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Jacinta D's Journal

Jacinta D's Journal September 2012

Last Post 1879 days 13 hours ago

Anemone

30 September 2012 21:31:14
Japanese double anemone

Japanese double anemone

I met up with Drumanagh (ALison) a few months ago in Skerries. She kindly gave me some plants. Here is one that opened yesterday. Looking forward to this getting bigger and better each year. Thanks, Drumanagh.

"I want a garden"

30 September 2012 20:08:30

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Didn't get out to the garden today until about 3.30, although Steve had more of an opportunity. Nowhere nearer 'planting' day. I hacked back the ivy on the dividing wall to the neighbours. Steve now has decided that the wall needs to be raised to take more soil (actually, I'm calling it 'muck' now). He will use boards to raise this. Another stumbling block, and another delay in my planting scheme. 

My garden is a mud bath right now. Didn't get a chance to cut the grass as it is so wet and it was lashing here again this morning. And with both of us traipsing muck all over the place, it has now blackened. My hands are tied. Muck in the dining room, good job it's floorboards. Muck all the way up the stairs. I want an outdoor toilet now. Spades, forks, trowels, mucky boots all lying up against the patio door. No point in putting them away at this stage. Otherwise things may be put on the long finger AGAIN.

Every day I go out, my silver birch is at a more horizontal position. Don't want to lose this. Affixed a proper stake yesterday but obviously not secure enough. So sorted that out finally today.

Rant over.

On a more positive note though, I managed to cut back my climbing rose, still to be cleaned up. Might as well add to the mess. Ooooh, I did say 'rant over'.

Tomorrow's another day.

The Early Bee

30 September 2012 07:41:45
The Early Bee

The Early Bee

It's amazing to see the bees still doing their thing at 7.30 in the morning. Ya jus gotta luv it!

*(&_^_*_)**^^&((A(&*^&*O)*&*

29 September 2012 21:50:45

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OMG I tried soooo hard to get out to the garden today. Sometimes family commitments can really get in the way. But where would we be without them. 

We were finally free at about 5.00. And it would have been all too easy to just vegetate indoors and put gardening on hold till tomorrow. But no, time is of the essence right now as the temps are starting to get cooler. And fibre-glass won't set in the cold. I know this from last year. Ok, we didn't do any fibre-glassing today, but got more soil onto the cave. Steve is happy to date. So next weekend he will apply just two more layers into the inside while I can hopefully get stuff planted. And while he is busy doing what he does best, it's giving me lots of time to decide what and where to plant things. 

No. 2

29 September 2012 20:54:06

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Here she comes.

He's back!!!

29 September 2012 10:33:21

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At the beginning of the summer I had to resort to putting netting over the Lower Pond as the visiting heron was lurking on a regular basis. Not about to lose any more fish, I put up with the pond looking ugly with the net over it. I didn't see the heron since then.

On Thursday, I removed the net, and was loving my Lower Pond again. But......

He's back!!!

The net goes back on today, regardless.

Polemonium

29 September 2012 06:57:38
Polemonium 'Stairway to Heaven'

Polemonium 'Stairway to Heaven'

Bought this gorgeous plant earlier in the year. When it started to go over, I cut a lot of it back in the hope......     2 days later, every shred of foliage had disappeared. Soooo disappointed. 

But look at it yesterday. Lookin' gud!     This is Polemonium 'Stairway to Heaven'. What a gorgeous name, don't you think?

Busy day

28 September 2012 21:18:00

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This morning I took cuttings of Fremontodendron. Liga had taken a few some weeks ago and informed me that nothing was happening. So they are now on heat inside the propagator. It's usually not in operation until March here. But, c'est la vie. Fingers crossed that I will have a few to share around.

While the weather was reasonably ok this morning, I gave a few sheets of Marine Ply some Creocote. These will be used tomorrow, weather permitting, to position over some of the cave soil to prevent a possible landslide. I had just got these done when Steve arrived home, skiving from work early, it being a Friday and all that. lol 

While they were drying, I donned the waders and uprooted my Atropa belladonna (Deadly Nightshade) from the Island in the pond. It needs to recuperate over the winter months after such a dastardly summer with rain and high winds. While in the pond, I took this opportunity to weed in at the greenhouse border, and observe.

I prepared a lot of Begonia tubers for the winter, drying off all the existing soil. But lots of them are still flowering. So that remains for another day. Also dried off some Hymenocallis bulbs.

In the greenhouse, I removed all tomato plants that have stopped producing, and cucumber plants. 

Dug up a few perennials that were totally in the wrong place, too tall, and potted them up.

Atropa belladonna

28 September 2012 14:42:22
Atropa belladonna

Atropa belladonna

Just dug up my prized Deadly Nightshade from the Island. Sadly, it was looking pretty delapidated after such a horrible summer, and a week of rain and wind, which broke off most of the remaining branches. The main plant is to be potted up until I decide where next to plant it.

In the soil were two fairly decent-sized roots that had come adrift. So they got potted up. If they take, they will be sent on to whoever is willing to give them a good home.

Eucalyptus

28 September 2012 00:26:39
Eucalyptus

Eucalyptus

This was getting way too tall for my liking so I got Steve to lop of the top ten feet. Aren't I so glad he did. It's now much more in proportion to the garden. The wall behind is about 7ft.

Surprise, surprise

27 September 2012 17:14:44
Pheasant bush

Pheasant bush

Evelyn (Feverfew) gave me a couple of Pheasant bushes a couple of years ago in exchange for some Rock Dust. They got planted, not giving them half the space that they deserved. However, space was a priority here, as you all know, and I just bunged them in when a space became available. I thought nothing much about them really, if I'm honest. But I do love the colour and shape of the leaves. Today I spotted something unusual from the corner of my eye as I passed it by. Wahoo, a flower. Now there's a surprise! I didn't realize it flowered. It is definitely worth a permanent, suitable home now. Thanks again, Evelyn.

Can someone give me the latin name, please?

Late colour

26 September 2012 23:05:29
Late colour

Late colour

This clematis (Polish Spirit) nearly got the Chelsea chop earlier in the season as it was covered, I mean absolutely covered, in aphids. However, laziness took its toll on me once again and I left it to its own devices. Aren't I glad I did. It's looking great right now.

Acidanthera

26 September 2012 21:07:24
Acidanthera

Acidanthera

These flowered so well for me last year that I thought I would try and get them to flower for me again. With the bad summer that we had, I decided to keep them in the greenhouse. All to no avail, even though I fed them fortnightly. Not worth keeping for a second year. We live and learn.

Idle promises

26 September 2012 19:53:12

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Gosh, off all week and with this blasted weather I haven't been able to get anything of note done in the garden since Sunday. Running errands most of today and called in to see Dad. He has a terrific display of passiflora caerulea in his front garden, growing as ground cover. Don't know why I have never tried this from seed before. Lots of seeds pods available for me to collect tomorrow. Will have plenty to share around.

His nerines are also starting to open. No sign on mine at all and I only live 2 minutes away in the car. Hmmmm!!!

A bad year for these also.

25 September 2012 21:07:50
Tomato 'Totem' (maybe tomorrow)

Tomato 'Totem' (maybe tomorrow)

Grew 'Alicante', 'Shirley' and 'Totem'. I have yet to witness a ripe 'totem'. Maybe when the sun shines tomorrow. Ha ha ha ha! And pigs can fly!

A bad year for......

25 September 2012 20:30:12
Malus 'Elstar'

Malus 'Elstar'

Ok, I only possess two apple trees. And both are in pots. One is Malus domestica 'Redlane' which has produced niente this year. I have a total of three on 'Elstar'. But, boy, are they looking delectable.

Ahead of the posse

25 September 2012 18:45:25

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8 Hippeastrums were planted on 5th Sept. This one has just opened. Seven more different ones to come.

Fairy Princess

24 September 2012 20:39:28
Fairy Princess

Fairy Princess

Kaffir lily 'Fairy Princess' showed itself yesterday. There is another small clump coming up just beside it. Wahoo! It just gets better and better. And I love its gentle colour.

Wet, wet, wet!

24 September 2012 20:17:25

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What a rotten day here in Dublin. It was coming down in torrents at 4.00am when I got up and it let up for a mere 3 minutes during late afternoon. All good for settling the soil on top of the cave.

Early this morning I decided to get my bookshelves ready for some winter reading, tidied the whole lot up, and discovered a book lent to me early in the year by Rachel. Ooops!  Sorry, didn't realize that I still had it. However, it's safe, and I hope to get more of it read tomorrow.

And as I couldn't get out much in the garden today, I decided to bring the plants inside by resuming my oil painting. Normally I would paint landscapes, seascapes or birds, feeling that flowers and plants in oil were a bit intimidating. However, in the last couple of weeks I have decided to bite the bullet and concentrate on flowers/plants alone for a while.

In the three minutes rain-free time today, I observed how well all my geraniums have done this year despite the rotten weather. It just goes to show that they really don't need so much pampering in blistering hot sunshine.

Solanum

24 September 2012 19:14:57
Solanum

Solanum

This little solanum crispum 'Glasnevin' was bought yonks ago at the beginning of the summer in Aldi (9cm pot for, I think, €2.49). Didn't think it would do anything, but 'lo and behold it flowered in all that rain today! Bless his cotton socks!!! I think it's a bit too tiny, and probably too late in the season to plant it out, so I reckon a bigger pot and a winter in the greenhouse might do the trick.

Taming the wilderness for the LAST time!

24 September 2012 05:36:23
Suckers?

Suckers?

I do remember taming my 'wild' part of the garden a few years ago just after joining this site. Basically it was only a case of digging out weeds and levelling. But I always got lazy after it had been done, and each year after that I had to tame the wilderness yet again.

Last year when Steve started this project, the wilderness became more like a dumping ground, for the soil that he dug out. And thus burying the trunks of shrubs up further than I was happy about. It's lashing out there right now but I'm hoping I can manage to spread out the soil later for the last time, to release the Photinia and Euonymous. Yesterday I noticed some roots on the Photinia, or maybe they're suckers growing where I removed some of the soil that it has been sitting in since last year. 

Sometimes little is good.

23 September 2012 21:57:23
Sometimes little is good.

Sometimes little is good.

Sowed very few seeds here this year. And the few I sowed weren't in as much bulk as last year. I spotted these today, thinking they were Tanacetum. Wrong again!!!!! No label. Doesn't matter though, as most stuff is starting to go over. It came as a welcome surprise.

Cosmos

23 September 2012 20:56:07
Loving this one

Loving this one

Can't remember which cosmos seeds I sowed this year. Most of them ended up white, which I love next to blue. But I must admit to loving this pink one, in the same mix, with its lovely 'fluted' petals.

Progress - slow

23 September 2012 20:05:29

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We managed to shift another ton of soil over the cave between the two of us. But in all fairness, Steve did the bulk of it. Most of my time was spent on top of the cave compressing soil, as much as I could, and weeding what was being thrown up. I admit I get a bit bored if the work in the garden isn't more physical. But I'm off tomorrow, and Steve isn't!!!!

We came up against a stumbling block - more foundations of the shed that was previously in this area. Steve managed to hack away a lot of it with lump hammer. But it really needs something more powerful. Hopefully he can borrow the relevant equipment in his job.

The soil was beginning to fall down into the 'pond' area as soon as it was being piled on top. So I came up with the idea of wedging slates in a stepping stone fashion (previously used a couple of years ago for the 'paved' circle before the greenhouse pond). I knew they would come in useful at some stage. 

I apologize if these journals about the 'cave' seem boring.

The best part

23 September 2012 08:21:13
Thingy in the compost

Thingy in the compost

of this cave/pond project for me is about to happen. Today should see most of the remaining two tons of soil placed over the cave and tomorrow I should be able to get stuck in. I have lots on the list of what will go in, probably way too much. But we'll see how I get on. Very ordinary plants/shrubs but will no doubt replace some with more unusual plants as time goes on.

Here are some from the list:

Tamarisk

Deadly Nightshade

Fremontodendron (in Spring, or later this year)

Sumac (thanks Fran)

Sedums 

Ajuga reptans

Santolina

Saxifraga fortunei 'Blackberry & Apple Pie'

Eupatorium (Joe Pyeweed)

Gazillions of Tete-a-tetes

Primroses and primulas

Today I will be ready to add the contents of my compost bin to the topmost soil and work it in well. Just inspecting the compost yesterday and found this weird looking thingy, almost like a very thin cowpat. No sign of insects, or nests, or anything obvious. So I have no idea what it is. It took a bit of effort to break it up. Anyone know what it is???

 

Showing his 'feminine side'.

22 September 2012 21:50:12

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Had great pleasure with Zoe and wee Davey today. David couldn't get enough of the garden and he must have been exhausted by the time they went home. He dug, and dug, and dug for Ireland with Steve. But the best thing to see was his obvious love of plants and things of beauty. He spent ages just sniffing everything in the garden.

Productive day

22 September 2012 20:32:31
Productive day

Productive day

My first day of my hols was spent cooking a slap up fry for my daughter, Zoe, and grandson, David. After it had been digested David was dying to get out to help Steve digging and throwing soil on top of the cave. Wee Davey needs a lot of practice at throwing. He was watching Steve throwing the bigger stones 'over the wall'. Steve was delighted with the little bit of 'male' company. Can you imagine what they'll be getting up to when wee Davey is older and stronger????

When Zoe and David went home, work began in earnest. Between us we got about 2 tons of soil shifted on top of the cave. There must be at least another 2 tons to go.

I also managed to get the grass cut, something which had been on hold for the last two weeks, and cut back to make the borders look a lot tidier. The weather was perfect for garden work. 

Medicinal purposes, of course!

21 September 2012 20:08:00
Medicinal purposes, of course!

Medicinal purposes, of course!

Starting my weeks holidays from this evening. Just down with the doc. Bad case of bronchitis, and he said I looked quite dehydrated. Hmmmmm,  easily rectified, me thinks!!

Transplant

21 September 2012 19:22:46
Transplant

Transplant

I was hoping to transplant my Fremontodendron down to the new area at some stage as I would prefer the greenhouse area to contain low plants.  But it is still in full flower, and doesn't look like it may stop anytime soon. So I think it may be unwise to move it just yet. Advice welcome.

Seedlings

21 September 2012 07:11:36
Primula denticulata seedlings

Primula denticulata seedlings

I think it may have been Conrad who sent me these primula denticulata seeds. I sowed them, and put them out of my mind completely (in other words.....I forgot I had them).

But now that they have germinated, would it be wiser to leave them as they are for a while, or try to separate?

Mojo back BIG TIME

20 September 2012 20:42:54
Mojo back BIG TIME

Mojo back BIG TIME

A lot of personal trauma going on here for the last 18 months. Today saw the end of all that crap. Now it's out with the old, in with the new. Lots of plans. Will be revealed at a later stage. 

With my week off next week, I hope to plant a few shrubs into the NEW area. Hail, rain or snow I will get that other 2 ton of soil on top of the cave and start planting in earnest.

Lovin' this

20 September 2012 06:00:45

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Soft and billowy. Miscanthus sinensis 'Ferner Osten' is one of my favourite grasses.

You learn something new every day

19 September 2012 19:40:38

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Our first lot of Autumn/Winter bedding usually starts with 6packs of what are known as Yodder Chrysanthemums. And I hate them with a passion. They deteriorate so quickly once they come in. They don't sell quickly enough and then we're left to reduce, reduce, reduce, until they are looking rightly 'shoddy'. I hate them. 

However, last year I was asked to plant some up in the raised gravel area in the garden centre for display purposes, and to promote sales of same. I usually advise customers that they will put on maybe twice their height at the most, after planting out. I left these ones in the ground over the winter, expecting to replace them when they started to go over. That didn't happen. And in fact, this year they are like a small flowering hedge, about 18 inches tall. One of the managers wanted me to replace them a few weeks ago and I refused. Today they opened up, just like I knew they would. He was looking at them today, and I knew he was silently admitting defeat. Hee hee!

Leucothoe

19 September 2012 06:29:03
Leucothoe walteri 'Rainbow'

Leucothoe walteri 'Rainbow'

Leucothoe walteri 'Rainbow' is turning nicely now. Off next week so I hope to get this finally planted into my Acid Triangle that is no longer a triangle!!! It will look well with the foliage of the blueberries.

And if I don't manage to get the new area planted up at the weekend, I can do it at my leisure when I'm off. No pressure. 

Santolina chamaecyparrisus

18 September 2012 21:02:23
Santolina chamaecyparrisus

Santolina chamaecyparrisus

I reduced this poor, sad, sausage from €7.99 to 50c today, and bought it. It has lovely aromatic foliage. But if anyone has any experience on how it's grown to perform at its best, I'd love to hear about it.

Posting this photo.....

18 September 2012 19:57:51
Kniphofia 'Bee's Lemon'

Kniphofia 'Bee's Lemon'

just because I love it.

Beautiful giants

18 September 2012 19:05:14
This may be white (and a biggie)

This may be white (and a biggie)

Steve bought me 8 different varieties of Hippeastrums during the Tall Ships Festival in August. I potted up 4 of them on 5th September. One of them, which I suspect may be white, stands now at almost 17 inches, and has three flower stems. While I was out at work today, it has made up its mind that it may open within the next few days. Can't wait to see this one.

Nice!

17 September 2012 20:31:44

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I didn't manage to get anything done this evening. But Steve was home from work early and got more of yesterdays work done. Every little helps. Wow, I picked FIVE ripe tomatoes today. Things are looking up. :) A bit of a nip in the air today.

This evenings sunset was really nice.

Tomatoes may be slow, but

16 September 2012 20:40:25
Tomatoes may be slow, but

Tomatoes may be slow, but

Boy, are my blueberries ripening fast and furious. Picking at least two breakfast bowlfuls every day. And the foliage is now changing to a gorgeous shade. They don't seem to be bothered by birds at all this year, which can only be good for me!

Shovelling muck!

16 September 2012 18:21:33
Taking a break

Taking a break

No gardening done today. Instead we both spent the day shovelling at least a ton of muck/soil, and lovely soil it is too, behind the cave. It also had to be tamped down to reduce any air pockets. Not exactly a warm day, and very windy. But all the exertion had us in a permanent sweat. The level of soil is now half way up around the cave, and very close to my new planting opportunities. Hopefully we'll get more done tomorrow evening. Plenty of beer breaks for Steve, to keep him motivated. Things are definitely on 'the up'.

The pond itself may take a while yet, but at least the planting can get done before the colder months approach. It was such a pleasure to have finally finished my weekends in work until next year, so I could help Steve out with this mammoth project that he has undertaken. Will put up an album after dinner.

Water Butts

16 September 2012 06:51:05
Water Butts

Water Butts

Well, aren't I glad that Steve turned our Green Bin into a water butt last year. There has been so much rain that I have only ever had to use the outdoor tap and hose a handful of times . But at other times, this is what I have been using. It hasn't frightened off any slugs or snails, though.

I trust him implicitly!

15 September 2012 22:05:11

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I had to pass the rods through the back of the cave so Steve could guide them into the bored holes. The dark shadow in the photo is Steve's backside overhead, sitting on the outside of the fibreglass cave!  :)  

And the 'Eye in the Sky' hovered above, just in case there was an emergency air-lift needed.

Cave Up-date

15 September 2012 21:32:27

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We were slow to get started this morning as I was having a rare lie-in. But when we did, we overcame a major step.

Steve bored holes into the two outside garden walls, and behind the back of the cave. These were for the purpose of inserting tie-rods, or anchors to stabilize and secure the cave. He drilled into the wall a couple of inches and filled with Hilti Hy 170, which is a chemical cement. The rod had to go through the cave wall to the other side and into the boundary wall. This was allowed to set, at all three points of the cave. When it was set, Steve was only then able to tighten the nuts to make it all hard and fast. Tomorrow will see the first load of soil being placed over the cave for planting. And Steve can continue to apply further layers of fibreglass underneath, to give added strength. True to his word, "It will be completed by the end of September" ie. tomorrow!!!!!!

Tomatoes

15 September 2012 07:03:12
First Beefsteak to ripen

First Beefsteak to ripen

I've never had such a bad year for tomatoes, like most people here I reckon. Only in the last three to four weeks have things started to ripen. ANd I'd be lucky to get maybe 2 or three each day.

Yesterday saw the first signs of my beefsteak tomatoes ripening. But this one in my hand actually looks like a group of tomatoes. It's only one!

Coca Cola

14 September 2012 20:32:43
Coca Cola

Coca Cola

I posted a photo of this sedum cauticola 'Coca Cola' a couple of weeks ago, not realizing that it hadn't opened fully. This is how it looks this evening. And is a great spreader.

Hibiscus has the 'blues'

14 September 2012 18:27:58
Blue Hibiscus sulking

Blue Hibiscus sulking

I was so looking forward to my blue Hibiscus opening. It was looking likely yesterday. But this evening it had become all crinkled and far from showing its beauty. He must have been curling up to protect himself from the strong gusts today. If only the sun would come out a bit more, and temperatures would rise. It's not looking like it will open at this late stage :(  Very sad about this.

Better late than never (Kniphofia' Bee's Lemon')

14 September 2012 06:07:50

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Here it is finally. Every year the snails ravage the flowers just as they are coming up. I managed to put the copper tape around the stems of two of them before that happened. But the stems come up stealthily over night and before you know it, they've been eaten. Found three stems that had been sheared off on the ground when taking this photo. I think this may be moved to a pot for next year, where I can keep a better eye on them.

All growth welcome!

13 September 2012 19:30:15
Hedychium 'Tahitan Flame' today

Hedychium 'Tahitan Flame' today

Rachel gave me this Hedychium earlier in the year and advised me to position it in the brightest possible place indoors until the temps warmed up. However, bright positions are a bit limited here in winter/early spring months. And over time, the stems started to rot away. I was disgusted, as it was a plant I had really sought out.

But as soon as the temperatures became more reliably warm, I put it out into the greenhouse and it steadily improved. It did have a short spell outdoors, but it's now back in the greenhouse. It looks nice and healthy now, but no sign of a flower. I can wait. Even if I have to wait until next year. Thanks again, Rachel.

Miscanthus for Fran

13 September 2012 16:49:14
Miscanthus floridulus

Miscanthus floridulus

No, I'm not giving you mine. Just letting you see what you have to look forward to. Brilliant plant.

Hot! Hot! Hot!

11 September 2012 20:36:14
They warm the cockles of your heart!

They warm the cockles of your heart!

Ooooh, loving stir-fries with these 'Cayenne' chilipeppers, added to the other vital ingredients. Only one plant and, having picked them regularly over the last two weeks, there are still about 30 or more to go.

Eucomis

11 September 2012 06:43:42
Eucomis bicolour

Eucomis bicolour

There's a distinct chill in the air this morning.

I hope to overwinter this eucomis bicolour but not sure whether I should remove all compost and dry store, or leave it in its pot and bring into the greenhouse. All advice welcome.

ANother day of stocktake, but as a result I get tomorrow off. Wahoo!

Pond Plant

10 September 2012 06:31:07
Sagittaria latifolia

Sagittaria latifolia

Its the arrowhead-shaped leaves on this Sagittaria latifolia that drew me to this plant from the beginning.

Eccremocarpus

09 September 2012 22:30:03

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Well, I was soooo envious of Myrtle a couple of weeks ago when I saw her Eccremocarpus in full flower outside, up against a wall. Mine was/is flowering in the greenhouse alright. But not the one planted in a big pot with a climbing rose outside. Well, that was......until today! Love it!

Good day

09 September 2012 21:30:29

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In work early this morning for the stocktake. But got back home earlier than expected. Cleaned up the honeysuckle and jasmine from yesterday, and spent a good bit of time cutting back and bagging. Noticed my gorgeous blue hibiscus about to flower. Oooh, can't wait for that. Didn't think it was going to come back.

Weeded the gravel under the pergola, and the gravel area in front of the greenhouse. Emptied baskets and planters of summer bedding. Tidied up the yard area. When Steve had the cave in the middle of the garden, I had less places to put these pots so they all ended up in the yard and I had to pick my way very gingerly to the outside tap. All sorted now. During the week I had neglected watering stuff outside, so I gave everything a good soak finally. Hazel's willow was looking a bit on the dry side, but having left the hose on it for 5 full minutes, it made a miraculous comeback. 

I only put this Canna out yesterday. But the wind is starting now so it's back in. Won't get out to the garden at all tomorrow as I'm on a 13hr shift.

Blue is THE colour!

08 September 2012 20:20:19
Blue is THE colour!

Blue is THE colour!

Woah, what a day. And the first of my official weekends off. Had to go out to lunch with Dad, and had great intentions for the garden when I got home. That didn't happen. Steve was busy cutting back the Jasmine and Honeysuckle when I got back. They were the two major jobs that I had planned on tackling today. So, as it was being looked after by himself, I had no choice but to pour a drink to avoid dehydration. Just look at the sky we had today. And to think we have had to wait until now to get that!!!

What the ......

08 September 2012 19:59:11
Hippeastrum gone into 'overdrive'.

Hippeastrum gone into 'overdrive'.

Steve bought me eight different Hippeastrums during the Tall Ships Festival. I only potted 4 of them last Wednesday. Today when I went to the garage to retrieve the last of the four, I was gobsmacked when I saw the growth it had put on in just a matter of days. It measures 9 and a half inches already. Bloody Hell!

Colour for Kitty

08 September 2012 07:58:55
Colour for Kitty

Colour for Kitty

Michelle, photo as promised. I was mistaken about the Purple Palace. It is in fact Plum Pudding. The other two are Key Lime Pie and Creme Brulee (both of which I think I have seen in your photos). Not sure yet whether all three of these will go into the one planter, or whether I'll split them up. Will play around with them first.

Gerbera

08 September 2012 06:06:25
Hardy Gerbera

Hardy Gerbera

It's good to know that this hardy gerbera is doing what it says on the tin. I was a bit concerned there for a while.

Autumn/Winter colour

07 September 2012 22:05:13

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Whether we want to hear it or not, it's coming.

I've been very good recently.

07 September 2012 20:56:45
Erysimum 'Citrona Mix'

Erysimum 'Citrona Mix'

Back to work at least three weeks now after being off sick for a while. And today was the first real day I bought anything of note. I couldn't get over the amount of butterfly photos people have been posting in recent days, but whenever I go near any with the camera, off they pop. 

However, in the garden centre today, whilst also concentrating on my work, I noticed that  these wallflowers were the real magnets for both hoverflies and butterflies. So I had to buy a few. They are reputed to be hardy, so they tick all the boxes. Also got three different heucheras to put into a nice pot. All with contrasting foliage for the winter months.

Last week saw the end of my weekends in work until 2013 (although I have to do a few hours on Sunday for the biannual Stocktake). Happy Days! So tomorrow after lunch I hope to get really stuck in, and draw as many butterflies into my garden as possible.

This years 'no-shows'.

07 September 2012 20:40:17

Free Accommodation

07 September 2012 06:34:49
Free Accommodation

Free Accommodation

I bought this in Aldi last year. It's supposed to attract all kinds of bugs and creepy-crawlies that are good for the garden, but particularly attractive to Lacewings. I'm beginning to wonder is it doing anything at all to keep other pests at bay. No sign of life in it. ANd I have checked on regular occasions throughout the year. However, I suppose I'll leave it be. Who knows, maybe they saw me coming and decided to 'high-tail' it.

One small step for man.....

06 September 2012 20:39:45
One small step for man.....

One small step for man.....

Well, I must say Steve certainly has made the most of his week off, and luckily the weather has been on his side for once. He has made great inroads on the latest project. And this evening, we both managed to lift the cave up over plants in the Island in the greenhouse pond (without wrecking anything) and now have the cave in situ. Tomorrow will entail lots of tweaking, making sure the shape of the pond will match the shape of the cave. 

But the best part is that Steve got the grass cut (it hasn't been done in three whole weeks so it's looking a bit rough). But I hope to do another cut on Saturday to even it up a bit. And I now have my Clothes Line back. Sad, or what?  LOL

Miss Bateman

06 September 2012 06:50:11
Miss Bateman

Miss Bateman

Clematis 'Miss Bateman' has returned for her final fling!

I like this

05 September 2012 21:31:59
Variegated Honeysuckle

Variegated Honeysuckle

While Steve spent the day underground, I flitted about with my daughter and grandson enjoying myself. But when I got back, I did a lot of tidying up in the garden, cutting back Escallonia and Honeysuckle that I had allowed to grow a bit mad.  Filled 2 big black sacks so that has made a major difference in the look of the place.

Biddy gave me this lovely variegated Honeysuckle, that she grew from cuttings, when we are at Kate & Graham's Open Day. It opened today. The flowers are a bit smaller than your average Honeysuckle, it's very pretty.

Thanks, Biddy.

Trick of light

05 September 2012 08:59:49

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Click to zoom

Click to zoom

Sitting at the dining table this morning when the sun reached the garden. Noticed what looked like unusual flowers from my Deadly Nightshade in the greenhouse pond. Went to investigate further and felt such an idiot. I mean, the flowers appeared in early summer, so why did I think it was producing flowers (and way bigger than earlier in the year, and even a different colour!!! ). It was just a trick of light with the sun shining on it. Looks cool, though.

ID please!

04 September 2012 21:05:48
ID please!

ID please!

The time for my 'new planting area' is drawing ever closer. I got this plant from Liga last year and can't remember what it is? I'm wondering will it be suitable for an area that will get sun for at least half of the day, and will be in well-drained soil.

Monarch's Velvet

04 September 2012 18:52:00
Potentilla 'Monarch's Velvet'

Potentilla 'Monarch's Velvet'

Cut back my self-sown sweet pea this evening. Oooh, now the neighbours can see us. :) Top-dressed my Camellias and watered them well, then gave them a good feed.

Planning my jobs for tomorrow, and even though there is still lots in flower, I will be cutting back stuff in a desperate attempt to make things look tidier. The cave is taking over the garden right now and I need a bit of order in my life.

It's now time for Potentilla 'Monarch's Velvet' to steal the show.

Mentha

04 September 2012 06:36:44
Mentha aquatica (Watermint)

Mentha aquatica (Watermint)

It's nice to have some late-flowering pond plants. Got this one last year, but it's flowering for the first time now. Cute little plant, and is a lot more well-behaved than its land-loving cousin. Supposed to be hardy too!

Variety is the spice of life

03 September 2012 21:10:23

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Click to zoom

Two different flowers on the one plant.  I like it.

Spiders

03 September 2012 20:16:11

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Click to zoom

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I have never seen so many cobwebs in my garden as this year. This evening while picking blueberries for tomorrow's breakfast, I was startled by the speed of this massive spider in his web amongst the blueberry bushes when I obviously disturbed him. I mean, he was bigger than a euro coin. 

Here she comes!

03 September 2012 06:26:00
Here she comes!

Here she comes!

My garden must be a lot more exposed than Frans on the Southside. My Kniphofia 'Bee's Lemon' has decided it will flower after all. The year before last, the emerging flowers were chewed to bits by snails. So last year I wrapped the copper tape around the flower stems and it worked a treat. Did just that yesterday evening. This one is too pretty for snails to include on their menu. :)

Coca Cola

02 September 2012 22:09:17
Sedum cauticola 'Coca-Cola

Sedum cauticola 'Coca-Cola

This is a nice sedum coming into flower right now.

He's a bloody genius

02 September 2012 21:02:29

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Well, last year when Steve came up with this brainwave of making a 'cave' within our final pond, I must admit having doubts as to whether he would be able to 'come up with the goods'. It was October before any work was actually done on this project. I knew it would be the wrong time, as the fibreglass needed heat for the layers to 'go off'. However, Steve plodded on with his idea. The weather this year has been so crap that he hadn't been able to devote much time to his project. But over the last few weeks, he clutched the odd good day and made the most of it. This last week, in particular, has been most suitable for work on same. He even took time off work at the end of the week to progress further.

I got in from work this evening and he had completed three full coats of fibreglass, AND removed the original Chicken Wire and copper tubing that formed the template of the cave. Looking at it this evening, it looked magical. It gave the impression almost of an Ice Cave. But la creme de la creme was when Steve proved to me the strength of the structure. This cave will eventually have the soil ,that has been dug out to form the pond, placed on top of it. And it has to be strong enough to withstand the weight of that, PLUS my weight, so I can plant into it. He is surely a genius. He is now taking next week off so he can complete it. Steve 'ticks ALL my boxes'. And he's NOT for hire!!!  He's all mine!!

Too focussed

02 September 2012 07:07:51
So Pretty (Nandina Domestica)

So Pretty (Nandina Domestica)

I'm way too focussed on tasks in hand in work. Half of the time I don't see the beauty that is around me. Thanks to Frans recent journal, I witnessed firsthand the stripey stems of Bamboos in the garden centre. And yesterday also, I noticed the beauty in the delicate flowers of Nandina domestica, which Andy spoke about. Mine only got planted out last year and I'm still waiting for it to flower. But now I know what I have to look forward to. Thanks Andy, and Fran.

Like a man possessed

01 September 2012 21:03:08

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Click to zoom

What a brilliant day. Lots accomplished in work. Delighted that it remained dry enough for long enough, so I could apply Mossgo to the whole Garden Centre. This is my third time this year to apply it. But rain fell shortly afterwards on each occasion, and washed it all away. By the time I was clocking out, I could see the results. Tomorrow I'll just use a good stiff brush to sweep away the residue. Job satisfaction.

I also was more observant with our bamboos and noticed similar stripes to Fran's, on Phyllostachys aureosulcata 'Spectabilis'. I don't know why I never took the time to notice this before.

Laughed at Steve when I got home. His gloved hands were sticking to everything he touched with resin. He took time off work yesterday and Thursday to do more work on the cave. Tomorrow he hopes to be able to remove the chicken wire that formed the template. And over the next week or two will put on at least 6 more full coats of fibreglass. It looks like I might have an Open Day next year after all. :)

Lily the Pink

01 September 2012 07:07:06
Lily the Pink

Lily the Pink

I love this deeper shade of waterlily. Upper Pond producing lots more lilies than ever before. Good news. And the pond basically looks after itself, which is even better.

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