Six-on-Saturday 23-02-2019

I decided to tidy the central flowerbed this week because the ivy seemed to be smothering the bird bath. This was a bigger job than I anticipated, as you will see later. I also thought it was time to prune the mint before it swamped the herb garden and the autumn fruiting raspberries needed to be cut down too. This has been a lovely week weatherwise…. lucky, retired old me!

I will get straight into this week’s Six-on-Saturday to show you the results of my efforts.

1)

First, anyone who remembers my inaugural Six-on-Saturday will recognise the orchid that has flowered consistently for 7 years now. It is as good as its first year still!

2)

The first dwarf irises from our generous relative are flowering now. There are some tulips and daffodils behind them in the troughs but there are no signs of imminent bursting into bloom, yet.

3)

The ivy had a huge root which I had to saw off. There was a whole tubtrug, plus more, full of the ivy I removed, but at least you can now see the soil, the shrubs, some bulbs and plants which had been completely covered! Much tidier but a bit bare. The rocks/stones/boulders are items that various grandchildren brought back from their holidays. Their kind parents suggested they leave them with Granny for her garden rather than taking them back in their suitcases on the plane! (Yes, the lawnmower came out of hibernation this week.)

4)

Around the base of the bird bath, you may have noticed many of these strange fossils. As I worked my way around the garden when we first moved here, I kept digging up these fossils of varying sizes. I understand they are called “Devil’s teeth” or “Dragon’s toenails” or “Devils toenails” or……..etc. They were certainly better than the hardcore I dug up from the front flowerbed and what is now the little herb garden. (Six large bucketsful from the front flowerbed and two from the herb garden.)

5)

Garden tool of the week.

This was passed on to me from my father-in-law. It must be even older than me! (No comments, thank you.) It does creak every time I use it (not me, the fork) but, at the moment, the soil is not too heavy nor too hard so it saves a lot of bending down to pick up the weeds.

6)

A broad bean……at last!!. I have given up trying the old seeds and thrown them onto the compost heap. The new ones were planted a couple of weeks ago and here is the result. Now to try the new Sweet peas!

Just remembered, I went to get a sack of potting compost and came home with that….and another and two clematis and a pack of Sweet pea seeds.

That’s it for this week. The forecast is fine here for the weekend and I hope where you are, too.

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Six-on-Saturday 16-02-2019

What a beautiful few days we have had this week. I found it rather too warm to work in the greenhouse so did a bit more weeding in the front garden. I did do some tidying (see later) and, unwittingly, was thinking along the same lines as Mr P, constructing some extra greenhouse shelving. My attempt has two layers and brick supports (see later) although the shelves may not be as wide as his.

We had a very nice day with Mr and Mrs P and the children last Sunday. We were fed homemade mincemeat swirls with our coffee and had a delicious lunch of chicken and chorizo casserole with broccoli and carrots (I’m not sure whether that included the remains of the snowman or not!), followed by a very tasty ginger cake. I had a guided tour of the estate and can confirm that the compost heap is going well and the disco lighting in the greenhouse is just as vivid as it looks in Mr Propagator’s tweets! There are hundreds of crocuses yet to appear but there are plenty on show already. The newly painted green planters are most impressive, too!

Here are my Six-on-Saturday for this week.

1)

You may remember that I was disappointed that one of my plants in the new white basket had suddenly died. I went with it to the garden centre and they gave me a completely new container rather than just a replacement for the dead plant. When I dug out the roots, I noticed lots of tiny white bugs wriggling around them…… not surprising that it died! The new arrangement has all greenery, as you can see at the back, and the leaves of one of the plants is most unusual, as you can see below.

The tips of the leaves seem to be forming new leaves – I will be interested to see how it develops.

2)

Here are the two stages of my extra shelving. The first idea was to use large plastic pots as supports but I decided that a firmer, safer option would be the bricks.

3)

In one of those pots, as you can see, the first hollyhock seedling has appeared! These were sown in November so have taken their time!

4)

Here we have really useful and, as far as I can tell, completely useless pieces of equipment. That broken golf club, as well as being indispensable for providing a hole in the clay soil in preparation for a bamboo support, is very useful for scraping out the softer mashed leaves that can clog up the shredder (with the machine unplugged, of course). Whereas the bamboo connectors have proved very awkward to hold together a “frame” over which I wanted to put my fleece. Any other suggestions as to what I can use them for?

5)

The garden is not quite a riot of colour, yet, but the primulas, crocuses and purple-nearly-sprouting broccoli are doing their best!

6)

The sunshine was rather too bright for a decent photo but I think you can see a big improvement since last week. I know I could still do better so I will keep working on it!

That’s it again. The forecast is good for us this weekend so maybe some more weeding to stop the celandine taking over! Enjoy your gardening!

Six-on-Saturday 09-02-2019

Good morning..,.certainly better than yesterday morning! I managed to rush out in the small “window” between the rain stopping and the light going, to get a few photos in the evening.

I’m trying to be positive about the lack of germination of my (admittedly rather old) seeds and some of the newer ones. I have planted some broad beans (new seeds) in the greenhouse, how long should I expect to wait for them to show at this time of the year? To be continued, I hope!

Here are my Six-on-Saturday for this week.

1)

If you look closely, you can see water in the dish under the indoor narcissi. I was rather puzzled as to why it wasn’t soaking up into the soil since it had been like this for a couple of days and yet the top of the soil was quite dry, even though I water from the top. Thinking about it, it may be because instead of using old broken pieces of flowerpots, I often use pieces of polystyrene since they are a bit lighter. That may be keeping the soil up out of reach of the water.

So, I have put the whole lot into a much larger one, as shown below then put much more water in. If you look at the plants a few days later, there is quite an improvement in growth.

(One is going berserk!) Can I risk carefully digging them up and replanting them, or should I just be patient?

2)

Snowdrops properly in flower now. I keep finding small clumps in new places yet the “old” places seem devoid of the plants. I don’t remember moving them around though!

3)

Buds on the apple trees. Looking a lot more promising than that poor plum tree.

(Those strings had suet and seed balls attached but it was too wet to step across the soil to remove them before the photo.) I am probably going to use it as a hanging post for flower baskets or a climbing frame for the clematis, this year anyway.

4)

I can JUST see some colour in the camelia buds! Not that I can compete with Jim but I am hoping for plenty of blooms this year. I am leaving the half-chewed leaves there because they look healthier than some of the others!

5)

This may be the last time we see this. I had left it to see whether it was just having a “rest” but I think it is time to say goodbye.😥

I am hoping to shred 😁 the twigs and use them as a mulch on some of the flowerbeds. If the weather is decent, I will do that next week.

6)

The other job for next week……TIDY THE GREENHOUSE!!

Well, we have been invited to have lunch with Mr and Mrs P on Sunday – looking forward to that. This is the first time we have seen them since Christmas so Granny’sGardenHimIndoors and I are getting quite excited! I will report back next week on the state of the compost heap and his plants and cuttings and the lunch.

Enjoy your weekend.

Six-on-Saturday 02-02-2019

This week has been a case of “too late” or “where’s the camera when I need it?” We had a very enjoyable few days in Cornwall and, as Jim had promised, the camelias were beautiful and at least two months ahead of us. (I forgot to take my camera with me to show you them as one of my Six-on-Saturday!) However, I didn’t see any magnolias. We have had a few centimetres of snow here but by the time I went out with the camera, it was starting to melt. Many of the photos would have looked better a couple of hours before!

Here are my Six-on-Saturday for this week.

1)

The sedum troughs are just as I wanted them. A little bit of colour and thriving on neglect. The other one is covered in snow, so I haven’t bothered to show it.

2)

The snow on the Brussels and the seed heads of the sedum. Quite pretty but already you can see the snow has melted somewhat.

3)

Tulips and daffodils continue to push up through the soil. There are the outlines of the flower buds showing on some of them.

4)

The raised bed with purple sprouting broccoli at the back and garlic at the front. I planted the garlic in November but I am not sure when it will be ready, or how can I tell? The Brussels to the left are still going strong – we must have had at least a dozen meals from them, so far.

5)

The magnolia stellata has a few more buds showing than last year. I think I will prune out some of those internal branches after it has finished flowering — it looks a little congested. The lichen on it is rather a pretty pale turquoise colour.

6)

This lily belonged to my father-in-law a long time ago. It sometimes has a couple of long stems with a cluster of flowers on each, but other times, like this year, the flower appears before the stem has come out properly.

That’s it, again. I am sure I am repeating some pictures but as the season progresses, there are differences showing.

Have a good weekend and enjoy your garden as much as you can.

Six-on-Saturday 26-01-2019

I rushed out yesterday while the sun was shining to grab a few photos. Mostly shoots and buds but I am anticipating great things soon! There are so many shoots showing through but they are growing very slowly. The broad bean and sweet pea seeds are not showing any signs of germination in the greenhouse, so I have bought some more of each and will try again! To be fair, the other seeds are a few years old.

Without further ado, here are my Six-on-Saturday for this week.

1)

I am getting a bit impatient waiting for the bathroom plant cuttings to show signs of life and the little shelf looks so bare, so I went to the local garden centre to find a replacement. I was wanting an upright, foliage plant but on the bargain shelf, this arrangement was reduced from £12.99 to £5.99 so it would have been rude not to, wouldn’t it……….? The middle plant should grow taller and may remain there once the others finish, or are moved to their own pots.

2)

Here are the shoots :- peonies, rhubarb and then the daffodils under the pruned lavender hedge. I think I mentioned that these daffodils have multiplied dramatically over the last few years. (Yes, plenty of tidying up to do around the shoots!)

3))

I bought “half a pint” of broad beans yesterday. I had forgotten that that was how they are measured! I will plant some of these this weekend in the greenhouse and see how they get on!

4)

Those crocuses look much prettier this week, even with all of the other plants and weeds muscling in!

5)

I planted a whole lot of very old bulbs that I found in the garage not expecting much but it looks as though an anemone has come alive!! I shall watch it carefully!

6)

The cat surveying his kingdom! To his right is the pot of fragrant, indoor narcissi which I planted in early November, I think. They showed green shoots quite quickly but have not progressed that much although they look healthy enough.

That’s it again. We are hoping for a few days away sometime soon but the weather forecast for Cornwall is pretty dismal progressing to awful! Never mind, we will take our souwesters and wellies plus a few good books and enjoy the food! Have a good weekend.

Six-on-Saturday 19-01-2019


Bit chilly today but not as much of a frost as was expected the last couple of days. The theme this week seems to be mostly mauve or purple…… by accident rather than by design.

Our youngest grandson is with us again this weekend so we will be making shortbread by popular demand from Granny’sGardenHimIndoors.

1)

These crocuses become rather a pale mauve by the time they open out. There is a reasonable number of them but I need to remove the forget-me-nots and that celandine, plus the perennial geranium to be able to see them properly!

2)

The packs of purple, white and purple-and-white tulips were planted last year and look quite healthy. Maybe this year I will have a decent display not eaten by whatever eats tulip bulbs!

3)

Is it pink or is it mauve? Debatable, but one of the less chewed primula plants in the garden. Plus the perennial geranium.

4)

Well, I reckon there is a purple look to these, especially on the back of the flower buds. That Hebe behind is growing well and looking good but no flowers since I planted it about 12 years ago. Never mind, that perennial geranium will provide colour, as always!

5)

I can’t find any more purple, so on to white to finish. Nearly flowering snowdrops! I will photograph them again when they actually flower.

6)

The strangely named “Money Plant”. This is the umpteenth cutting from the original from at least 40 years ago. It has flourished and multiplied, unlike the money! (That pot is actually quite large, around 40cm diameter. We won that about 25 years ago at a golf tournament.) The tiny flowers are not quite out yet and are not that striking but always welcome.

That’s it again. Keep warm and enjoy your weekend.