There is a flower bed outside and just across from, our back door. I KNOW it’s a flower bed because over the years I have planted out and sown seeds for a whole variety of species, from campanulas to wildflowers, lupins to forget-me-knots and yet, with the exception of the straggly looking Buddleia which I grew from seed a few years ago, up until this morning, you could have been forgiven to thinking that this bed was nothing but a weed patch. Continue reading
A few years ago I sowed some Sweet William seed and dotted around my garden are three or four mature specimens from this sowing. I get a huge sense of satisfaction watching seeds I sowed turn to seedlings and mature into healthy plants and there is a real joy in seeing flowering plants come back stronger year after year and as a tribute to these beautiful plants I’m sharing this picture of one of the stars of my garden, a glorious, cluster of deep pink Sweet William flowers.
Saturday evening, Mud discovered that one of our Spider Web plants hadn’t been killed off by the cold snap but rather that a veritable army of Vine Weevil larvae had been steadily munching their way through the intricate web of fine roots, leaving only the mature main root and condemning the once majestic plant which has now been consigned to the rubbish heap. There’s something quite sad about being able to lift the remains of what was a large and thriving plant out of it’s planter, with one hand and minimal effort. Continue reading
Back in June, a quick survey of the hanging baskets and tubs dotted around Mudville, resulted in Mud deciding that most of the 6 or 7 year old baskets had well and truly outlived their usefulness and many of the herbs and plants, needed repotting into larger tubs or pots. So we all piled into Annie and headed off to the garden centre on the first of many trips, to replenish the baskets and plants. One area that we really wanted to address, was the corner near the barbeque which is almost entirely in the shade for most of the day, due to the gazebo and so that first trip was mostly dedicated to finding a selection of shade loving plants, with which to dress the covered well. Continue reading
The wait between sowing seeds and seeing the first seedlings emerge, can be a tense one in my experience, especially if you are waiting for seeds with a very long germination period (chillies and parsnips for example). So it’s always something of a relief to spot the first spikes of green beginning to unfurl from beneath the compost. Continue reading
Sunday afternoon saw me so engrossed in potting on some beans, mange tout and flower seedlings, that I wasn’t aware of Little Mudlets’ presence until she commented on the number of bees she had seen and heard, buzzing about the lawn, as she walked towards the vegetable patch. To be honest, the remark didn’t really register until a short while later, as we were walking back to the house, when I realised that, actually, she was correct and that the lawn was indeed awash with bees busily buzzing about their business. Continue reading
Back in March, I was lucky to receive some packets of seeds from the Mudlets as part of my Mothers Day present. One of these packets was the Unwins Cottage Garden Border Perennials Mix which have been hugely successful in terms of the number of seedlings produced from sowing just half of the packet. Unfortunately, flowers aren’t really my thing and beyond the likes of the Lupin and delphinium, I have absolutely no clue as to what is what which means that in respect of planting the young plants into my borders, I have no idea as to height and spread of individual specimens. In addition to the actual planning of my borders, I also want to sell some of the surplus on at the school Summer Fair and would like to label each pot up so that any buyers know what they are getting. Unlabelled plants at plant sales, are a real pet hate of mine. Continue reading
Over on the back fence of the garden, lives a Clematis that the girls gave to Mud for Fathers Day about 7 years or so ago. It has lived in a few different locations but was moved to this particular spot some 5 years or so ago, when it looked like it was on its’ last legs and hadn’t survived the winter. It’s never really done brilliantly beyond that first year but I am not one to give up on plants easily and it did keep throwing out the odd flower or five but never really more than that…… until, that is, this year. For some reason, this year, the Clematis has surpassed itself, looks healthier than ever before (I never trim it back) and has thrown out no less than 16 flowers (approximately 10 cm across when open), at the last count! So I felt it deserved top billing in a post about flowers.
As a child, stickyweed (aka Goosegrass, Clivers, Catchweed and Robin-run-the-hedge to name but a few) was a delight to behold and provided hours of fun for my friends and I, as we each tried to cover our companions with the stuff, inadvertently transporting dozens of the sticky balls (seeds) to areas hitherto uninhabited by stickyweed and no doubt creating infestations of nightmarish proportions for the gardeners of the time. Picking the tiny little balls off our clothes and discarding them wherever we happened to be, was a necessity, if we wanted to prevent an exasperated outburst of “Look at the state of you! What have you been doing?” from our respective mothers. Continue reading