greentapestry : August 2022

Saturday 27 August 2022

Musing ~ An August Midnight

 Spotted out in the streets of Grange-over-Sands, Cumbria.

Please click on the photo if it is a struggle to see the text.

Monday 22 August 2022

IAVOM - 'Turning Japanese'


This week's vase chose itself before the flowers were even picked. It was bought just over five years ago when I met up with one of many nieces. She had just obtained her degree result and I treated her to lunch in Liverpool to celebrate her success. Afterwards we pottered about calling into various shops including a small arts and crafts centre where she persuaded me to buy this vase. A few days ago my niece and her partner finally set off on a grand adventure that was originally planned to commence in the spring of 2020 when the pandemic abruptly halted many people's plans and dreams. They have finally set off to spend a year working in Japan and no doubt fitting in some travel too. I shall miss her occasional visits, the odd day out together and her lively company. Over the last year she ventured into allotment gardening and would regularly ask for advice and reassurance. More recently she was sending me impressive photos of her crops and has come to the conclusion that when she returns that buying a house with a garden will be a priority. I'm really looking forward to keeping up with her travels and experiences and she has promised photos of horticultural interest especially at cherry blossom time.

In this Monday's vase are :

  • A head of the lovely 'Lady Emma Hamilton' rose which has the most delicious scent, attractive flowers and rather lovely newly emerging leaves.
  • Larkspur 'Misty Lavender' grown from seed. I finally hit the jackpot this year when it came to germination having a surplus to my requirements seedlings. They have been neighbours to cosmos which most conveniently props them up. I shall have to remember this next year. 
  • Some achillea 'Summer Berries' - this perennial was again grown from seed sown in September 2020. 
  • Didiscus caeruleus - also known as the 'Blue Lace' flower. This is half hardy annual and was grown from seed by a friend and given to me when we swapped some seedlings. I like the flowers but am not really sure about the foliage.
  • Phlox which I thought was 'Cherry Caramel' although I have serious doubts as to their identity the cherry eyes are conspicous by their absence. This is another half hardy annual which I sowed in the greenhouse in March. It was a second sowing as the first didn't germinate and I think that I might have at that point accidentally selected a packet of phlox paniculata 'Isabellina', which was lurking in close proximity in my seed box. Never matter as I still like them just as much.
  • Some grassy foliage interest from panicum capillare 'Sparkling Fountain' which was sown in spring from seeds collected from last year's plants. I've planted them in pots with companions.

  • So nearly not appearing in any vase this year is a stem of the half hardy annual molluccella laevis commonly known as 'Bells of Ireland'. I have grown these before but not for many years. They were still in a seed tray when I tucked them at the back of the cold frame some time ago and then forgot about them! Two plants managed to flower despite my neglect - the actual flowers are the tiny pinky white whorls you can see in the close up photo above. I intend to do better next year as they are an excellent foliage plant and also dry well.
One of those promised photos from Japan arrived early this morning - a great start to the day. Thanks always to Cathy over at 'Rambling In The Garden' for her stalwart hosting. Looking forward as the day unfolds to seeing what is in other vases on this so far sunny although rain in the forecast Monday.

Monday 8 August 2022

IAVOM - 'Some Like It Hot'

The thought of another spell of hot weather stretching ahead isn't doing much for me. Despite having some Mediterranean genes heat and I are not compatible companions. Gardening tasks will be accomplished early in the morning or in the evening, a supply of cool drinks has been stockpiled and there is some much anticipated reading to keep me occupied as well as several less anticipated neglected housework tasks. Although I don't enjoy the heat I am drawn to some of the hot colours that are coming into prominence now so in my vase this week are :

  • Rudbeckia 'Sahara' - which is now a regular stalwart and in my must haves to sow back in the spring. They come in most attractive shades although there are never quite enough of my favourite shade which is a soft rosy red colour. 
  • Helenium 'Sahin's Early Riser' - a division of this perennial was kindly given to me by the owner of a holiday cottage that we stayed in for a holiday in 2009. I had admired it in the garden and had asked her the name. To be given a plant to be taken home was a welcome surprise as we handed the keys in on departure and a permanent reminder of that holiday. It's an easy going perennial and this year has really benefited from me remembering to give it the 'Chelsea Chop'. Along with the astrantias it was the plant that flagged the most in last month's heatwave. I was all set to revive it with the watering can when even better we had a decent amount of rain which revived it almost overnight. We've been fortunate enough to have more rain than some part of the country this summer and it has had a good drenching within the last few days. Still I will keep a close eye on it this week to watch out for any signs of distress.
  • Dahlias - I included a couple of stems of dahlias namely 'Waltzing Matilda' and ' Copperboy'. I've not grown either before and have enjoyed seeing them come into flower. 'Waltzing Matilda' more than lives up to her name with twirling petals and has a fascinating habit of closing up for the night.
  • Some cooling down from the pale creamy yellow flowers of the perennial anthemis 'E.C. Buxton', which started life as a small cutting coming home with me from a propagation course at a local nursery.
Thank you to Cathy who blogs at 'Rambling In The Garden' for hosting come heatwaves or hail. I've just remembered that I must water a new plant that I risked getting in the ground last week so will make tracks. What are your hints and tips for keeping cool?