due to them not being able to get as many nutrients compared to being planted in the ground. Slow release fertiliser will provide food for 6 months in the compost after which you can then switch to a liquid feed when appropriate.
I finished off by adding a layer of grit to the top of the compost, this helps to keep moisture in and reduces weed seedlings growing on the surface.

TIP - When selecting Plants from a Garden Centre ALWAYS check them over for any signs of Pests, Damage or Grey Mould. Also, tip the plant out of the container to check for healthy root growth and that there isn't any sign of Vine Weevil (see page tab 'Plant Pests for more info). If the plant you like is showing signs of these then it's best not to buy it at that moment in time.
The last thing you want is to introduce any pests or diseases to your garden which will not only reduce the quality of your new plant, often resulting in poor quality of growth and/or death. But they could also affect plants that you already have in your garden.
Photo of the Camellia Flower taken from the internet, I can't wait for the first one to bloom on the plant I purchased!

Thanks for stopping by,

Wednesday 1 January 2020

A Warm Welcome Back!

It's been almost 2 years since I last posted on this blog, unfortunately time got in the way of things but here's hoping this year I can find more time to write on here. Fingers crossed there's still someone that would like to read these posts! 
It's New Years Day so it seemed the perfect time to get this blog  going again ...

So, what do I have to share with you all? Well there was a little glimpse of Sunshine this morning for a few hours so I made the most of having the day off work and decided to take some photo's of the plants in my garden that are currently grabbing my attention ...

One of my favourite plants and they're invaluable in the garden during the Winter months. These are just starting to produce their flowers and it's always exciting waiting for their buds to burst open.
I have quite a few varieties in Pots and the Borders, the one's in the ground are the first to get going but the Pots are slowly waiting in the wings ...

TIP - Removed old foliage along with any that has black markings, this will reduce the spread of 'Blackspot' and also show off the emerging flowers more.

Last year is sowed some Foxgloves, Digitalis 'Apricot', which were potted on into 2 litre pots. 
They are currently sitting on a table and will be planted out in the Spring. 
They were given a dusting of Frost this morning ...

A Winter - Flowering Shrub that provides everygreen interest all year round, however at this time of year is when it really performs. It produces tiny white Flowers and black Berries, however don't let the size of the flowers confuse you ... the perfume is extremely strong and I can smell it a few metres away from where it's planted in a border near a bird bath. A welcome surprise when walking past! This shrub is about 5 years old and rather large however I also have a smaller version of it in a pot by the front door. That way I can smell the perfume when I go to and return from work!

Finally even though we've had Winter Weather and cold temperatures one of the Penstemons is still producing flowers. Not something you'd usually expect to see on New Year's Day!

Well I hope you've enjoyed today's post, I'l be back when I have more photo's along with sharing what I will be growing throughout the year ... here's to 2020!

Monday 27 February 2017

February Favourite's

Good Morning!
Today's post is all about what has pleased me the most in my garden this month and it's a clear winner ... the flowering Iris reticulata in my Greenhouse!

Briefly describing these are early flowering bulbous perennials with narrow leaves alongside erect stems that hold the flowers. The flowering time can start in late Winter, Spring and early Summer. Iris reticulata reach up to 15cm high with a light fragrance, they are happy in a sunny position and will cope on most soils as long as it is well drained. 
Please note that these are deciduous which means that they will die back then reappear when they start back into growth the following year.

The varieties that I currently have growing are ...

 Iris reticulata 'Alida'

Iris reticulata 'Natascha'

Iris reticulata

I always enjoy having a few pots of these in Greenhouse as they bring some welcome pops of colour at this time of year, especially on those grey dreary days! After flowering I will plant them out into the borders of the garden adding extra interest there along with freeing up the pots for something else.


Thursday 16 February 2017

Winter Blooms ...

Good Morning!
Over the past fortnight we've been graced with the appearance of some of my favourite blooms. The sight of these lovelies makes it known that Spring is around the corner, my favourite season!
Today I wanted to share with you a couple of photographs ...

Snowdrops pushing though the cover of Heuchera 'Black Knight'

If you've got Snowdrops in your own garden why not turn one of the heads over gently and take a look at the petals close up? This particular Snowdrop is Galanthus 'Flore Pleno'

The Hellebores are slowly starting to wake up, the following two have been in bloom for the past week with the rest in the garden patiently waiting in the wings ...

Helleborus Harvington Double White Speckled

Helleborus Blue Metallic Lady

A classic plant for this time of year is the Primrose, I have a few planted up in pots that add a great splash of colour, my favourite's are the simple white's.

Lastly another plant in flower is my Clematis 'Winter Beauty', unfortunately there's only a couple of flowers this year due to the resident garden birds nipping the buds off as they were forming ...

Thanks for taking a look, when the rest of the Hellebores come into bloom I shall share some more photographs to share with you all.

Sunday 12 February 2017

February's Garden Checklist ...

Good Morning!
The daylight hours are getting longer and there are a few things you can be doing in the garden right now ...

1. Cut Back  - It's time to do a little bit of tidying up by cutting back a few faded stems! Plants such as Sedums can have their old flowering stems cut back to the base, along with them any ornamental Grasses that have been left standing over the winter months can be cut back before the new shoots appear. You could also divide congested clumps to produce new plants for yourself!

2. Transplant - Now is a good time to transplant any deciduous plants whilst they are dormant. For example if you've planted something in the wrong place or too close to another plant then now is your chance to get that sorted.

3. Late-Summer Flowering Clematis - If you have a late-summer flowering clematis in your garden give it a prune when you get a moment. Cut all stems back to healthy buds about 30cm from the base.

4. Winter Pruning - Keeping on the subject of pruning it's time to finish any winter pruning of your fruit and soft fruit trees by the end of the month.

5. First Early Potatoes - If your planning on growing some first early potatoes this year then it's time get them started! All you need to do is place the tubers into a tray or an egg box in a bright, frost free place to chit.

6. Feed - Give Fruit Trees and Bushes a little boost by sprinkling sulphate of potash around the base which will encourage fruiting.

7. Seed Sowing - You can get Sweet Peas started this month by sowing them into deep pots, 3 seeds to a 9cm pots or even singly in toilet roll inserts. Keep them frost free in a Greenhouse or if you don't have one simply place them on a bright, sunny windowsill. Alternatively if you sowed some back in Autumn then now is the time to pot on and pinch out the seedlings.
Along with these you can some other seeds started such as Antirrhinums and Lobelia, if you have a heated Propagator you could also get your Tomatoes & Chilli's going!

8. Weather - The weather can be pretty varied at this time of year and I've already had a few snowy spells where I live. If you get any heavy snowfall make sure that you knock it off any shrubs, trees and hedges to prevent it causing damage to branches. Wind and Frost can also cause some damage by lifting and loosening plants, make sure that you firm them back in and keep an eye out after any bad spells.

Thanks for stopping by, don't forget you can find all the previous Checklists on the page tab above.