A visit to the allotment this weekend yielded treasures including the first flowerings of sweet peas, anemones and cornflowers. There were not enough sweet peas to cut for a vase but I was able to pick a couple of anemone coronaria 'Sylphide' and a couple of cornflower 'Black Ball' blooms for today's vase.
It is thanks to Sarah over at 'Homeslip' that I planted corms of 'Sylphide' earlier this spring. I had been smitten since seeing them on her blog. I'm not sure why I have never planted anemone coronaria before and feel that I've been missing out out for years. Working out which way to plant the somewhat wrinkled claw shaped corms was most intriguing. I started them off in pots on the heated sand bench in the greenhouse sometime in March. They were then hardened off before being planting out in a raised bed at the allotment where I grow sweet peas and other flowers. That planting out took place about three weeks ago yet the flowers took me by surprise. They seemed to just suddenly appear out of nowhere. In another raised bed anemone coronaria 'The Bride' is showing colour and hopefully the blue 'Mr Fokker' will follow soon. I'm delighted with 'Sylphide' so many thanks for the introduction Sarah.
The cornflowers were sown on 17th March with 'Black Ball' opening ahead of 'Blue Ball' although the latter are showing colour. Also in the vase are some stems of briza maxima which were foraged from the allotment site. They grow in profusion in front of the community hut. I've sown and planted some at home too but they are not as advanced. I'm not sure whether this is a wise move seeing how prolifically they self seed ..... time will tell.
Joining the allotment pickings are a single stem of rosa' Burgundy Ice', some astrantia 'Gill Richardson' and astrantia 'Hadspen Blood'. 'Gill Richardson' is my favourite deep red astrantia producing large and sturdy flowers.
Also in the vase some fluffy pink persicaria bistorta 'Superba', which left just enough room to slip in stems of the shrub physocarpus opulifolius, variety uncertain but probably 'Diablo'. The plan is to fish the latter out later to try and strike cuttings.
I was also delighted to come home with the first strawberries of the season but they didn't last long enough to be included in any photos.
Although I have acquired a record three new 'vases' in the last week, I'm using an old favourite given to me by my mother after a cupboard clearing session. The new additions came about from a visit to Grange-over-Sands in Cumbria. They include what must be a candidate for the world's heaviest empty teapot. No doubt you will meet them all soon.
I see that our hostess Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' is feeling rosy today. Do pay her a visit.