About my garden

Monday 16 December 2019

On the Door On Monday

Not in a vase or in the house but rules go out the window at Christmas. 
I have a few bedraggled flowers and some greenery in the garden, I'll show some next week, but here is my Christmas Wreath:

I'm making a lot of traditional wreaths this week for other people but mine is a departure and evolved as it went along. 

I've made all the bases with twigs or prunings. Jasmine is good and also Elaeagnus. Willow too but I only use that when I make a half wreath and the willow will be on show. It's too lovely to cover up. 
It's easy to twist up the stems into a circle and tuck them in under each other. 

This shows how I did not prune the Elaeagnus this year!
I mostly don't add moss but I did with this one. It's from our shady lawn. 

Then I added some greenery and lots of brown plus a little pink and red. 

It includes - Lleylandii - green and variegated, Pittosporum, some other conifer, Sedum flower heads, poppy heads, Hydrangea flowers straight from the plant, Alder (probably), Rose hips, grass heads and another head possibly Echinacea, Buddlejia leaves, Caryopteris flower heads. 

I did use wire to wrap round at the end, as there were lots of small bits, but usually I use string and find it works fine on a traditional wreath. Here are my more traditional ones:

Thanks for visiting. Hop over to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden to see what everyone has found to put In a Vase on Monday.  Thanks Cathy. 

Monday 9 December 2019

Time for twigs In a Vase on Monday

It's December so slim pickings in the garden in the UK. 
I still have a few Chrysanthemums flowering and some even outside. Avignon Pink has not liked the rain but another one, which might be Porto Purple, is still flowering valiantly. 
I recently pruned/ trimmed some willows and here are some of the prunings in my vase. 

Most of these have pretty red stems and I will have the name somewhere but it might take some searching to find it. 
These willows are not particularly tall and I hope that by pruning I'll encourage more growth. I brought a few in and saved the rest for weaving/construction/supports in the future. 
We had a comedy  moment when one of our cats had a little play with the trailing stems. Mr C dived across the room shrieking 'Is there water in that vase?' and saved the day! I thought it was funny but he didn't and I had to move it. 

Cathy at Rambling in the Garden is working along the same lines this week. Join in here. 

Monday 18 November 2019

Late colour In a Vase on Monday.

Along with Cathy, I have Chrysanthemums In my Vase on Monday this week. Join in here
I was sorry to miss last week's anniversary mini vases. I was away in beautiful North Wales enjoying the autumn colour. 

These are Avignon Pink and Tarantula Red.
I love them for late colour and they seem to be easy to grow. Last year I left them in my tunnel and green house until after Christmas, potted them up but left inside then threw them outside when I needed the space. I'm not sure when that was. Probably spring. They stayed in the pots until mid summer when I planted them inside again. Some are outside and have buds on but some have been destroyed by the continuing rain. 
I also took cuttings in spring which are very easy. 

And now the awful truth about me and vases. Here is jar (Mayonnaise, it's not even a vase) which has been on my kitchen window sill for about 4 weeks, maybe longer. The Phacelia at the back has doubled in size and the Persicaria has grown roots. Aim for this week is to pot it up. It also has very pretty white flowers on it. This is where I pop any odds and ends or broken stems and they just sit there. Are you shocked?

 Sometimes I take out the dead flowers! Sometimes not. Sometimes the water runs out. 
This is Avignon Pink which starts peachy and gets more pink as it ages.

Monday 4 November 2019

Jewels In a Vase on Monday.

I think I've made progress this week in spite of the continuing rain. 
I made a good start with removing turf for enlarging my bed last week, then was distracted with other things. Mr C and I took advantage of the dry and sunny (at times) Sunday and finished the job. 

Today I moved a few plants because I wanted to get started but conditions are not very good. If every part of you is muddy it's too wet! I even liberated two plants which have been waiting patiently in pots. It's exciting to get on with it. 

I have a few Chrysanthemums in my vase today. These are actually a week old. I've just trimmed them and taken out a few ropey ones. You really get tired of them before they die, they last so long, which, of course, is why they sell so well on garage forecourts. 
I like to think mine are superior to those cousins. 

In here are Sheer Purple, Orange Allouise, Froggy and a Cream One Which is Supposed to be White. (But actually I love it). These are not colours I would usually put together but they are leftovers really.
Join in with Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for In a Vase on Monday. 

Monday 21 October 2019

Autumn shades In a Vase on Monday

It actually stopped raining for more that 10 minutes this week so I've been able to make progress with jobs in the garden. Lots of cutting back and down but also plans for improving a bed. I'd wanted a path to weave through this bed for easier access, as it's quite large. As always when Mr C gets involved it turns from a job to A Project. 
He says - to get a nice curve on the path we'd need to enlarge the bed, what do you think?
As always, I say - Oh alright then, if you insist. 

Just like that he's out with a rope marking it out. 
The we start digging up turf. 
It comes up nice and easily as it's so damp but not too soggy. 

I have dozens of plants in pots waiting for a new home as well as rooted cuttings. I'd love to get them planted before the winter. 
This bed was the place I put everything which didn't have a home. It'll be good to plant with more thought. 

Oh yes, and here is my vase:

Two kinds of Chrysanthemum. Avignon Pink and Pandion Bronze plus scented geranium foliage (Thank you Amanda at The Running Wave), Abelia and some Michaelmas Daisy. I don't know the variety of these. I've transplanted them from someone else's garden to a place where they can spread about but not run amok as they are liable to. Also grasses Panicum 'Frosted Explosion' (I have seeds if anyone in the UK would like some) and Setaria. 
This is one of my favourite vases - terracotta which I like for autumn colours. 

See what you can find to put In a Vase on Monday and join in with Cathy at Rambling in the Garden. 

Monday 14 October 2019

Salvage In a Vase on Monday

I'm a little later than usual posting but here is my vase. 

My poor dahlias have not enjoyed the incessant rain we have had for weeks. 
300mm in the last 40 days and it's rained for 29 of those 40. Not always all day every day but often. Hard to believe we had 6 weeks without any rain. What is going on?

There are a few dahlias which can be salvaged. I wouldn't normally cut these as closed as they are but I doubt they will look good when fully open. I like to the way the Penhill Dark Monarch tones with Rip City ( the dark maroon one). 
There is also a little bit of  self seeded Ammi which is flowering in the dahlia patch. Always welcome. Amaranthus and Artemisia annua which smells divine. I was reliably informed that this was easy to grow. I managed to get 2 to germinate! I'm hopeful of saving seed and having better luck next year. My two plants are around 4 feet tall and covered in flowers. Has anyone had more success with Artemisia annua?

(I realise I've mentioned millimetres and feet - I went to school at a confused time!)

So this is popped on my kitchen windowsill to draw the eye away from the dismal day outside and make me happy. As Cathy rightly reminds us, we get no end of pleasure from bringing the outside in. Join in with In a Vase on Monday and find out. 

Monday 30 September 2019

Leftovers In a Vase on Monday

Here is my vase for this week. 

I often have bits and pieces left over from bouquets and arrangements. (In case you don't know, I started Flower Farming last year. I've shared some of that in previous posts). Sometimes I decide not to use them or sometimes I've cut too much. I'm getting much better and predicting how much I need for a particular size bouquet and also what will go together. I usually write a cutting list but I don't always stick to it. That helps me with costing and also makes cutting quicker. The big surprise about flower farming is how long cutting takes. 
Often the leftovers make it to a vase on my kitchen windowsill. 

The pink and yellow dahlia here is Jowey Gypsy. I'm not quite sure what I was thinking when I ordered this tuber. It really is bright pink and yellow. 
It looks quite lavender here and also on the sales website so that must be why I chose it. It's lovely but not subtle in any way. 
I haven't braved using it yet but this week I had a go at putting it in a bouquet. I damaged the stem of this one so it is now gracing my kitchen along with Dahlia Karma Naomi, Salvia horminum, Panicum Frosted Explosion and three sprigs of Love in a Puff (Cardiospermum).

I can't stress too much how much I'm loving Frosted Explosion. If you don't grow it already get it now. It is an annual but seeds readily (I'm told). It adds panache to every arrangement. I put it into everything. 

Here is the bouquet I made for an Anniversary order last week. I hope the recipient liked it. 

I added in some other yellows and some blues. 
This is me checking it in a mirror and trying to get a photo. You nearly get the impression of the real pink colour. I'm not going to list the contents but do ask if you'd like to know the name of something. 

As usual visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for In a Vase on Monday and join in the fun. I guarantee you'll add to your plant wish list. 

Monday 9 September 2019

Just Dahlias In a Vase on Monday

I had a lovely day out yesterday to the Bishop's Palace in Wells where there was a Rare Plants Fair. 
Noelle and I visited and spent a happy admiring all the plants. I wonder how much one of everything would have cost? There weren't many things I wouldn't have wanted. ( I was quite restrained). Then it was off to Noelle's for coffee and delicious cake and I came away with more plants. I have lots of plans for planting now but had no time so far. Today it's very wet but looks as though it may dry up later. 

Here are some of the wondrous dahlias growing in my patch this year. 

Pinks first. L-R Miracle Princess, Jowey Mirella, Karma Lagoon, Rip City, NOT Creme de Cassis as it is supposed to be. 

Miracle Princess ( I think)

 Any ideas?

Karma Lagoon. 
 Then oranges:
 L-R Wine Eyed Jill, David Howard, Ginger Snap, Cornel Brons, DH again and Apricot Star. Plus 2 Zinnia
 Wine Eyed Jill
Ginger Snap

I hope I have the names right for the pinks. Some are quite similar and the tags are buried in the wet plants. 

Join in with Cathy at Rambling in the Garden and find out what everyone else has found to put In a Vase on Monday. 

Monday 26 August 2019

Showing off again In a Vase on Monday

This Saturday was the 50th Doulting annual Handicrafts and Produce Show. 
I think it's a great show given the size of the village and there are entries from the village and the wider area. I thought there were fewer children's entries this year but on the whole it was well supported and there was lots to see. Some classes only had one or two exhibits but as there are 130 classes, including the children's, that's a lot of choice. 
I managed to get some entries in this year and here are a few:

 First is my vase - 'An arrangement of at least 4 herbs' First out of 2! 
I was pleased to find so much to put in and there is so much colour, not just green- purple sage, feverfew, flowering mints, parsley, basil, nepeta, pinapple sage, marjoram, rosemary and lemon verbena. 

'Corsage'. I dared to enter the Floral Art category and was staggered to win with this corsage. I thought it was way too un-traditional. 

Panicum 'Frosted Explosion', Jacobea maritima, Nigella seed head, Achillea ptarmica, Zinnia flower, purple sage, white Sedum, Argeratum and tiny Ammi head. Only the Zinnia was wired and I'm happy to say it still looks ok after 48 hours!

'A vase of cottage garden flowers and foliage' No comment but guess which one was mine?

There were amazing vegetables which I wished were mine, but weren't:

The beetroot and potatoes here are normal size. 

And amazing flowers and arrangements (again not mine):

Of course there were also cooking and baking, knitting and photographs, etc, etc. Lot's of fun though hard work for those staging it. Some people take the growing very seriously and the classes are hotly contested. 

This morning I was out very early to beat the soaring temperatures due again. Lots of cutting back is necessary not and planning for next year. It's too dry to move and plant just now but I can plan. 

Join in with In a Vase on Monday with Cathy at Rambling in the Garden. 

Monday 19 August 2019

Recovering In a Vase on Monday

As Noelle has mentioned, we opened our gates this weekend as part of Flower Farmers' Big Weekend. We had no idea what to expect and I was certainly worried about it last week. 
Of course, it turned out fine. We had plenty of visitors who were interested in all aspects of the garden and flower farm and they all ate lots of cake and raised £150 for our local hospice, Dorothy House. 
Will I do it again? I'm not sure, we'll see. 

Here is my vase:

This is a quick snap with my phone and now looks a bit grey. I definitely have no energy for fiddling with cameras. 
The aster at the front is Blue Ice which I like very much. 
Also included are other Asters, Dahlia 'Karma Naomi', Phlox 'Sugar Stars',  peachy Limonium which I will take out and dry, Argeratum and Limonium suworowii which is heading out of the picture. 

In fact, I may dry a lot of this. I'm trying all sorts as dried flowers are having a resurgence. Look out for dried flower/foliage wreaths on here soon!

Join in with Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for In a Vase on Monday. 

Monday 29 July 2019

All for me In a Vase on Monday

Often now I make arrangements for other people and my own vases are either left overs popped in a vase on the kitchen windowsill or a few bits and pieces jammed in together. 
I made this for myself. 

I started with the Dahlia ' Apricot Star' and walked round cutting things to go with her. 
 I chose Sweet Pea 'Heaven Scent', Phlox 'Cherry Caramel', Amaranthus 'Velvet Curtains', Scabious 'Which one is that again?', Perilla, Antirrhinum 'Dark Monarch' and a couple of trails of Love in a Puff. 
I'm testing the Perilla - red/green large leaves, as a foliage plant. It has grown huge in my poly tunnel, perhaps to big to use and I think it might flop. Perhaps better outside but  I think it would probably get eaten there. Hmm.

I think it's a little tight and squashed in and I should have left more gaps but I love the colours. 
10 min to make and 20 min to photograph!

Visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for In a Vase on Monday to see what everyone has chosen this week. 

Monday 22 July 2019

One shade of pink In a Vase on Monday.

I've become even more obsessed with the weather and thankfully we have had some rain after 6 weeks with hardly any. Our water tanks were empty and I was battling with hoses. We had a fair amount and we may get more this week along with soaring temperatures. I am not so keen on those. The rain should perk everything up though, it was all looking dry and starting to brown. 
Again I have just one thing in my vase this week. 

Malope trifida 'Grandiflora Choice Mixed', or so it says on the packet but in fact, so far, they are all this same pink. There should be pale pink and white as well. 

I'm trying these flowers to see how well they last in a vase. Some drop but more open higher up the stem. They flowers are very delicate and I'm not sure it's really something I can use for sale but it's nice and showy in the garden. In fact, I've just realised I could move some to a spot where I need a bit more colour. 
Has anyone tried it and have any advice?

Thanks for visiting, for more fun and fancy vases visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for In a vase on Monday. 

Monday 8 July 2019

Scaled down In a Vase on Monday.

Even though we are in the season of abundance, I have chosen to make a tiny posy this week. 
I saw a mini-bouquet on Instagram here and wanted to have a go. 

I posted one on Instagram last week and here is another. Quick to make and, of course, you can use all kinds of tiny things. 

I used Achillea ptarmica, Linaria, Briza, Catananche, White lavender, Oregano, NIgella heads, Lemon balm - which incidentally is a great foliage plant for vases. 

Thank you to Cathy for hosting In a Vase on Monday. Never ceasing to entertain with her inventiveness. 

One more thing I found on Instagram, for people with nothing better to do - have a look at this: One Bouquet Per Day - flowers and vintage dresses!

You can see that our babies are barely ducklings any more and are nearly as big as their parents. 
The white patch is the wing feathers growing out. They are mostly feathered now with just a little fluff. 6 weeks old. 

They have graduated from the washing up bowls and are now allowed in the paddling pool. I've let them out a few times and to hoover up the slugs.