Too much sun after Hoby Open Gardens

18_07_10_9123Have just been away for two weeks following Hoby Open Gardens and it has been hot; very hot for England at 32 centigrade! And we continue to have had no rain of any consequence since the middle of May. 18_07_10_9124We left a garden looking quite good but now it is crisp and dry. Our soil is a sandy loam and tends to dry out quickly but in an English climate this is usually not an issue..18_07_10_9125The main lawn was the walled kitchen garden for a large house next door and the interesting thing now is that wherever there were paths in the original kitchen garden the lawn drys out fastest as you can see in the above.18_06_14_8766The lawn on June 16th before the sun!

So rather than show pictures of dried up plants I thought I would go back to the open garden event.18_06_17_8771After a hectic week getting everything ready the weekend arrived and was a great success. Eleven gardens opened, included Glebe House, and in addition we provided lunches, tombolas, an art exhibition, plant stalls,a white elephant stall (ie a junk stall), a Pimms bar and lets not forget the cream teas. Our garden was one of the venues for cream teas and after Diane had made 250 scones we made almost £900 on the teas alone. Overall the money is still being counted but it looks like we have made almost £7500 which, for a village of just 100 houses, is excellent.  The money is going to do some improvements in our 13th century village church.18_06_22_9093The roses were stunning with Rosa Rambling Rector covering the old apple tree and Rosa Bobby James on the right just coming into flower. Probably one of the best comments was when one of the visitors said she always came into our garden to see the rose ‘Rampant Rector’!

Here are some of the roses in the garden:

18_06_22_9119The main pond had recovered from when it emptied itself  and the water stayed crystal clear.18_06_20_9087and there were no snakes to be seen here either.

18_06_22_9118We only have one hanging basket and luckily it is on automatic watering so it just as good now.

The dahlias were a bit disappointing as the slow spring had held back the flowers. The only flowering dahlias were Dahlia Arabian Night and Dahlia David Howard. Now they are all struggling due to lack of rain.18_06_22_911018_06_22_9109The Delphinium Black Knight and Rosa ‘Iceberg’ made a great show.18_06_22_9113This shrub always provides interest. It is Carpenteria californica with Rosa ‘Irene Watts’ in the foreground. Carpenteria californica is quite a rare plant in English gardens and it needs a sheltered position as it is rather tender.18_06_22_9105June is peak season for poppies which self seed throughout the garden.

We do not have a huge vegetable plot. However, for open gardens even the vegetable plot needs to be weed free.

Elsewhere there were plenty of flowers  to see.

18_06_22_9111As you can see the hedges had not been cut. Actually we ran out of time, however, the current thinking is that it is better to cut box hedging a little later to help prevent blight.

2018 Gardening Hours
Week beginning June 30th Total 2018 to-date Average per week
0 462 18

Holiday week so no gardening.

 

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day – June 2017

June is here and the garden has come to life. This must be one of the easiest GBBD to write with just so many blooms to choose from. But first a few high level photos of the garden taken from our conservatory which is upstairs in our house.17_06_14_6203Looking down the garden Rosa Rambling Rector has taken over the apple tree which was damaged earlier this year in a storm and beyond more roses given the whole garden a perfumed scent. 17_06_14_6206Towards the garden wall Rosa Blush Noisette on the pergola in the corner.17_06_14_6204Across the large pond a multitude of blooms of delphiniums, geraniums etc.17_06_14_6205And looking back towards the pleached lime hedge the underplanting of Rosa Alfred de Dalmas and Lavandula augustifolia ‘Hidcote’ is all coming together.

Looking at some of the blooms in more detail

Rosa Irene Watts is putting on a great display with Carpenteria californica in the background just coming into flower.

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Carpenteria californica

17_06_14_6267Rosa Joseph’s Coat produces these interesting multi coloured blooms.17_06_14_6257Clematis Rhapsody always puts on a good display.17_06_14_6208Recently I talked about the wall across the lawn. It has now been transformed with a hardy pink Diascia noname that is flowering along the wall.17_06_14_6238

Rosa Anne Boleyn is one of may favorite David Austin roses. Is not too tall and has a fantastic scent.17_06_14_6235Potentilla atrosanguinea var. argyrophylla Scarlet Starlit providing bright red stars in the border.

Delphinium Black Knight survived the recent winds!17_06_14_6232Near the Delphinium Black Knight a Rosa Iceberg in flower.17_06_14_6230Knautia macedonica probably a self set but the colour combination works well.17_06_14_6229Hosta Sun & Substance together with Clematis Boulevard Angelique in a lead planter. This planter is on automatic watering. Last year the drain holes blocked and the planter was flooded for some time. Everything was removed and new drain holes made. The original clematis died but the hosta has come back and shows great promise with the new clematis.17_06_14_6228Rosa Bonica as a standard rose, newly planted last year.

Rosa Alfred de Dalmas under planting of the pleached lime hedge.

Iris laevigata Snowdrift and Iris laevigata in the large pond.17_06_14_6224Clematis Madame Julia Correvon another reliable clematis.17_06_14_6222The large pink flowered plant is Geranium palmatum which has a habit of self seeding everywhere but how can you fault it when it looks like this.17_06_14_6221The first dahlia in flower this year, Dahlia David Howard.17_06_14_6220Salvia nemorosa Ostfriesland (East Friesland)17_06_14_6219Rosa Felicite Perpetue along the bottom of the garden.17_06_14_6217Sambucus nigra Lace Lady17_06_14_6216Lysimachia atropurpurea Beaujolais. The problem with plant nurseries is that you always see something that you have not got but feel you have a place for it. This was one such purchase last week!

Geranium Patricia a great mid border plant.

Rosa Ghislaine de Feligonde in full bloom.17_06_14_6211The largest Crambe Cordifolia we have ever grown.17_06_14_6210

Clematis Chelsea and newly planted Rosa Pink Gruss an Aachen.

Viola cornuta horned pansy.

Clematis noname…………..I must look through all my files!17_06_03_5905The magic of some clematis does not die when the flowers are over. Gold seed heads remain.17_06_03_5904More Allium Christophii17_06_03_5902Tradescantia Innocence, what more is there to like!

Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day is hosted on the 15th of each month by Carol at May Dreams Gardens. Visit her blog to see what is blooming in gardens around the world.

Gardening Hours
Week beginning June 3rd Total since June 19th 2016 Average per week
49 963 19

End of the Month View – October 2016

16_10_26_3589It is quite amazing how little has changed over the last 9 weeks since the EoMV for August. The shadows are getting longer and we move our clocks one hour back this week end with the end of summer time so the evening really will get dark quickly. We have had no frost yet so all of the more tender plants continue to shine. Actually there are more dahlias in flower now.16_10_26_3596The Dahlia Twyning’s After Eight has produced so many flowers despite a lack of dead heading (I had assumed that any day now the tubers would be going into store for the winter so deadheading would not be worth doing!).16_10_26_3603Similarly Dahlia Bishop Of Llandaff and Dahlia Bishop of Auckland16_10_26_3608Bishop of Auckland is a lovely dahlia. It has velvety, crimson, single flowers on near-black stems, in contrast with dark green-red leaves. As the flowers age the edge of the petals have an almost incandescent blue tinge.16_10_26_360516_10_26_3591Dahlia David Howard also continues to perform.16_10_26_3604Looking back towards our house along the south west facing border. In places plants are looking dry and finished but the sheer number of flowers is incredible.16_10_26_3595From the same spot looking to the south west16_10_26_3606A sign of the days moving towards winter when Cosmos Purity gets too large and falls over but it is still flowering.16_10_26_3599There are seed heads everywhere. Here the seed head from an Agapanthus.16_10_26_3602And here the dried up remains of Miss Wilmott’s Ghost with very nice grasses behind. We grow these from seed but unfortunately did not record what they were!16_10_26_3597A corner of the pergola with Eucomis in the foreground and Euphorbia mellifera  in the background.16_10_26_3592Many roses continue to flower. This is Rosa Mutablis which has now been flowering since last May. Mutablis illustrates the typical China rose trait of darkening with age, instead of fading. Single petals open sulfur yellow, changing through orange to a rich pink and finally crimson. Bright, silky flowers of all these colors will often be on display at the same time, looking as if a group of multi-colored butterflies has settled on the bush. This aspect earned Mutabilis its common name–”The Butterfly Rose”. 08_06_16_2673Rosa Mutablis last May, six months of beautiful flowers.16_10_26_3614Just as I was about to finish this blog there was a spectacular sunset. This photograph is taken from our conservatory (see photograph above) and is looking across the garden towards the west. The old kitchen garden garden wall (1704) can be seen on the right. Originally it would have continues across the picture, to the left, where there is an arch and rose bed.

Gardening Hours
This week Total since June 19th Average per week
32 400 21

End of the Month View – September 2016

16_09_28_3503This is the same view across the garden that I took in August. Actually I am surprised to see that there are now more flowers on show. Looking at some of these stars we have:16_09_28_3504Osteospermum ‘Tresco Purple’ which is new in the garden this year although I have often seen it in Tresco. It has done really well and forms a low bushy plant which is claimed to be hardy. However as with all our osteospermums we take cutting which will remain in the greenhouse till next spring.16_09_29_3529

The seed trays are Anemone Nemerosa Robinsoniana which come in the form of little twigs of root. Planting directly in the garden has not been successful so I plant them in seed trays and plant out in the spring when they start growing. So far this has always worked.

Dahlias Bishop of Landaff and David Howard continue to bloom there hearts away. however, they do need deadheading frequently.

Dragonflies dart around everywhere laying their eggs around the pond.  This one is probably the Southern Hawker Dragonfly.

16_09_28_3527Rudbeckia ‘Herbstone’ makes a huge plant at the back of the border.  The main issue is supporting it from falling onto the other plants.16_09_28_3525Roses are continuing to flower with the very warm weather we have been having. This is Rosa Awakening a climber on the wall.16_09_28_3513Cosmos bipinnatus ‘Purity’ has grown and grown with some plants over six feet high which usually mean they have collapsed onto other plants.16_09_28_3512Apples, apples and more apples. This is a very old tree of unknown stock but they do keep quite well for upto six months. We will pick some for storage soon.16_09_28_3516Salvia ‘Cerro Potosi’ a useful hardy salvia. We cut it back each spring and it grows and grows!16_09_28_3514and at the back is this aster. It is one of the few plants that was in the garden when we moved here in 1994. It is very tall (about six feet) and very reliable but I do not know exactly what variety it is. Could be Aster praealtus any other suggestions?

Some more details views of the border:

Gardening Hours
This week Total since June 19th Average per week
31 282 19

End of Month View – August 2016

16_08_24_3297This is a view across the garden into what was originally a walled kitchen garden to the village rectory. The wall at the back is double skinned and could be heated via a fireplace and a system of brick ducts to transport the heat through the wall.  The flower beds were originally only a couple of feet deep when we moved here in 1994 but has since been increased up to 12 feet deep. The pergola on the right is made from green oak and replaced one that was made from scaffolding planks and poles.  The lawn, viewed from above forms a large half circle.

I shall use my “End of Month View” to look at this view and how it develops through the year. The following sequence of photos look at the borders in more detail from left to right.16_08_24_3298The star here is the Rudbeckia ‘Berlin’ with the Osteospermum ‘Tresco Purple’ and the Molinia caerulea grass behind. At this time of year much of this border is looking either green or brown. In the future we intend to get more gems of colour such as the Rudbeckia into the planting schemes16_08_24_3300With the Molinia on the left there is a bank of dahlias,  ‘Bishop of Llandaff’, ‘Fairfield Frost’ & ‘Nuit D’Ete’ together with Cosmos bipinnatus ‘Purity’. I often use dahlias to fill gaps in the late summer borders.16_08_24_3299The Rudbeckia ‘Herbstone’ at the back provides good colour with Eryngium giganteum ‘Miss Willmott’s ghost’ providing structural interest. However the large leaves of Crambe Cordifolia in the centre has become an issue for this border. In late May the flowers can be great (although this year they failed completely) but for much of the year it only provides a mass of leaves. I think it will be gone next year!16_08_24_3302As you can see I designed and built the pond in 2010. We have been delighted with the pond but have struggled with the planting in front. Currently we have ground cover Rosa ‘Snow Carpet’ underplanted with Clematis ‘Chelsea’ neither has done that well which could be because it is a very dry spot. 16_08_24_3304This border on the right has done well this year. The large Nepeta is ‘Six Hills Giant’ with dahlias ‘David Howard’ and ‘Twyning’s After Eight’. In the centre is an interesting Salvia involocruta bethellii. This salvia is cut back in the winter but so far has survived our winters and grows to around 6 feet. We normally mulch the base in winter with dry material to protect it from the frost.

16_08_24_3271

Salvia involocruta bethellii