Friday 8th November 2019

It may be November, but there’s always something for Friday Group to enjoy at Garden House.  Now’s the time for the woodburner and bunches of chrysanths.

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Plant Ident.

First of all this week, we looked at leaves and branches from some unusual trees.  Ginkgo biloba (the Maidenhair tree), Metasequoia glytostroboides (the Dawn Redwood), Larix decidua (the European Larch) and Taxodium distichum (the Swamp Cypress).

Q.  Why are they unusual?

A.  They are all deciduous conifers and, unlike most conifers, they shed their leaves in    the autumn.

Biennials Bonanza

Time for some of the biennial seedlings sown earlier in the year to be planted out.  Seeds of biennial plants can be sown in the May, June or July of the year prior to them flowering.  These are some we will be enjoying next year:

Dianthus barbatus ‘Sooty’

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Sweet Williams are always a favourite and these are no exception.  Fragrant, deep red/chocolate flowers are borne above red stems and the leaves are mid green turning to deep ruby-black in colour.  Eye-catching.

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Erysimum cheiri ‘Blood Red’

Part of the Brassica family, the deep red flowers of this wonderful Wallflower will excite admiration from all your garden visitors.  They fill the May-June ‘garden gap’ and, what’s more, have a deliciously spicy scent.  They need to be hardened off slowly before being planted outside, ideally in full sun.  Ensure good drainage and regular dead-heading, and you are on to a winner.  Plant amongst tulips to evoke real garden envy.

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Lunaria annua

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Another member of the brassica family, Honesty can have either white or purple/mauve flowers.  Lunaria means ‘moon-shaped’ – which its seed heads are.  These are an added bonus, decorative in the border and when used for flower arrangements.  The flat, papery seed cases are translucent and shimmer, both indoors and out.  Will self seed around the garden.

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Matthiola

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Come next April, this Sea Stock’s brilliant white flowers will be floating over its grey-green leaves.  Particularly effective in the low-light of dusk, its exquisite scent will fill the air.  So, place this hardy biennial near a path, where it will be much appreciated.  The plant shown above will become the plant below.

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Hesperis matronalis

Sweet Rocket.  This biennial (can also be a short-lived perennial) and its fragrant purple or white flowers appear in late spring/early summer.  Another useful plant to have in the garden to fill the spring-summer gap.  Beautifully scented, as its name implies, and a self-seeder.

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Jobs for the week:

Basically, if you say ‘Plant bulbs’, you’ve got it covered.

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See what I mean?

But, before you start:-

Add leaf mould to improve the condition of the soil and rake the beds to a smooth finish

Those beds look nicely raked

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But of course!

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Plant bulbs

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Plant more bulbs

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See above

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Ditto

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The bulbs are in, but not forgotten

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They are planted deep in the soil.  The Dianthus, and Aniseed, stand guard.

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Something else is planted deep in this soil….

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Wonder if we’ll get a Tortoise Tree?

Plant three or four different types of Narcissi under the Cornus Mas tree

Include ‘Jack Snipe’ and ‘Hawera’, to create a golden glow under its yellow blossoms in February.

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Included

(Is she praying or planting? Both are useful.)

Plant in groups of 5 to 7 bulbs

  Or more!

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One, two, three, four… oh blast, have I counted that one already?

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An additional Achillea will just add to the golden glow.  This one is Achillea ‘Schwellenburg’.

Plant bulbs in pots 

(If not already engaged in planting bulbs in borders.)  This is ‘Avalanche’, for indoor flowering.

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Bulbs tossed and mossed

And bulbs for outdoor pots.  These are Crocuses.

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Hyacinth bulbs planted in the rhubarb bed will create a sophisticated look next spring.  Oh yes.

Remove Salvia uliginosa from large pots; plant up with a mix of orange/red tulips and orange and red Erysimum.

Five little wallflowers sitting on a wall…

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Plant bulbs in the top garden near the Pelargonium Palace greenhouse.

Plant deeply – at least a trowel’s depth, wriggle the trowel about to create a hole, then plant the flatter side of the bulb against the back of the hole.

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Instruction

And delivery

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Design a scheme for perennial planting in the top garden

Hang on a minute.  No bulbs???

Not one!

Here are the plants in all their glory

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First, lay out your scheme

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Consider from all angles

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Ready, set…

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Plant!

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Take tender plants into the greenhouse 

This one might be Begonia luxurians

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Some will need removing from their pots and re-potting

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Prick out and pot on biennials and hardy annuals as necessary

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Hollyhocks!

(You mean Alcea rosea?)

Plant Sweet Williams in the bed behind the greenhouse

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Good job

Triumph!

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A last sweep round to create the perfect finish.

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True dedication

No sign of any bulbs now!

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I wonder.  Maybe more next week?

Probably

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Those tulips don’t plant themselves, you know.

And who planted you there?

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I’m not planted

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I’m hibernating

 

 

 

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