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Thursday 1 June 2017

Garden Glimpses, Update

Mary, Mary, quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?

Well, even if you haven't been blessed with the contrary name, how is your garden growing?

I think our Northern Hemisphere generally has been blessed with a lot of rain and the weeds are growing well, at least.

Here's how this Contrary Mary's garden is doing since my April Glimpses.  But please, if you are looking for gorgeous flower shots like I see so many green-fingered bloggers posting at this time of year, please skip this post.  No gorgeousness here!

I'm getting some roses, in yellows, pinks and whites, but not an abundance yet.

 Iris are everywhere, with more on the way.  My fave colour combo in the garden is blues and yellow, so I'm happy that they seem to self-seed.

They've pretty much finished their flowering - their papery leaves aren't very robust.

These are robust!  The self-seeding echium are getting pretty tall.  I'll stand next to one soon to provide the yardstick for this triffid of a plant some time soon.

My huge fatsia japonica died during the winter.  Anyone out there have any experience of dying fatsia?  Quite a few plants have met a similar fate along next to that particular fence.  Hmmnnn.  Maybe I should stop planting there.

However, a couple of the fatsias I planted elsewhere last year are starting to man-up.

The peach tree is now kicking off its leafage.  Right now, this is the totally abandoned part of the garden, the part I rush past with eyes averted.  It's the area that gives me the most stings and bleeding scratches and torn nails.  It's no surprise that I'm ignoring it right now, as I'm enjoying the novelty of having become a lady who has her nails done!

This is also an area I skim past, which has self-seeded echium and agapanthus and an sea ocean of crocosmia taking over half of the flower bed visible on the left.  That means huge amounts of digging to clear the spread.   Just imagine what that would do to my Tutti Fruiti gelled nails!

I'm trying to work out a way to rid this clematis of its dead wood without cutting off it's life-blood.
It's so difficult to identify what is connected to living growth and what is dead growth going nowhere.

Hedycium and palms:

The banana plant I'd struggled to keep alive for years flowered last year and I discovered it was actually a hedychium.  And just when I'd discovered what it really was, it died back in late winter, then carried on dying and is now very dead.

But life still bursts forth in the bird world.  Since we've actively put out seed and nuts (and mince pies) this year, our garden has become the place that most birds like to hang out and play.
But there have been no takers on the little retreat we created for them.  So birdies, please note the following availability.

Vacant.  Nesting box.  Available to  non-smoking  couple with plans to start a family.

And finally, the ceanothus I cut back hard a month ago is closing up the path gap again.  It keeps coming back fighting.

The devil won't be disappointed if he comes looking for idle hands in this garden!

A la perchoine.


  1. I'm very pleased to see that you are a gardener among other talents. Yellow roses here include Julia Child and Grandma's Yellow Rose AKA Nacogdoches.

    It hasn't been a good year here for iris. Maybe I need to go out and rake some soil away from the corms.

    I never thought of it as a sea of Crocosmia but it is a raging flood, more like a tsunami. Isn't it the worst thug? I just pull it up and leave it to be chopped up by the mower.

    Hedychium's usual is to die back and rest during winter. Sorry yours is not reappearing. This ginger likes a lot of water.

    Ceanothus does not grow here in our long hot summers and terrible humidity. It's such a beautiful blue.

    I commented to He-Who-Mows yesterday that it's a good thing we planned for a time when I might not be as enthusiastic about gardening as I once was. Careful planning made it possible to now keep the lawns mowed and low hanging branches pruned and let everything else grow as they will until the day we just bring in the bulldozer.

    1. Oh my, Jean, I've hit the jackpot! I've found myself someone really knows about gardening. I'm so grateful for all your advice and your sharing of experiences. Perhaps the hedychium flowers once and then dies. Or maybe it just didn't get on with our mild and wet winter.
      I like your idea for dealing with crocosmia - brutally!
      You are now my gardening guru.

  2. You can grow so many plants I can't in my frigid zone. I love the variety of iris you have. I don't have anything like that one.

    1. Hi Amy, thanks for popping in. I do enjoy seeing gardens in other areas, it's interesting to see what thrives, what doesn't and what's indigenous (which I think this type of iris is). You keep your garden so beautifully, I place myself on the naughty step when I see your pics!