Fit to Burst

The best buds of all are the oriental poppies. They wear thick woollen tights, but silk knickers beneath. This one is about to burst its breeches.

The Corner of Complete Neglect

We all have one, don’t we? This is mine. It is at the corner of the rose garden, next to the wall of the house.  It is tricky because it is bone-dry and has poor, stony soil that bakes hard to concrete in the summer. We inherited this rather lovely shrub rose, ‘Marjorie Fair’.  The…

Secrets of a Hacker

I have always enjoyed a good chop.  When I had Sindy dolls as a child, I always scalped them.  I can’t remember whether I thought the hair would grow back, or whether I just wanted them to look like me (I had short hair). I get the same thrill from hacking back plants.  Tidying them…

The Rose Garden at the start of June

I made my rose garden in the winter of 2016/17, and then extended it this last winter. The rose garden doesn’t cover a huge area.  It is about 7m x 5m.  I made the Bright Border a couple of years before the rose garden, incorporpating all of the showstopper plants I love.  But now I…

Lupin-otropolis

Before I get carried away with the peonies, I think I should just pause to appreciate the lupins. This is ‘Thunderclouds’, grown from seed last year, and now flowering prodigiously.  I’ve never noticed before the wispy calyx that nestles the newly-opened flowers.  It is like a fur stole, soon to be carelessly dropped as the…