Ladybird, ladybird…….

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Solanum and honeysuckle

As shown from the solanum and honeysuckle on the trellis, our front garden remained free of ash from next door’s bonfire,

Ash on pulmonaria leaves

and, although some the precipitation, such as this on the pulmonaria

Ash on Japanese anemones

and Japanese anemones, remains,

Dragon Bed

the fire has died down and we are able to see the garden views again, and beds like that of the Dragon are able once more to savour the sunlight.

Dahlia

This decorative dahlia

Oval Bed 2

sharing the Oval Bed with orange hawkweed,

Oval Bed

bidens, phlox, and rampant rudbeckia, basks in a more pleasant source of warmth.

Gladiolus and sweet peas 1

Gladioli and sweet peas retain their pristine whiteness;

Iron urn

contents of the iron urn cascade over the Brick Path;

Chrysanthemums 1

and these potted chrysanthemums enjoy the increase of light provided by the removal of the North Breeze jungle.

Stinging nettle in Elizabeth's Bed

Splendid stinging nettles, like this one in Elizabeth’s Bed, are making their presence felt. They will have to go.

Tomatoes

Little cherry tomatoes are ripening;

View across grass patch

the grass looks lush;

View from Phantom Path across Weeping Birch Bed

and the Weeping Birch Bed,

Kitchen Bed

Kitchen Bed,

Rose GardenMirror in Rose Garden

and Rose Garden, fresh again.

Ladybird on dahlia

Now, what do we have here? “Ladybird, ladybird, fly away home; your house is on fire and your children are gone.”

This afternoon we are on our way to Emsworth for a family celebration of Becky’s birthday. We will stay overnight and I will report on that tomorrow. It will be an Italian meal at Nicolino’s.

 

 

Spinners Garden

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This morning, after a brief time in our own garden where

Heligan Path

The Head Gardener has been replenishing and planting the beds either side of the Heligan Path;

View to Rose Garden fro Brick Path

 sunlight brightened the Star of India clematis on the Gothic Arch;

Clematis and orange hawkweed

and another example was suspended from the prunus pissardi above the orange hawkweed,

Jackie drove us to Spinners Garden at Boldre. This small privately-owned garden has a fine collection of rare plants in its tranquil woodland setting

Lymington Valley

overlooking the Lymington Valley.

Jackie at entrance to Spinners Garden

Jackie was immediately taken with the blue cranesbill geraniums along the drive.

Spinners Garden sign

Although past their best, the rhododendron and azalea shrubberies still had much to offer.

Path 1

Paths off the entrance drive held much promise.

Lacecap hydrangea 1Lacecap hydrangea 2

There were different varieties of lace cap hydrangea;

Fern

many different ferns;

Flower beds 1

well stocked flower beds,

Wedding cake tree

including a cornus controverta Variegata, or wedding cake tree,

Schizostylis

and schizostylis or, if you must, Kaffir lily.

Cornus 1Cornus 3

Other cornuses were plentiful.

Trees and shrubbery 1

Splendid trees soared above the shrubberies, where

Camellia fruit pods camellia fruit pods glistened;

Brunnera leaves

and in the shadier areas leaves of brunnera

Acer leaves

and acer formed intriguing patterns.

Steps

Steps led up to the highest level,

Rodgersiae and orchids

where rodgersia shared their bed with wild orchids,

Azalea 1

and white azaleas bore occasional signs of pink parentage.

Waterfall

Fed by a man-made stream

Lily pond and bridgeLily pond and bridge 2

Lily pond and bridge 3

at a lower level lies a lily pond spanned by a wooden bridge.

Irises

Irises rise from the margins,

Damselflies and water boatmen

and damselflies and water boatmen flit around the lily pads.

Tractor, gulls, and cornus

From the cabin where we could buy tea and coffee, we watched gulls mobbing a tractor digging out soil to create a lake for a neighbour further down the slopes.

Aquilegia

Aquilegias waved us farewell as we walked back to the car.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s delicious chicken jalfrezi, boiled rice, and parathas, followed by Helen’s sublime lime and ginger cheesecake.

The Garden Map

Come for a further wander down the garden paths.

Rose

Stepping out of the utility room stable doorway, we meet this little rose that was bramble-bound last year.

Poppy

This frilly new pink poppy sits quite well against the red Japanese maple, visible from the kitchen window.

Grass patch

Opposite our small patch of grass, we think designed for a dog loo,

Penstemon, thalictrum, New Zealand flax, Japanese maple

against the backdrop of a yellow Japanese maple, speckled New Zealand flax arches over red penstemon and budding thalictrum.

Phantom path

Passing the other end of the Phantom Path, at the far end we see a yellow-green-leaved tree, only one branch of which seemed alive last year, before we lopped out all the dead wood.

Orange Hawkweed

Jackie transplanted the outspoken orange hawkweed, regarded in other parts of the world as an infestation, from the former kitchen garden. It now enlivens the Oval Bed.

Sambucus

This Sambucus, planted not so long ago, now blooms behind the potting shed.

Back drive

The back drive is now framed by new planted troughs. In the top right hand corner of the picture can be glimpsed a basket suspended from the slender arch through which we now walk into the garden. Please don’t tell the head gardener that I keep banging my head on it.

From the end of the drive we turn left to see how Hallmark Builders are getting on with their ‘massive’ project on the recently sold The Spinney at number 11.

Wall building

Two men are building a beautifully curved wall.

Rodgersia

Back down our own brick path we see the delicate pink rodgersia, yet another member of the saxifrage family.

Dead End Path

Just past this plant lies the Dead End Path.

Rosa Gallica

Back at the house, the pink striped Rosa Gallica is now blooming against the kitchen wall,

Rosa Glauca

and the Rosa Glauca soars above the patio.

Taking visitors on a meandering trip is rather easier than the task on which the head gardener has been engaged during much of the last two or three days. Jackie working on garden map

John Whitworth recently expressed his need of a garden map.  We are not lovers of straight lines, but, had we had a few more, Jackie’s task would have been so much easier. When she proudly presented the finished chart, I then had the task of reproducing it. Since it had been drawn on A3 paper, which is too large for my scanner, I had to photograph it with my little SX700 HS Canon. Having the benefit of neither Ken Morse’s equipment nor  his expertise, it was difficult to achieve an unwarped rectangle from above. Here is the finished masterpiece:

Garden map

Later this afternoon I had transferred the bonfire ashes to the compost heaps, and raked back the shingle that I’d scraped out for a makeshift hearth.

It is hardly surprising that there had been no time for cooking. There was nothing for it but to go out for dinner. It was Spice of India that was graced with our presence, for which we were rewarded with an excellent meal. My main course was naga chicken with special fried rice; Jackie’s was chicken shaslik and salad. We shared a paratha, and both drank cobra.

The Gauntlet

Scarlet PimpernelWhen I read Baroness Orczy’s timeless novel, ‘The Scarlet Pimpernel’, I had a vague idea that this was a flower, but didn’t know what it looked like. We have a lovely little orange weed, rather like a forget-me-not in size, that crops up all over the garden. I haven’t been digging it up, because I find it so attractive. I was rather pleased, then, when, this morning, the head gardener informed me that this was scarlet pimpernel.

PoppyNasturtiumDifferent coloured poppies continue to bloom, if only for a day.

Antirrhinums and pelargoniumWe also have nasturtiums, to which snails seem rather partial.

Different hued antirrhinums manage to hold their own with strident pelargoniums.

In the last of today’s plant photographs we have pilosella aurantiaca, otherwise known as orange hawkweed, a plant that in some parts of America and Australia is considered as an invasive species.

IMG_9090

Today I completed the clearance of the right hand side of the front driveway that Jackie had begun yesterday. I uprooted the last of the brambles and pruned most of the shrubs very severely, revealing more flowers, such as the day lilies. Jackie, who embellished the wall with a window box, assures me the heavily pruned growth will burgeon again next year. I certainly didn’t rival her treatment of the mahonia.

Painstakingly, I conveyed to a convolvulus that was making its way up an ornamental cherry tree that its presence was no longer required. Maybe I should have waited for a flower. It may have been a morning glory. I tied up the white rose that had Front driveGardening gloveClematistaken to the ground in its bid to escape the other thorny rambler, which has torn holes in the fingers of my gardening gloves and left its mark on those inside.

A new pair, or at least the right hand gauntlet may be in order.

An attractive clematis now quivers in the breeze above the roses on the archway through to the front garden.

Fortunately, our guests of yesterday evening left enough of Jackie’s delicious beef casserole for us to finish it today. Strawberries and ice cream were to follow. I drank some Yellow Tail shiraz 2013, also courtesy of last night.