Spring Cleaning

Edging the lawn is not my favourite garden job. I don’t like anything that involves keeping to a straight line. I am a wobbly sort of gardener.

Tripping the Light Fantastic

Sunlight is transformative. Petals and leaves become translucent and their network of veins are revealed. The fine down on stems and buds are illuminated. Sunlight is a transitory and elusive quality in the garden. Which is perhaps why it is so magical.

Absence makes the heart grow fonder

In this post, I’m reflecting on which plants are the real workhorses, keeping the show going into autumn. Which plants have been supping the elixir of eternal youth, and which are a little worse for wear.

Sparkle

As the world turns, the light is changing.  I am an early riser, and if I get up at 5am, I wake up to a gentle dappled light which dances against the curtains and invites me outside. But by 6am, the bread machine beeps, and Ruby knows it is time for breakfast.  She nuzzles me…

A breath of fresh air

Today we were joined by my fabulous step-daughter, who is with us for four weeks.  She helped me choose the photos for this post, and chatted to me throughout.  So there might be some weird sentences as I accidentally type random words from our conversations. Here is the view from the table. The light coming…

Comparing the growth habit of different roses

A reader asked if I could show photos of the growth habit of the David Austin English roses ‘Lady Emma Hamilton’ and ‘Roald Dahl’.  I thought I would go the whole hog and write a post about the growth habit of all my roses. I do favour David Austin English roses because: they have the…

Starfire

I am having a glorious summer with Phlox.  I discovered Phlox through reading Christopher Lloyd’s Colour for Adventurous Gardeners, one of the gardening books I return to time and time again. I have written about my other Phlox varieties in Phloxy Lady? and Boring…  Now it is the turn of the loudest and proudest, Phlox paniculata ‘Starfire’. This has wonderful…

Raindrops

On Friday we had some rain!  It was a steady drip for a couple of hours during the day, and then a bit more as I was going to bed.  It was badly needed: it felt like a rescue breath for the hedges and fruit trees. I have accidentally caught a couple of lovely water…

Prehistoric

Many of my favourite plants come from South Africa.  They are incredibly useful in my bright border, where they like the full sun, tolerate drought, and, most importantly, provide late summer colour. Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ is probably the most dramatic.  It may not flower for as long as helenium, or rudbeckia, or echinacea, but its sculptural…

I’m not beautiful. I’m feisty.

This is a quote from my step-daughter.  To give you some context, we were having a discussion about someone being beautiful. ‘Like you.  You’re beautiful.’ ‘No I’m not.  I’m feisty!‘ I love this.  I love that she chose feistiness over beauty.  She is feisty.  And beautiful.  But she chose to identify as feisty. When I…

The Rose Garden at the end of June

I wrote a post called The Rose Garden at the start of June, so I thought I should write one about it at the end of June. I’ll go around anti-clockwise, the same way I walked last time.  Rosa ‘Emma Hamilton’ first. She is lush, isn’t she? You can see how in the bottom right of…

The Oldies

The David Austin English roses have been getting a lot of my attention, but I shouldn’t forget where it all began.  Many of the Plush, crimson English roses have Gallicas in their heritage. I grow three Gallica roses, ‘Charles de Mills’, ‘Tuscany Superb’ and ‘Sissinghurst Castle’. I grew ‘Charles de Mills’ at my old house.  Here…