The Eminent Em and Anne

This post is an homage to my No.1 favourite planting combination in my garden.

Rosa ‘Lady Emma Hamilton’ and Geranium ‘Anne Thomson’ in June 2018

I want to celebrate this fabulous friendship.

Here is the mighty English Rose ‘Lady Emma Hamilton’,

Rosa ‘Lady Emma Hamilton’

and the redoubtable hardy geranium ‘Anne Thomson’.

Geranium ‘Anne Thomson’ with Rosa ‘Lady Emma Hamilton’ behind.

I had a hunch they would get on.

They both have spectacular colour.  Lady Em being the warmest apricot pink,

Rosa ‘Lady Emma Hamilton’

And Anne being glowing magenta purple.

Geranium ‘Anne Thomson’

I LOVE apricot and purple together.  They make my heart sing.

The combination is balanced by the sober maroon foliage of Em, and the fresh green of Anne.  Em grows in graceful levels, in spiralling tiers.  She provides stability for the more mobile geranium.

Rosa ‘Lady Emma Hamilton’ foliage

Anne circulates amongst all around her.  Including this Moroccan blue pot.  Anne seems to get on with everyone, intermingling freely.

Geranium ‘Anne Thomson’ in October

Em is more reserved, sticking to her own space, but she welcomes visitors.  She also gets on well with Rosa ‘Princess Anne’.

Rosa ‘Lady Emma Hamilton’ and Rosa ‘Princess Anne’

Lady Em is the most floriferous of roses.  She is not without buds between May and December.

Rosa ‘Lady Emma Hamilton’ bud and foliage.

Anne’s flowers are much smaller and simpler, but she produces them in greater number.

Geranium ‘Anne Thomson’ in October

She sparkles and shimmers in the light.


Her spent flowers are beautiful too.

Geranium ‘Anne Thomson’ in October

Em’s scent is entrancing.  She has charisma.  She has us hanging on her every bloom.

Rosa ‘Lady Emma Hamilton’ in October

It’s good that Anne isn’t the jealous type.  She knows her own worth.

Rather than getting all insecure and jealous, these two seem to lift one another up.

Rosa ‘Lady Emma Hamilton’ and Geranium ‘Anne Thomson’

They will keep on working hard, promoting one another’s interests, boosting one another’s confidence.

They might concede some time in December that a rest would be nice.

They will take a breather, refresh their minds, gather themselves in.  And then be ready to go again in March.

My aim in this blog is to share the sense of joy and wonder I get from gardening.  I like to reflect on life a little bit too.

Winter can be tough to get through.  I’m going to try to gather my thoughts too, and share them on this blog.

If you’d like to help me indulge, then join me by clicking on the ‘Follow’ button at the base of this post.  I can promise a mutually beneficial arrangement as we aim to enrich one another’s lives!




20 Comments Add yours

  1. I never grow tired of roses and geraniums, but I never thought to combine them in the garden as you have done. My geraniums are potted in urns on pedestals, with trailing vinca for elegance and grace, and sweet alyssum for honey-like fragrance, rather pungent. Most of my roses are in either the perennial beds or down the lane, but two Old Roses have been thriving in the herb garden for decades.

    1. Ali says:

      That sounds like a lovely combination for a pot. I love the romance of old roses that have been doing their thing for decades.

  2. Beautiful, beautiful pictures. I love contrasting leaf shapes particularly in shadier parts of a garden.

    1. Ali says:

      Geranium foliage is lovely.

      1. Yes, I love it …

  3. Chloris says:

    Is she related to Anne Folkard? Very pretty combination, I think I might introduce her to my Emma.

    1. Ali says:

      Yes, they are both hybrids of G. psilostemon x G. procurrens according to my hardy geraniums book. NERD ALERT! NERD ALERT! ‘Anne Thomson’ has slightly smaller flowers, in great profusion – I have always found ‘Anne Folkard’ to be a little niggardly in the number of flowers, but that might be because I grow her in semi-shade? ‘Anne Thomson’ is less sprawly; the hump is neater, though she does sprawl from midsummer whilst maintaining a neat hump at the centre. Too much information? 😂

      1. Chloris says:

        That’s why we blog, we get to talk to fellow nerds. I have a gorgeous Psilostemon variety called Ivan. Beth Chatto recommended it to me. Like your friend Anne it blooms for months.

      2. Ali says:

        ‘Ivan’ looks lovely too. How special to have a personal recommendation from Beth Chatto!

  4. Ooh I am currently eyeing up Lady Em in the rose catalogues – saw her in a open garden near us and absolutely loved her. May have to buy her after reading your post!

    1. Ali says:

      I would totally recommend her. She might just be my favourite.

  5. bcparkison says:

    Your garden is like a friendly tea party with everyone dressed in their best .

    1. Ali says:

      I love that image!

  6. What a beautiful post. As I have said before, I really love your nature metaphors. Female friends are a gift.

  7. Anne Dever says:

    Love these posts and certainly connect with the female colleagues sentiment. I adore flowers and work as Community Physiotherapy Manager in the West of Ireland.Long may your wonderful blogs reign!

    1. Ali says:

      Thank you for your lovely comment, Anne. I am really pleased you enjoy my blog posts. X

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