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JoanG's Journal

JoanG's Journal

Last Post 2 days 3 hours ago

Gardening talk with a difference

03 October 2017 22:20:47

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Last week Myrtle and I went to a fantastic talk on autumn interest perennials given by Rosy Hardy of Hardy's Cottage Garden Plants, a specialist nursery in Hampshire.  

Now most speakers give their talks based around a slide show but Rosy went one better; she came over to Dublin in her van and brought the plants with her!  They were lined up on the platform at the start of the evening and as she proceeded with her talk, she picked them up one by one so we could see their merits in reality, arranged them in a 'border', and we could go up after the talk for a closer look.  Rosy did also show slides towards the end of the evening, mainly to illustrate what the plants she had chosen for their autumn foliage looked like when in flower earlier in the year and also show other recommendations.  Her plants were stunning and included quite a few I had never heard of before, including the gorgeous Lespedeza thunbergii shown here (photo from Hardy's website). 

There was a raffle for a few choice specimens and a good selection of plants for sale too.  Pity the garden here is already too full :-(  Both Myrtle and I fancied two Amsonias which had lovely bronze foliage but were not for sale, Amsonia 'Ernst Pagels' and Amsonia ciliata.  If any of you grow these I'd be interested in your opinion of them. 

A terrific speaker and a most enjoyable evening; if she is ever speaking in your area, go along, you won't be disappointed. 

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Jacinta D Jacinta D 04 October 2017 08:57:01

That sounds like time well spent, Joan. It's nice to have people go the extra mile. I think it shows a real passion for what they do.

Gracedieu Lass Gracedieu Lass 04 October 2017 09:23:19

I was hoping to get to see her at the Alpine Hardy Plant Society in Cork on Thursday last, but it was Ben's first birthday and we were in Clonlara. I do grow an Amsonia, but cannot remember which one (it will come to me later) blue flowers early summer and about eighteen inches high.

TerriShoos TerriShoos 04 October 2017 10:40:06

Lovely to listen to people with passion. I went with a friend to the Mr Middleton Spring Planting event at Citywest on Dublin. Frances and Iain MacDomandl were very good - she's hilarious. 

TerriShoos TerriShoos 04 October 2017 10:40:40

That should have been MacDonald of course - better get to Specsavers!


Scrubber Scrubber 04 October 2017 13:36:23

Lovely journal Joan. Sorry you didnt win in the raffle!

Elizabeth7 Elizabeth7 04 October 2017 17:25:32

So agree Joan we had Rosy to speak last Thursday  and as you say it was a very different approach but worked so well.She is an excellent speaker . Lots of goodies in the Raffle but I made a quick getaway as it was a bad night weatherwise . Margaret and Ted often win at the Raffle so I must find out if their luck held.!

I had ordered a few plants in advance so was carrying two bags as I made my exit!!

Jackie Jackie 05 October 2017 07:43:24

That sounds like a wonderful talk and to actually see each plant individually too makes it all the more special. You have some gorgeous Autumn colour in your own garden. Lovely photos. 

Fleurette Fleurette 05 October 2017 22:06:28

Sounds like a really good talk, Joan.  I am so glad you enjoyed it.  Does you good, doesn’t it?  

I bought an Amsonia illustris during my visit to Scotland in July.  (Ozark Blue Star) It apparently likes sandy, rocky soils and this one grows to 90cm. It certainly is showing great colour in the doliage at the moment.  

Which pulmonaria is on the right of the lovely display of your Autumn colour?  

Hosta Hosta 06 October 2017 19:47:18

I agree, it was a great talk and nice to have a different approach from a speaker.  Bought a couple of nice bits.

Our luck was not in on this occasion Elizabeth.

JoanG JoanG 06 October 2017 20:16:50

Elizabeth, you are well organised!  What did you buy?

Margot, the pulmonaria is 'Blake's Silver', a really good plant with the silvery foliage holding well all year.  It was originally said to have flowers that stayed pink but my plant has pink and blue flowers.  I have it a couple of years and it's big enough to divide now; would you like some? 

Fleurette Fleurette 06 October 2017 20:47:29

You are so kind, Joan.  I asked the question to verify my identification of the plant a few years ago when I was given this plant, unnamed, by a friend.  

It is a superb one to have.  On the whole I do not like pulmonaria, but of course the early bees love those flowers.  Blue and pink with mine as well.  When the bees have decided that the well has run dry, and move off, I cut off all the foliage and in a few weeks, a lovely fresh plant has  developed.  Here, they seed quite easily.  

Such a lovely ”designer” filler for the front of the border.  


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