Saturday, 6 March 2010

Dreary Saturday

I’ve been busy in the garden over the past couple of days… Ok, not so busy but I do feel I've at least got started...

Early in the week I sowed some seeds; Tomato, Cosmos, Sweet Pea and Cupid's Dart... I over wintered some Sweet Peas but they do not look their best, so much for an early show!

Anemone is taking its time developing its flower

Thursday I chopped back the Buddleja and Roses – hard! The Buddleja really needed a serious chop so I hacked away at it with a nice sharp saw… I had planned to completely remove it, but we’ll see, I may leave that job for next year. I wanted to wait for a new seedling to pop up in the garden before I got rid of it, and I’m almost 100% certain I have a baby in the pot where the Irises are flowering.

More Irises have opened, spy the Buddleja seedling in the background

Crocus Tommansinianus

Dicentra Spectabilis is coming up, I was worried I’d killed it – phew! I want to move it (and my Dicentra 'Alba'), must do it soon!

Friday Pete and I got rid of an unknown Laurel and a Portuguese Laurel… I hate getting rid of plants, especially shrubs, but I despise Laurel with a passion but it’s growing in a goblet shape and seems redundant…

The Portuguese Laurel was planted in totally the wrong place, heaven knows why they planted a Cotoneaster, Portuguese Laurel and x Laurel within 3m of each other… I don’t mind it, it’s quite pretty but grows much too large for our garden.

So I need to decide what I’ll put in their place… Pete suggested rock garden because it’s a slope… But it’s too shady for conventional alpine planting, so I was thinking forcing rocks into the mud forming a type of dry stone wall to allow crevices and then getting aubrieta, fleabane and such to grow in the cracks also providing homes for insects/arachnids,

I’ve considered putting a flowering Quince in, but feel the site may not quite be sunny enough for it. Any suggestions?
Perhaps a winter flowering honeysuckle or Witch Hazel, the only problem with that is I would never get to smell the perfume, it isn’t an area of the garden I frequent in the winter, but the flowers should at least bring some colour.

Hybrid Bluebells are coming up… I cut the flowers each year so they don’t hybridise with my English Bluebells… They make lovely cut flowers, the perfume is very strong!

I’m undecided whether to get rid of them…

They seem more than happy to grow anywhere!

Siberian Bugloss (Brunnera marophyllia) How bad is it that I’ve had this plant for years and never realised it was Brunnera??!!!

I bought myself a small bunch of Daffodils after a particularly bad day… Nice and cheerful!

I hope you're all having a good weekend, the weather is dull and drizzly here... But after a week or so with no rain the sun and winds have managed to cause some of my plants actually needed watering... I know, crazy isn't it?!


Yoke, said...

Glad that the garden is bursting into life again, Liz.

Why would you get rid of the hybrid (are those the Spanish BB's?) when you still seem to enjoy them when you have them indoors as cut flowers?
The winter Quince wuold be welcome to your birds, at time of year! So that would be a good idea.

Joanne said...

I can't believe you had to water we must have had enough rain to last us all summer. I hope the underground reservoirs are sufficiently replenished to see us through the summer.

At last spring has arrived in Surrey provided you cn find a sheltered spot from the wind.

The Iris look especially nice and hope the daffs cheered you up.

Town Mouse said...

I know that feeling. Suddenly everything happens at the same time, and there's a lot of things that need attention. Looks as if you're on top of it, though.

Miranda Bell said...

Hi Liz - you're more organised than me on all your postings... but lovely to see all those lovely photos... I think all of us hate getting rid of plants - we have a plant swap over here - twice a year on the Sunday just after the clocks have changed so you can never forget... you just take along what you have excess of in the garden and come home with a pile of new plants - all for free! Just a thought. You were also asking about the flowering Quince... we've infact got two which were here before we came - both certainly don't get sun all day and seem to do very well - I find if I prune them well in the late autumn this is the key to getting lots of flowers! Hope this helps... enjoy the rest of your weekend - Mirandax

Liz said...

Hi Yoke,

Thanks, it's so amazing watching everything slowly growing, I love Spring...

Well I could replace the hybrids with English Bluebells instead... lol, I would prefer the real thing was there if I'm honest. I think these have self-seeded from next door, same with my primroses. I don't imagine the previous owners planted bluebells under a privet hedge purposefully.

debsgarden said...

I love your amazing photos of plants just breaking ground! It sounds like you have been doing lots of work. i love that I can get out and really do things in my garden now. Spring is coming!

Liz said...

Hi Joanne,

The dry plants were all those up by the house, but yes otherwise we’ve had very little rain for the past week – only the one drizzly day on Saturday that I can remember recently.
Snow, sleet, hail and frost yes, rain no :)

I had to water my potted Raspberries, the Iris pot and some smaller, seedling pots close to the house where they’re protected from the frosts and also get the full glare of the sun.

I’m glad Spring has arrived for you, hopefully the winds have also died down! We haven’t really had problems with wind here, the clear skies at night have been producing some rather harsh frosts though…

Liz said...

Hi TM,

I have to admit, I’m lazy when it comes to jobs around the garden, I prefer to let nature do its thing as such – which is why there’s still lots of dead plants left in the borders! Lol.

I know I cannot do this forever, they will have to be removed for the coming seasons – especially the dead Cosmos from last year…

It’ll be fine ;)

Liz said...

Hi Miranda,

A plant swap does sound like a good idea, no doubt I could’ve also offered my plants on local forums… It hadn’t crossed my mind – perhaps I was blinded by my dislike for Laurel!

I’ve done some swaps with work colleagues, or rather they’ve passed me things – Cotoneaster and Euonymus – these were too large to sensibly take into work for anyone but yes I ought to have offered them to a home.

Thanks for the advice on the Quince, I’m glad they’re ok without full sun… I may just get one now. My parents have two, with one being a lovely fuchsia colour and I’d love to take some cuttings off it… The site will get plenty of sun in summer, but not in winter because it’s almost at the back of the garden it becomes deep shade when the sun no longer rises high enough (and the summer house blocks any sun).

Liz said...

Hi Debs,

I love being able to get out too! Especially now the sun has been enticing me all week, I’ve hated sitting in the house and wasting such wonderful weather doing nothing. So I’ve been in and out like a yo yo trying to find things to do.

Now I’m back at work this week, so I have to sit in an office wishing I was anywhere else and resenting the fact I can’t take advantage of the sun.

ShySongbird said...

Your Irises look lovely Liz, such a pretty blue. Nothing like a vase of Daffs to brighten the spirits, they are my favourite garden flower.

Regarding Yoke's comment, I left all the Quince fruits where they fell but the birds didn't touch them at all, apples yes but they didn't want to know about Quinces.