There is a day at the beginning of summer when you realise it is really here.
Early in the morning, the sun peeks around the corner and lights up a rose. That rose gives a sigh, opens it petals, and lets out its scent. It is glorious.
These photos were all taken on the 1st June. A pretty much perfect day, from start to finish.
A new delight in the rose garden is Knautia macedonica (Macedonian scabious) ‘Melton Pastels’. Here they are, stretching up over the roses, salvia and geraniums.
They are already towering at six feet high. I chose them for this spot under the pear tree because I know that they are tolerant creatures, and will mind neither the dryness, nor the shade cast by the pear. All scabious (or pincushion flowers) are beautiful when backlit. These have an extra advantage of finding the sun first, because they are so tall.
I planted the main part of my rose garden two and a half years ago. A year later, I extended it outwards. This allowed me to add six new varieties of roses (tra-la!) five new peonies (tra-la-la!) and several new herbaceous perennials (tra-la-la-la-la!) I am pleased with how quickly this little row of planting has matured. I can no longer see the join between old planting and new.
I keep visiting this corner to appreciate the layers of planting. I like the outlines, as one texture is distinct from the next. There is layer upon layer of loveliness.
I generally plant roses and herbaceous perennials in groups of three. This gives each variety a presence in the border: their flowers are in sufficient number to make an impact. I like the way they form clear hummocks, like hills, through the border. Their outlines remind me of a child’s drawing of overlapping hills.
The English rose ‘Young Lycidas’ is looking lovely with Salvia nemorosa ‘Caradonna’. Every rose looks good with salvia. ‘Young Lycidas’ is pumping out its warm scent. There is a hint of sandalwood.
I grew this dianthus (sweet William) from seed. It is called ‘Auricula-eyed Mixed’ and you get a lovely selection of pinks, whites and purples. I think this one is my favourite.
It looks wonderful with the peachy-pink English rose ‘Boscobel’.
It has a subtle, spicy scent, which mingles with the fragrance from the roses.
I am really enjoying the fruit salad colours at the front of this border.
My eye is drawn to the number of flower buds on the English rose ‘Boscobel’.
‘Boscobel’ may rival another English rose, ‘Royal Jubilee’ (seen in this post) for being the most floriferous rose in my garden. By the afternoon, the sun has opened some of the buds. It is bathing in its own glory.
Last week, I featured the intersectional peony ‘Watermelon Wine’ in a post called ‘Mouth-watering‘. Here it is a week later, swishing its silky skirts.
It has been joined by another intersectional peony, ‘Callie’s Memory’. This has a more subtle colour, but is no less lovely. I love the deep, cherry-red staining at the centre of both of these peonies. It is like they hold a special secret, and may or may not let you in on it.
Last week I promised to show you Gladiolus communis subsp. byzantinus. Now you can see why I would scour the county for the real deal.
Look at the shimmer!
The day got better and better. I pottered around. Mainly sniffing roses. Oh, the scent!
Even when I went upstairs I was drawn to the view of the rose garden.
It would call out to me, and I would have to return, again and again and again.
I like to just bask in June. There is nothing to do but sniff roses, utter sweet nothings, roll around in rose petals, fondle them, bury your nose in their soft folds, sigh a bit. This is what my garden is for.
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