Monday 19 February 2024

IAVOM ~ Hellebore Days


A trio of hellebores in today's 'In A Vase On Monday' - the names are lost in the mists of time apart from the one with the pink edging on the flower which is Helleborus Gold Collection 'Ice n' Roses' - Picotee'. The arum leaf which you can just about glimpse at the back is from a seedling of arum italicum, which is now self seeding to nuisance proportions. My fault for once commenting to a friend that it had never seeded whilst hers had. Most of the seedlings are being extricated when I spot them but this one escaped. It is different from the parent and I like the markings. 

The vase is also one of a trio which came home with me last summer after a garden visit.

Thanks as always to the lovely Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' for her hosting this weekly meme which is must appreciated. A rare completely dry day so I have been busy pruning and filling the garden waste bin up in readiness for the first grand collection after the winter respite. Then the filling game will start again with only two weeks to the next collection. Looking forward to seeing what is on other vases this week.

Monday 12 February 2024

IAVOM ~ Just A Few Drops

Dropping into this week's 'In A Vase On Monday' post are a few of my special snowdrops. I wish I knew how to insert text and arrows for identification purposes but such wizardry is beyond me so I will rely on the good old left to right method :

  • Galanthus 'Fieldgate Superb' with a distinctive X marking.  There are a number of 'Fieldgate' snowdrops which all arrived as chance seedlings in the garden of the late Colin Mason who lived in Kenilworth. You can read more about them here. I have five 'Fieldgate' varieties and there is definitely room for more.
  • 'Galanthus 'Wendy's Gold,' feeling shy on a dull day and refusing to open for the camera, perhaps because she is in a shadier border than the other snowdrops I picked. Her yellow ovary does shine out though. Like most yellow snowdrops she seems to clump up agonisingly slowly.
  • Galanthus 'Trimmer' - lurking at the back and third from left. This one hasn't made into the garden yet but grows in a pot, which is overwintering in the greenhouse.
  • Galanthus 'Viridapice' - this is the big boy of the group. Although the label has gone missing I'm reasonably sure of the identity. 
  • Galanthus 'Hans Guck In De Luft' (which translates as Johnny-Head-In-Air) with such soulful eyes. This is a fairly new arrival has still to make it from pot culture into the garden. The one original bulb has multiplied quickly. I will be planting one potful out this week and have three more pots waiting in the wings. There will soon be spares to share with friends.
  • Galanthus 'Lost Label' - hiding behind young 'Hans' is a green tipped unknown variety. I will have to send a photo to my snowdrop friends to see if they know what it might be. Loosing labels doesn't upset me as much as it used to as the flower gives me exactly the same pleasure with or without a name. Still it's nice to know what's what.
  • Galanthus 'Sutton Courtenay' - this one has an unmistakeable yellowish lime green ovary and the markings are the same colour.
  • Last but not least is the distinctive 'Trumps' which I included in a vase some three weeks ago and which is still going strong. I must divide what is now a large clump.
Thanks to Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' for her brilliant hosting each and every Monday. This week her post is featuring the most gorgeous hellebore which I simply must track down! The recent wet weather has not treated the snowdrops or other early flowers such as crocus well. However today the sun has been out on and off with patches of blue sky and spring seems to be that bit nearer. 

Monday 29 January 2024

IAVOM ~ 'Reeling In The Years'

 It's Monday again and I'm joining in with the 'In A Vase On Monday' meme which invites bloggers to share their flowers in a vase or alternative container. A great way to kick-start the new week! A quick pick and plonk from me late yesterday afternoon. In my vase are :

  • Iris reticulata - I'm not sure what variety but possibly 'Clairette'. They have popped up over the last week in a pot set aside as I wasn't sure what was in it. No signs of any other occupants so far though.
  • Helleborus x hybridus (Ashwood Evolution Group) Yellow Double' - this is a recent arrival and was a gift from himself as I celebrated one of those big birthdays that ends in a 0 last week. It's a beauty and now I need to find the perfect spot for it.
I have used a favourite vase which was hand painted by my mum. I  can't make my mind up whether the markings are suns or stars. On the subject of the solar system just before darkness fell last night we headed to catch the 'Gaia' exhibition at a local museum, which is based on the site of a former medieval monastery. This art installation is touring the world and gives us an opportunity to see what our planet looks like from the moon. 

Measuring seven metres in diameter and created from 120dpi detailed NASA imagery of the Earth’s surface, 'Gaia' gives us the opportunity to see our planet, floating in three dimensions. In Greek mythology Gaia is the personification of the Earth, hence the name of the installation. We thought that our local museum was perhaps to small to get the best experience of 'Gaia' but imagine that it will look fantastic suspended in Tewkesbury Abbey, where it will be heading off to next week. Do have a look here to find out more and to see whether 'Gaia' might be heading in your direction in the future.

Thanks to Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' for her stellar hosting each and every week. Although it's raining heavily outside at the moment I'm hoping to spend some time in my greenhouse  this week well wrapped up in the heated gilet that my sister has kindly bought for me in deference to my senior years. I hope that you're able to venture out into the garden this week.

Monday 22 January 2024

IAVOM ~ 'Blowin' In The Wind'

The residents of today's vase were vigorously swirling about in the wind as I took this photo. Last week's snow and ice turned back to wet and windy yesterday with the arrival of storm 'Isha', which caused some considerable havoc across the country especially in Scotland. Today the sun is out and although the wind is brisk it's certainly abated. In my vase are :

  • Stems of cornus sanguinea 'Anny's Winter Orange'.
  • Stems of pittisporum' Silver Ball'.
  • Flowers from one of my favourite snowdrops with the unfortunate name of 'Trumps'. I think that the snowdrop preceded the politician or certainly his arrival on the world's political stage. It has distinct green markings on the outside, flowers early and has clumped up well in the garden.

Thanks to Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' for inviting us to share our vases little and large, whatever the weather or the season. Here another named winter storm is waiting in the wings for tomorrow but the weather gods are are promising to be more kind at the weekend. I'm looking forward to it! 

Monday 8 January 2024

IAVOM ~ 'Just Picked and Plonked'

 In anticipation of a busy weekend and a weather forecast for frost I ventured out on Friday to snip some bits for this week's vase. It was decidedly cool, grey and extremely soggy so it turned out to be a quick and rather lopsided pick and plonk. I just wanted to get back indoors pronto! In my vase are :

  • A sprig of viburnum tinus - I think that it's 'Eve Price'. We tried to remove this evergreen shrub a few years ago. Although the winter flowers are welcome the foliage was always attacked by the viburnum beetle which leaves a trail of unattractive lacy holes in its wake. We must have left a portion still in the ground which has taken off again. Further surgery is required. 
  • A rather battered flower from anemone coronaria 'Mr Fokker' which I have never seen flower at this time of the year before now. It's a low growing tuberous perennial which usually flowers in the spring through to early summer and has the deepest most vivid of blue flowers .

  • Last but not least the only dry bloom in the house is chrysanthemum 'Tula Green'. This has been in the shelter of the greenhouse. I've grown it before and lost it but was gifted a couple of cuttings from a friend this autumn and one of the plants has recently come into flower.
Thanks as always to Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' for hosting. Looking outside this morning I saw that the predicted frost had not materialised but it's bitterly cold out there, so more of a day for inside activities including some vase hopping later. Wishing everyone a good week and happy gardening whether of the armchair sort or real life variety.

Monday 1 January 2024

IAVOM ~ Just In Time

I'm cheating this week with my 'In A Vase on Monday' contribution so I hope that I'm forgiven. Back in November I purchased a couple of seasonal bulbs from a certain German supermarket - that little and often one. Both were hippeastrum bulbs to give them their proper name although I still think of them as amaryllis. One was in a box with bowl and planting medium included, whilst the other was a ready made job in a glass container complete with seasonal decorations. It was obviously more expensive than the boxed version but then I can use the container again as well as some of the decorations so I decided to treat myself. It has been exciting to inspect the bulb daily for signs of growth and after a tantalising wait to see the first flower open a couple of days before Christmas. There was no indication of what the colour of the flower was when I bought the bulb so that was part of the excitement,

Thanks as always to Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' for her wonderful hosting skills. Wishing all my blogging friends a most peaceful and joyous New Year and happy gardening in the twelve months of the year to come! 🌱

Monday 25 December 2023

IAVOM ~ Season's Greetings!


This week's little Monday vase celebrates Christmas as well as being a nod to the recent winter solstice. As we turn to the light there will be more and more flowers to pick so certainly a time to rejoice. In my vase are :

  • Cornus or dogwood 'Anny's Winter Orange' stems.
  • A couple of nameless violas.
  • A sprig or two of winter flowering jasmine whose Latin name eludes me just now.
  • A flower of the appropriately named galanthus or snowdrop 'Three Ships' - the flowers of which have certainly sailed in well on time this year.
The vase was hand painted by mum.

A big thank you as always to the lovely Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden', who entertains us each and every Monday, whatever the season and on special days too. Wishing Cathy and all my blogging friends a most Merry Christmas and happy gardening in the new year ❄️ πŸ€ΆπŸŽ„πŸŒ±❤️

Monday 18 December 2023

IAVOM ~ In The Pink

A duo of pink chrysanthemums on this week's 'In A Vase On Monday'. Both chrysanthemums are currently in the greenhouse is only heated when the overnight temperatures fall to minus figures. I've not grown either before. They are :
  •  'Avignon Pink' whose days with me are numbered. It is the lighter single bloom and looked a much warmer shade of pink in the catalogue. If it survives the winter and re-sprouts next year I will be looking out for a good home for it.
  • 'Tula Purple' - the jury is still out on this one. It's not as purple as I hoped but it may get a more prolonged stay than it's companion.

Meanwhile in the greenhouse another of the Tula series is about to open. My last pickings of chrysanthemum 'Spider Bronze' for a vase on the 27th November, are heading in the direction of the green garden waste bin today. In their floppy gone over state they have paled to a much softer shade of orange and still look most pleasing to the eye. I'm definitely impressed by the staying power of these flowers and after two years of growing 'Spider Bronze' it's a definite keeper.

As always thanks to Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' for hosting. No gardening for me today although I spent some productive time in the garden yesterday on what was a rare mild dry day. I finally planted my tulips in pots with himself's assistance, watered my cuttings and seedlings in the greenhouse, did some pruning and mulched the rapidly emerging snowdrops. Cutting off the old hellebore leaves is the next task on the list. Meanwhile it's a sorry state of affairs as it's housework that takes priority today but I will make sure that there is time for a coffee break or two and some vase perusing along the way.

Thursday 7 December 2023

A Week OF Flowers ~ Day 7

The last of my posts for Cathy's cheering meme 'A Week Of Flowers'. How the week has flown and here it has been a most cold one with heavy frosts and some snow at the weekend, so I'm finishing with some late bright August sunshine. The flowers are those of the hardy perennial helenium 'Sahin's Early Flowerer', which is in flower from July and lasts for a good while before coming to a standstill sometime in October. It's easy going, usually untroubled by pests and it is a magnet for pollinators. My plant grows in one of the sunnier spots in the garden where the soil is very heavy.  The plant usually gets the 'Chelsea Chop' treatment in May. I have grown it since 2009 when I first came across it in a holiday cottage where we were spending a week. The flowers were in a vase on the windowsill which you can see below.

I didn't know what the flower was so when I had the chance to ask the cottage owner I did and she told me more about the plant and showed it to me growing in the garden. When we left to return home she very kindly presented me with a small clump as a gift so it's a lovely memento of that week.

The construction is himself's creation. He had always been fascinated by the shape of pig arks and wanted to build something in that style! It's a bit of a man shed and gym but there is room for a few gardening odds and ends. It's where the last of my bulbs are waiting for me to plant them so hopefully warmer days will come soon. 

A big thanks to Cathy over at 'Words and Herbs' who came up with the inspiring idea of sharing photos of the flowers that have bought us happiness, at a time of year where there is not much in flower. Yesterday  I noticed that the very first of my beloved snowdrops are in flower so the year has certainly come round full circle. 

Wednesday 6 December 2023

A Week OF Flowers ~ Day 6

 Today I'm going back to my favourite month of May for Cathy's 'A Week Of Flowers' with two trees, the flowers of which take my breath away every spring. Above are flowers from Malus 'Red Sentinel' whilst below are flowers from my Conference pear tree.

The two grow side by side in my garden and both were covered in a profusion of blossom. Sadly the pear produced very little in the way of fruit this year in complete contrast to last year. However the weather in spring and summer of the respective years was so different. I have a feeling that we had more than our share of rain this spring followed by some late frost so not an ideal scenario for fruit to set. I wonder what next year will bring? The crab apple on the other hand was smothered with its bright red berries up to recently. I must look later to see if there are any still hanging on to the tree. Thanks to Cathy for hosting    'A Week Of Flowers' over at her lovely blog 'Words and Herbs'.