Spring Bulbs

I don’t usually bother planting bulbs each year. Those in the front garden – crocus, grape hyacinths and dwarf narcissi – have been there for several years, with the addition of alliums and nectaroscordum in autumn 2020.

In the back garden, I have daffodils and narcissi rescued from various borders and dumped in pots. Apart from an all too brief few weeks in spring, they live at the back of the garage. The only things I took any trouble with last year were my four ‘Blue’ pots containing Pickwick crocus, anemone Blanda Bleu, and grape hyacinths.

This year, however, I ordered some new bulbs (snowdrops x 50, anemone Blanda Alba x 20, and white fritillery x 15) which arrived on 6 October and had to be dealt with. (I’ve just noticed that the anemone is ‘White Splendour’ but have no idea if they are the same as ordered or a substitution, not that it matters. A white anemone is a white anemone is a white anemone!)

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Six on Saturday: 12 June 2021

With the weekend forecast set to HOT and VERY HOT, I’m planning on staying inside with the blinds closed. Nextdoor’s trees have been shedding fat catkins for a fortnight and now the patio is awash with laburnum blossom. Of couse, he doesn’t see any of it – or have to clean it up – because the prevailing wind is from his direction.

Sweet pea ‘Cupani – I’ve now planted every pot on either side of the arch in Raised Bed A and they’ve been flowering for two weeks. Not yet the bower of sweet perfume I’d hoped for, but getting there. Mine are approximately two to three feet tall; they should grow to between five and six feet tall. They probably need feeding (and dead-heading).

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Six on Saturday: 5th June

A week (nearly) of hot and dry weather, I should really take advantage and sow more vegetable seeds – but I have Jerusalem artichokes to pot on and tomato plants that absolutely must go into growbags this weekend. So, I’m off to the garden centre to hunt some down – six will do for now – enough for 12 tomatoes (I cut them in half and use the bag as a pot). This year, they will all be grown in the Tiny Greenhouse, so I’ll have to clear that too. But I’l be back later to read other Sixes when it’s too hot to work outside,

The first iris came out last Sunday – slightly darker in colour than it shows here – by Thursday, there was quite a show. Gorgeous, and much admired by passers-by. I thinned these out by half last year.

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Six on Saturday: 22 May 2021

Yesterday, I thought I’d be taking all my photographs for The Propagator’s Six on Saturday event through the windows as it hasn’t stopped raining for more than twenty minutes each day. But I managed a quick dash around the garden between showers this morning.

This allium aflatunense is the first to open, flowing right on cue (May/June) with another six buds on their way. It’s a little darker than the photograph shows here.

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Six on Saturday: 1 May 2021

Sunny and warm on Monday; rain showers on Tuesday; cold and wet on Wednesday; cold and hailstones on Thursday; frost on Friday. This morning started sunny so I’ve put my peas, beans, sweetpeas and dwarf raspberry outside. I wonder how long it will be before I have to recue them from hail. sleet or snow?

Last Monday evening, we ate the first home-grown salad of the year, consisting of mizuna leaves, flat parsley, and red-veined sorrel. (We had the same again last night with the addition of red salad bowl leaves) All of these were the only survivors of last year’s failed experiment to grow salad crops all year round; after months with little or no growth, they finally got going in March.

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Six on Saturday: 20 March 2021

After a grey but dry start to the morning the sun has broken through the cloud cover. If it hangs around long enough, I might be tempted out to the front garden to remove some dead foliage.

I’ve been watching sparrows collecting dried Mexican feather grass, one had so many rammed into its beak it could hardly take off. Despite plenty of interest, I don’t think we have any blue tits nesting in the bird box, which is a shame. This time last year, we were building the Tiny Greenhouse and they were in and out of the nest box all day long.

Never mind, there is always plenty of wildlife to see in other Six on Saturday posts, hosted by The Propagator. I’ll be popping in from time to time to have a look between study activities.

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This pot of mizuna mix is now supplementing our salads. It’s a shame it couldn’t do the same over the winter months as intended! I have a tray of the same leaves in the Potting Shed, and some new lettuce seedlings are making an effort.

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