My body can’t quite keep up with my mind these days – my mind still believes ‘all is possible’. Mostly my body is moving a little stiffly two steps behind. So, it took determination to heave myself away from book and warm fire out into the garden this afternoon.
The two young boys and their grey tabby friend were delighted.
Showing off by climbing trees and dotting about within seconds of me putting my toe out the door. As if to say, ‘Remember, last Saturday you said you were going to do one loving thing for your garden each day? Hah!’ (They said)!
I must say, after being in this garden for 11 years, it does seem to me like a proper place now. Hornbeam hedges and yew hedges planted – and my my four Prunus ‘Tai-Haku’ peeping around corners and over hedges everywhere at this time of year.
‘One. Prunus ‘Tai-Haku’. They are the most expensive thing I have planted in this garden (planted 2013). I ordered them from a nursery called ‘Botaniques du Val Douve’. They nearly weren’t here at all. I was inexperienced in the ways of the French businessman at that stage and impatiently rang up to find out where they were when they were just a little late (remember that, for me, at 190€, they represented a big outlay!). I was told that if I was going to be in that kind of hurry, I could go somewhere else.
Every time I look at them now, I’m glad I crawled (metaphorically) on my belly to that bad-tempered nurseryman. What I love most about them – apart from the March/April flowers (this is the famed ‘Great White Cherry’) is they way they peep at me over the hedge in the Hornbeam Gardens.-
Two. Nerine bowdenii. I really like cheap things from Aldi and Lidl – however this washed out nerine was a disappointment. I need to buy a good named one to get the hot pink I wanted. But this is pretty in a delicate, spidery way.
Three. Penesetum ‘Red Head’. I haven’t got too many of these Pennesetum alopecuroides cvs, but I have got ‘Hameln’ and this. Couldn’t be without it now. They bring a whole lot of pleasure to late summer and autumn borders … and actually, having wanted it for ages, the newer arrival, ‘Hameln’, isn’t as good. But perhaps this is just because it takes plants forever to settle on this heavy clay.
Four. Peacock orchid/lily, alias Gladiolus mureliae (syn. Acanditherus bicolor). When your loved one develops an obsession, unfortunately you have to pander to it. This is one of the BV’s. It has taken them until now to start flowering, but I’ve had a vase of a few slender stems on the kitchen table for a few weeks now, and it’s wonderful to watch a new flower unfolding each day.
Five. The blue pergola holding the vines up on the Vine Terrace definitely needs repainting Nick! Let’s pray for a mild, sunny Christmas.
Six. Melianthus major. Originally I purchased two – perhaps 7 years ago now – for the pots on the Mirror Garden.
I had a fantasy of the pots at Hidcote in my head (I’m not called ‘Garden Dreaming’ for nothing – sometimes there’s more dreaming than doing!). They didn’t do at all – too hot and dry, I imagine. So this remaining specimen has been hauled around and is now sitting in a pot outside the greenhouse. But it never looks happy. I want to find a nice warm place in the ground for it and mulch it well in winter to see if I can pull it through.
That’s it – I promise the garden (and the boys) that I will emerge from my cocoon and plant tulips this week!
Meanwhile – don’t forget to go over to Jim Stephen’s blog, Garden Ruminations and follow the links to all the other SoS gardens. And, most importantly, may your garden bring you much autumn joy until we meet again!