greentapestry : August 2020

Monday 31 August 2020

IAVOM ~ Hanging On In There

It's Monday - the last bank holiday of the year and time for 'In A Vase On Monday'. As I was in danger of being edged out of my usual photographic perch by a power washer it was a case of the quickest of snips this morning.

Both snips are from plants that have been badly treated, one by human hand and the other by the elements :

  • Rosa 'Boscabel' - this was a new purchase from David Austin in the autumn of 2018. She came in bare root from and was planted in a pot for convenience. This was supposed to be short term and much to my shame she is still in the pot. Even worse than that she had been pushed almost out of sight but still has managed to hold on and flower. I have promised her better. She is a beautiful soft coral pink and has a most pleasant scent.
  • Tucked in behind her is a snip of the half-hardy grass 'Panicum capillare 'Sparkling Fountain'. This was grown from seed sown in the greenhouse on 5th March. It certainly more than lives up to its name especially on sunny days. This snip was taken from a plant that was looking most splendid in a pot with companions, until it was knocked sideways in the first of this month's two named storms. Fortunately it has perked up and still lives to tell the tale. It didn't over winter this year so maybe another sowing will be in order next spring. 
A BIG thanks as always to host Cathy who blogs over at 'Rambling In The Garden'. Time soon for lunch and the plan then is to have a peaceful afternoon out in the garden before finally placing my bulb order tonight. No bank holiday traffic jams for us especially this year!

Monday 24 August 2020

IAVOM ~ The Calm Before The Storm

It has been a beautiful late summer's day here with blue skies, sunshine and the most perfect temperature. The green bin has been filled almost to the brim ready for collection in the morning and this afternoon's trip to the allotment resulted in patty pan squashes, French beans, beetroot and a ruck of apples coming back home with us. The apple picking session was deemed an urgent task in view of the named storm that is heading our way tomorrow bringing heavy rain, thunder and gale force winds in its wake. Still it was lovely to breath in summer today. 

In my 'In A Vase On Monday' this week are :

  • A couple of roses. The larger flower of the two is the rose my sister had named after my mother namely 'Luisa's Daughter"and then sent to me as a birthday present. I've picked her flowers for vases before and they have always been a creamy deepening into a pale soft yellow colour. This year though odd things have happened and she is sending out some very pink buds which are opening to a pale pink flower. Most peculiar. The other deeper pink rose is an emerging bud from 'Evelyn', a new rose purchase this year from Davis Austin. 'Evelyn' has a most intense perfume and reminds me of the roses we picked as children to make rose perfume with. Somehow the promise of rose perfume never lived up to the expectation and the liquid from many a jar laced with decayed petals was tossed aside before winter. 

Update - since posting I've realised that the second rose is 'Gertrude Jekyll' and not 'Evelyn'.
  • Orlaya grandilora - the flowers of this annual come from the batch I sowed in May. This is the first year that I have grown these and I will be sowing another batch in the next week or so for an earlier flowering next year.
  • Some sweet peas which are still producing after their late off the starting block days. I hope that their respective wigwams are up to a bit of buffeting from the wind tomorrow.
  • A couple of flowers from cosmos 'Pink Lemonade' which I don't think that I will grow again. I only planted five of the plants and all have produced different sizes and colours of flower with only one looking anything like the flower pictured in the seed catalogue! An annual with a lot of hype to it's name or am I being harsh?
  • A sprig of the perennial thalictrum delavayi var. decorum. I love it's soft colour and airy ways.
  • Finally a few bits of the perennial eurybia divaricata also known as the white wood aster. It flowers in late summer and is a shade lover. 
My vase this week is a little milk jug, origin lost in time but probably bought from a local charity shop.

With many thanks as always to Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' for the inspiration for sharing our vases on Mondays. Do have a peek there if you haven't already and be prepared to be dazzled and delighted by a wealth of flowers laced with generously shared knowledge and tips.

Saturday 22 August 2020

August Musings


"There is no question of me trying to reform my reaction to the major smell that starts at the end of August to dominate the house in autumn - apples.

I was sitting down at my desk on a rather dull day when this strong mouth-watering perfume filled the room. I had no flowers on my desk. I turned my head and remembered I had bought a big bag of Discovery apples and piled them in a bowl on the window-sill, for their brightness as much as anything...... Another interesting smell that lingers in the house for some time comes from the making of crab apple jelly. It has a faint clovey tang to it. 

The elderberry with its irony smell had also succeeded to the fragrant flower. The bullaces, the sharp wild plums are brightening some hedges with their orange-red where the traveller's joy has become the old man's beard, a soft curly silver beard when the flowers have just gone over into seed.

So August is the beginning of the gathering season as well as the harvesting of cultivated crops. There are lighter sweeter smells as well from two plants that will have a resurgence now if you pick sedulously earlier on - sweet peas and wild strawberries. Mingled with these are the stringent smells of nasturtiums, tomatoes, bonfires, new feverfew leaves, poppy stalks. How can anyone, how can I think of August as a dull month?"

Photo - some of my 'Katy' apple crop 2017. 

Monday 17 August 2020

IAVOM ~ Desert Sands

The run of very hot, sunny and humid weather has come to an abrupt end with some very heavy rain last night which snapped off some dahlia flowers and has knocked an ornamental grass for six. Fortunately thinking that it might be wet today I had picked most of my in 'A Vase On Monday' contents yesterday evening. In the vase this week are :

  • More of the lovely rudbeckia hirta 'Sahara' flowers which are now becoming a firm favourite. I have them growing in the garden this year rather than at the allotment which has worked out well. They were sown in late winter in a heated propagator. I passed some surplus plants to a friend who is equally enamoured so next year I will be growing for the both of us. I have already purchased seed for next year having read that one of the major seed companies has indicated that there may be shortages with seed supplies next spring! 
  • A new to me hardy perennial in the shape of achillea millefolium 'Salmon Beauty'. The blooms are now fading. This is one of my few plant purchases of 2020 and was bought from the nursery at Arley Hall. We made a trip there last month and struck gold. We had the double herbaceous border there to ourselves for at least ten minutes. I will have to write a post about this visit soon before it becomes a distant memory. 
  • Finally some foliage - cuttings a of a dark leaved physocarpus probably 'Diablo'. Most of them decided to turn their backs to the camera so you are seeing the green reverse of the leaves.

Thanks as always to our lovely hostess Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' who is also showcasing another delightful rudbeckia in her vase today.

I started this post off in the new Blogger format but when I was unable to see a preview I once again reverted to the familiar format. However I think that this ceases to become useable in the next few days a prospect that I'm not looking forward to. I predict stamping of feet and curses ahead. 

Monday 3 August 2020

IAVOM ~ Summer Breeze

In today's 'In A Monday Vase' are mainly annuals grown from seed this spring or in once case in late summer 2019 although the odd perennial has sneaked in. The contents are as follows :
  • Rudbeckia hirta 'Sahara' - I grew these for the first time in 2018 and am now would not be without. They were started off in a heated propagator and without label to hand I imagine that they were probably sown in the last week of February. They produce flowers in different soft colours but my favourites are those in this vase.
  • Zinnia - my zinnias have not fared well this year and there is only just the one of them in this vase. I think that is 'Queen Red Lime'. I don't know what it is about zinnias but I have the same ambivalent feelings for them as I do for tulips i.e. love the flowers but not the foliage. Maybe both have antannae and pick up on my feelings as I usually struggle with both.
  • Cosmos - 'Pink Lemonade' - grown from seed sown in April. This cosmos is a relative newcomer and this is a first time for me. The jury is still out on this one. One of the plants is a cuckoo in the nest and I am more taken with that one. You can see it in the photo below. I might save seeds from that and see what transpires with them net year.
  • Ammi visnaga 'Green Mist' - also grown from seed which was sown last September and then overwintered in a cold greenhouse. I love both the flowers and feathery foliage of these. I will sow these again next month along with some other annuals. Unfortunately once planted some of my plants were felled by a mysterious ailment so I hope that lightening doesn't strike twice next year. 
  • Finally a bit of yellow frothiness in the shape of alchemilla mollis - a stalwart and almost trouble free perennial. Well it does self seed everywhere but surely that is my fault for not cutting the old flower heads off quickly enough.
Thanks as always to Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' for encouraging us to share our vases each and every Monday which provides me and no doubt other bloggers with much inspiration when I vase hop. I'm hoping that this morning's early and unexpected rain will give rise to a sunny afternoon so that I can head out into the garden soon. The signs at the moment are encouraging. I see some blue sky appearing. Enjoy your Monday!