I got home at about 8pm last night.  The low sun was illuminating the peach tree and the cutting patch.


It struck me how the raised beds are like an oasis in the middle of the parched lawn.  You can see how the moisture from the beds has kept the grass immediately near them green, whilst further out it is a dry and crispy desert.

I didn’t waste the opportunity to call this post ‘Oasis’.  Oasis (the band) remind me of the summer I graduated from Leeds University, when every student bedroom in LS6 had an open window from which ‘Wonderwall’ was playing.

It is somewhat gratifying that my children listen to Oasis and think that they are cool.  This also goes for The Jam, The Smiths, The Cure, Blur, Radiohead and Muse.  They either don’t realise that this music is twenty or thirty years old, or they just don’t care.  That is how cool they are.

So, keeping to the Oasis theme, this is my dedication to (What’s the Story) Morning Glory?

The zinnias and the dahlias have packed the stadium.


Nicotiana are finding the daytime heat too much, and their flowers only open when the sun is off them.  They are night owls, drinking well into the early hours, and then sleeping it off during the day.  Come the evening, it’s

Hello, Hello, It’s good to be back, it’s good to be back…


These purple ones are look slightly worse for wear, but still a little bit glitzy.

Nicotiana ‘Sensation’

And these ones have fallen over in a heap.  But that doesn’t matter, because we’re all good friends here.  No brotherly fisticuffs in my garden.


I am still waiting for scabious to put in an appearance. But,

You gotta roll with it; you have to take your time, you have to say what you say, don’t let anybody get in your way…


P7150124 (2)

I seem to have a three-headed bud here, or is this just a bad trip?


Dahlias are fantastic when they are belting it out, but I also love them when they are feeling contemplative.  When they are having an acoustic moment.

Back beat, the word is on the street that the fire in your heart is out, 


I’m sure, you’ve heard it all before, but you never really had a doubt,

Dahlia ‘American Dawn’

I don’t believe that anybody feels the way I do, about you now…


And all the roads we have to walk are winding
And all the lights that lead us there are blinding

Dahlia ‘Waltzing Matilda’

There are many things that I would
Like to say to you
But I don’t know how

Dahlia ‘Waltzing Matilda’

Because maybe
You’re gonna be the one that saves me
And after all
You’re my wonderwall

Dahlia ‘Waltzing Matilda’

The snapdragons are looking shimmery and velvety in their lounge suits.


Slip inside the eye of your mind, don’t you know you might find, a better place to play.


You said that you’d never been, but all the things that you’ve seen, slowly fade away.


So I’ll start a revolution from my [flower] bed
‘Cause you said the brains I had went to my head
Step outside, summertime’s in bloom


Stand up beside the fireplace, take that look from off your face
‘Cause you ain’t ever gonna burn my heart out

Zinnias have been a bit of a revelation this year.  They love the heat and the sun, and don’t seem to need much water.

Zinnia ‘Queen Red Lime’

Some might say that sunshine follows thunder…

Zinnia ‘Cupid Mixture’

Each bloom goes on getting higher and higher…

How many special people change
How many lives are living strange
Where were you while we were getting high?

Zinnia ‘Cupid Mixed’, fizzing.

Some day you will find me
Caught beneath the landslide
In a champagne supernova in the sky


Cause people believe that they’re
Gonna get away for the summer
But you and I, we live and die
The world’s still spinning round
We don’t know why
Why, why, why, why

[Repeat to fade]


Thank you to my eldest daughter, who arranged these flowers.  You see how cool she is?  Twenty-year-old music and flower-arranging!

My aim on this site is to share the sense of wonder I get from gardening and being outdoors.

Some posts are fanciful, like this one. Others are contemplative. Some give practical ideas. I aim to inspire.

If you would like to join the joy, click on the ‘Follow’ button at the end of this post. You will receive an email each time I post.

29 Comments Add yours

  1. Nice theme, well executed. Definitely on the right track

    1. Ali says:

      Thank you Derrick.

  2. janesmudgeegarden says:

    Great post (again) Ali. I didn’t really share musical taste with my parents, but my Dad did with me (Early Rolling Stones which puts me in a certain age group!) and our children do with us, mostly old stuff they’ve come to like as they got older themselves.

    1. Ali says:

      Yes, I definitely did that: started re-discovering music that my mum and dad played through my childhood. And I love my kids introducing me to new music; I remember really tentatively sharing stuff with my mum or dad and being really pleased if they liked it, though of course I would never have admitted that either!

  3. Stella Stokes says:

    I just love your blog,thanks for sharing

    Sent from my iPad


    1. Ali says:

      Thanks so much Stella; it is lovely to hear that.

  4. Penny Post says:

    Lovely pictures, I’m afraid I don’t share your love of Oasis although I too did my first degree in Leeds but at Leeds Polytechnic as it was then known. We used to moan that going into uni the university students had filled the buses so they went sailing by us full, mind we got our own back going home. It’s ages since I’ve had Nicotiana in my garden I planted some in one of my very first gardens. I tend to find I pick up a liking for new bands from my daughter and then she decides they are no longer cool.

    1. Ali says:

      The Poly Bop (?that was what it was called, wasn’t it?) was way better than anything the University ever had to offer! Yes, I like getting an insight into my daughters’ tastes too. It is really interesting finding out what they are drawn to.

  5. I would never share my music with my parents, but my daughter enjoys and knows many of the old tunes I love.
    Your nicotiana is beautiful with the colors mixing together.

    1. Ali says:

      That is lovely. I do think it’s important not to dismiss their tastes, or they won’t share the good music they find! I love the feeling of warmth I get when listening to my mum’s favourites.

  6. susurrus says:

    Wonderful light for your (What’s the Story) Evening Glory tribute. The picture of nicotiana in the raised beds with the scabious at the front was so sensational, I had to get out my laptop to see it more closely than I could on my iPhone.

    I tried to share my music as a teenager with my parents, selecting the mildest, most laid back possible 20 min long track from an extensive collection as background music one Sunday lunch. I don’t think they managed anywhere near 20 mins before complaining and turning it off. Their music never did much for me either!

    1. Ali says:

      Thank you! Yes, I’m quite partial to a blast of loudness, which is handy for sharing teenage tastes.

  7. sgeoil says:

    I loved (still do) my parent’s music, the big band era. I’m not sure they loved my music; , Neil Young, Carol King, Fleetwood Mac, Supertramp..the list could go on! I was really touched when my son was MC at a school musical event a number of years back and he shared how he was pleased that his parents had exposed him to great music growing up! I had no idea…We continue to share music back and forth, some I love, some I don’t!

    Your post got me thinking about how parents/children influence each others plantings. I’ve started planting Hydrangea because of my remembrance of my mother’s love of the plant. Your daughter’s arrangement is beautiful!

    1. Ali says:

      That is lovely about what your son said! I grow hydrangea because my gran grew it.

  8. Heyjude says:

    I might be going off you Ali. Kate Bush? All that caterwauling? I grew up listening to the pop music of the sixties as a young child (my eldest brother is 7 years older than me) but found my own style(s) later. Motown was a favourite as a young teen, heavy metal as a late teen. I don’t recall my parents ever listening to music apart from what was on the radio. My ex introduced me to the Blues and Jazz. My children to Indie bands and Trance, Jack Johnson, Paolo Nutini. I’m still drawn to the old guys – Eric Clapton, Pink Floyd, David Gilmour, some of Robert Plant’s new stuff.

    1. Ali says:

      You have impressively eclectic tastes, Jude. I can’t tempt you with a bit of ‘Wuthering Heights’?

  9. bcparkison says:

    You make walking through the garden alot of fun. The flowers are beautifully arranged by your daughter.

    1. Ali says:

      She has a really good eye.

  10. Emma Cownie says:

    All that music is cool in my opinion. I have a real soft spot for snapdragons, too.

  11. Chloris says:

    You can’t beat zinnias and how they are enjoying all this sun. Love them. Dahlias too are looking fabulous right now. I have Walzing Mathilda, it’s so pretty. Love Nicotiana when it can bring itself to smile. Ali, your photos get better and better. Superb.
    But Oasis? Really?

  12. Christina says:

    I smiled when I read that Zinnias love the heat – well of course they do but they do need water when it is as hot as it is in my garden. The irrigation to my Zinnia bed isn’t working so I have to water with a hose every 2 days; well I missed a day and this evening when I went to check them; they were limp and wilting, I’ve never seen them like that before.

    1. Ali says:

      Oh no! I won’t neglect mine, then!

  13. Oh, these gorgeous colors! Marvelous post, Ali.

  14. This is such a cool, creative post, Ali! I loved how you weaved these pictures into the “Wonderwall” song! I love that song but didn’t know who sang it. I have been listening to it on repeat for the last ten minutes now :).

    1. Ali says:

      That’s brilliant! Morning Glory is a fabulous album.

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