Six on Saturday: 6.7.19-Murder in the garden

After last weeks Agatha Christie-themed six, we return to normal service, though Alice has committed a number of garden crimes this week. The weather has been good allowing lots of the plants to romp away. The consensus on the mystery plant was pericaria. I’ll have to see what happens as it continues to flower.
1. Murder in the garden

A few weeks ago Alice helped prune the dwarf Korean lilac bush with her scissors. The problem is now she wants to cut everything down. In a lapse of attention from Amy, Alice took her scissors to the hydrangea. Luckily she can’t reach too far so it’s mainly lost blooms towards the bottom.

Butter wouldn’t melt.

2. Dahlia progress

She then went onto commit a second garden crime pulling and snapping off one of the dahlia seedlings. Luckily it was one of the varieties I’ve grown from seed and I have around 20 on the go. She wanted to plant the part she’d pulled out, so we now have lots of dahlia cuttings on the go. I don’t know that they’ll have time to grow to any height but it kept her busy while I potted some more of the dahlias.

I’ve potted on about 20 of my little Bishops children seedlings. They are getting to reasonable heights now and the sun should bring them on a lot.

And two of the tuber grown dahlias have gone in the ground now, complete with snail beer traps. We even have a few buds.

3. Nemaslug

In order to try and protect the dahlias and the hostas that have gone in the front garden, I’m trying nemaslug. Nemaslug is a biological control using microscopic worms that prey on the slugs. It is supposed to be harmless to other wildlife, unlike pellets. I haven’t used any controls for about 4 years beyond beer traps and barriers but as I have planted so many slug favourites I thought I’d try this so the hostas can make it through their first year. It comes as a powdery mix that you dilute in water and then use diluted again in your watering can.

4. Watering

The ground needs to be wet for nemaslugs to work so I’ve needed to wet the ground in the heat. I’ve not been using the hose recently. I’ve been managing purely from the water butt. But I want the nemaslug to be effective so I set Alice loose with the hose. It might mean the watering is a bit sporadic. The hydrangeas and the slide got more water than other areas but everything, including Alice, was definitely wet.

5. Lily Martagon-pink morning

I planted these in pots last December. These have been the first of my lilies to flower. They were stuck in a shaded corner while the building work went on. This has led to them growing at a bad slant towards the light but the flowers are still stunning.

6. Poppy

The first poppy has come through. I think this is self-seeded from last year as the two I spread this year were red and pink. These are a stunning colour. Last year the wind came through just as they opened and I only got to enjoy each for a day. But it’s been a bit calmer this year.

It’s getting hard to choose six each week now with so much to do and so much going on. If you want to see more of what is going on check the Propagator’s latest blog to read more peoples sixes. I’m going to be trying to do some weeding and clear a few of the spent Spring flowers ready for dahlias going in the ground.

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Six on Saturday: 15.12.18 lily love

Having claimed several times I was done with bulb planting the bulb sales begun. At up to 50% off who could resist. I’ve already got a lot of tulips in, a number of alliums, crocus, daffodils, irises, so it’s time for some new lilies. These are all going in pots for the patio. The advantage being they can be moved to prominent positions as they come into flower. While I probably shouldn’t be creating more pots while the building work goes on who can resist a bargain?

“Remember the most beautiful things in this world are the most useless; peacocks and lilies for instance.”

John Ruskin

1. Lily martagon Arabian knights

The first of two varieties of martagon lilies. Orange isn’t a colour I have much of in the garden. I have a bright orange Asiatic lily that was as neon bright as anything in the garden this year. Then a few yellow plants. The rose is the finest.

I’d considered keeping a limited colour palette but that’s frankly a bit boring. Sometimes referred to as Turk’s cap lily because of the reflexed shape of the petals. They’ll offer a bit of variety to the mix.

2. Lily martagon pink morning

Continuing with a second martagon lily these can grow quite tall so they’ve been given fairly large pots for a single bulb. Martagon lilies were amongst the first grown in British gardens going back as far as the 1500s. They grow happily between shrubs and woodland, so will hopefully be happy surrounded by other pots of ferns and hostas with a few shrubs in pots. The dappled pink will provide a nice colour burst amongst the foliage. Both of these martagon lilies are recommended for fragrance. The scent is important close to the house where it’s more likely to be encountered.

3. Sarah Raven scented lily collection

I’d forgotten I’d ordered these. They were a cheap offer with another order. The set contains a lily regale, Casa Blanca and Muscadet. These are all white varieties. The Casa Blanca is a large highly scented lily. The regale has a trumpet-shaped white flower with a yellow centre. The Muscadet is white with pink speckles. It looks similar to the lily solution I grew this year.

Lily solution

4. Alliums nigrum

Moving away from the lilies these alliums were reduced. A nice dome shaped flower head. It has quite a wild look. They can naturalise as part of meadow planting. I’ve planted them into the border.

5. Niwaki snips

I treated myself to some better snips. I’ve asked for Niwaki secateurs for Christmas. I’m gradually working to get the best tools I can afford. Good quality sharp tools like these make jobs easier and hopefully will last longer. I’ve only had a chance to do a few quick jobs but happy so far. Cut through stems with ease. They feel comfortable and the locking strap seems good.

6. Fuchsia cuttings

I had space in the propagator as my climbing hydrangea cuttings didn’t take. So I’ve put my new snips to work on fuchsia cuttings. They apparently root easily. While not a massive fuchsia fan this has flowered well in its pot well into December. The other two pots are a small leaved honeysuckle variety with delicate flowers I took from my parents garden. They seem to have rooted well now and I’m now pricking out to keep the size down until Spring when they can go outside.

Hope you enjoy your weekends and good gardening to all of you.

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