In my post on Sunday, After the Storm…, I christened a slightly wild and unkempt area of the garden ‘Death-trap Corner’. It earned its name due to several toxic plant species, a few stingers, lots of spikes and spines, and some spring-loaded rose snares.
Well reader, such is my dedication to this blog, I braved the area again to bring you this post.
First come the foxgloves, Digitalis purpurea ‘Excelsior’, which have self-seeded liberally. They take on a few different colours: pink, pale lilac, white and buttermilk. The speckles at the throat of foxgloves are to attract bees and other pollinators, and they are never without a buzzing little visitor. Foxgloves waggle all day long.
The peony here was rescued from near smothering this year. It was being hemmed in on the one side by Rosa ‘Royal Jubilee’ (GLORY BE, what a rose this is. The street party is being set up as we speak!) and on the other by the Gallica rose ‘Charles de Mills’. Charles has been brutally pegged down, and seems to be enjoying his new prostate position, as he too is about to burst into flower. In fact here is the first one:
There is another peony, ‘White Charm’ which is ridiculously beautiful. Here is the first tantalising peep, from behind silken sheets:
And then full-on peony explosion:
It is loaded with buds. When it first emerges, the white petaloids (botanical term for jaggedy little petals at the centre) are more cream. They bleach to pure white in the sun. I love the ribbons of pink. It is also fragrant.
And yes I did get stung on the bum by the nettles as I leaned over (in shorts) to take this photo.
Nettles, for those in the Southern hemisphere, have tiny little prickles along the edge of their serrated leaves, that give a little sting if you brush past them. I must be getting old and leathery, because they really don’t bother me that much any more. The after-tingle is almost pleasant. But I can remember being stung to tears as a child.
Stephen tells me that his gran told him that getting stung by nettles keeps arthritis at bay. So there’s a bright side to everything.
In Death-trap Corner there are also opium poppies, Papaver orientale ‘Allegro’. But I cannot for the life of me capture their colour accurately. The sun shines through their pleated petals and gives a lovely variation of tone, but the camera just cancels out this subtlety to give a blanket of uniform orange. So I am snubbing them.
Let’s make do with a couple more foxglove pics. The next one is towering over my head.
Excuse me but that sun-lounger is calling me now. Where is my book? My sunglasses? My iced tea?
Do you have a ‘Death-trap Corner’ in your garden? I would love to hear your horror stories!