It’s the time of the year where I start the serious business of bulb planting. A few have already gone in pots but I have a week ahead of half term. So I’m hoping to break the back of the bulb planting. I left off buying tulips until this week as I haven’t seen many I’ve been that bothered for. I’m not a massive tulip fan but they are an easy option for filling a flowering gap in my garden between April and May. Many of the early Spring bulbs have gone over by then but the summer perennials haven’t picked up by then. So I still get a few each year.
1. Queen of the night tulip
I’ve grown these every year since moving in. They are a popular choice as they contrast well with many plants around them. Good in nice solid clumps. I’ve just got the one bag to top up whatever may have faded away or been dug up by accident.
2. Tulips tres chic
These were bought for us as wedding presents so thought I’d get another batch. I’m split between putting them in the border or in pots. In the border with the queen of the nights, they’d contrast nicely but I don’t think they flower at the same time. Or I may try in pots as the lower layer with iris or Muscari on top. Or maybe growing with a dark heuchera.
3. Ballerina Tulips
I’ve never really bothered with orange in the garden so thought I’d try some for a bit of variety.
4. Zurel tulips
The two colours seemed quite striking. With only a small number I’ll probably grow these ones in pots.
5. Carmen iris
Moving away from the tulips, these iris are destined for the front garden.
6. Miniature iris
I grew some of these little reticulate iris this year. I’ll probably add these in with the hosta pots as I did a few weeks ago.
A lot to get planted up there but with half-term, I’ll hopefully get a good chunk done. Autumn seems to be spent largely preparing for next year but I’ve still got quite a bit going on so plenty still to look at next week.
After last week looking at ferns I promised to return to flowers and I have a spectacular collection this week. The tulips are reaching their peak with just a few more tulips to come over the next month or so. I am not a fan of the standard goblet tulips or a lot of the more common colours. I can appreciate them but I’m not that bothered for growing them myself. So over the last few years, I’ve branched off into other forms and come to see them as part of Spring. 1. Dolls Minuet
The dolls minuet tulips are a new introduction this year. I’m very happy with these. They have proved to be good through different phases. Starting as a tightly twisted coil. Then opening into sprawling curled petals. These are lovely short bright tulips. A winner for me.
2. Rococo parrot
I’ve grown black parrots the last two years and really loved them so I thought I’d try a different parrot. Here they are with the previously featured tulip tres chic. The tres chic have gone through a tall elegant phase opening into nice pointed stars. The combination looks a bit messy up close but looks pretty good together from the house.
I’m not show about the rococo tulips if they are a beauty or a beast but they’ve had a lot of comments from visitors and been incredibly popular on Twitter. The colours are certainly striking. I think I like them as a tight bud more than as a sprawling open mess.
3. Queen of the nights
Queen of the nights have featured on a mass number of six on Saturday posts the last few weeks. But they are a beautiful tulip. The lovely dark colour combines well with many plants. Mine is rising out of forget-me-nots and combined with the bleeding heart. A reliable choice.
4. Red Riding Hood
The red riding hood tulips are one of the brightest red I’ve grown. They have wonderful stripey foliage. They’ve been in pots three years and I think are starting to lose their rigour. Only one has come up so far but it is a bright flame in the border.
5. Forgotten tulip-alectric
These were a Tesco bargain bought towards the end of the season a few years ago. I think I bought one box then another when it got late on in Autumn and they were down to clearance prices. They were devastated by slugs the first year but have come back much stronger this year. I had partially forgotten these were in the border but they are another nice pairing with the forget-me-not carpet.
And now for a break from the tulips. The borage has its first flowers and they’ve come out white this year. The borage self-seeds around and I let a handful stay. It is great for the bees and the flowers are edible an can be used for cake decoration. Not that I’ve ever used them for this purpose.
There are still a couple of tulips still to come. I hope you’ve enjoyed the current offerings. If you fancy taking part in six on Saturday check the founding father’s participant guide. Also, check the Twitter hashtag #SixOnSaturday to see more garden offerings. Enjoy your weekends.
I’ve enjoyed the first week of my holiday. We’ve got out few times as a family and just Alice and myself went to Bugtopia. I’m making good progress clearing the front garden. The purchase of a mattock has made clearing the hebes easier. The garden is really coming to life and it’s starting to become harder to select six. But there were a few stand out jobs and flowers this week. 1. Hydrangea Chop Time
The hydrangea mopheads were left on for the Winter. But as lots of growth has started with the warm weather I figured it was time for their yearly haircut. The mops are gone and Alice enjoyed waving them around as she bounced up and down the builder’s plank.
2. Skimmia Japonica
The Skimmia has been slow to get going. I’ve kept it in a pot to give it the soil conditions it likes. They make for good all year interest. The evergreen leaves stay looking nice, the buds, berries and flowers make for a long season of interest. Though looking back at the photo I spotted all the grass I needed to weed from the pot.
3. Water Bird Feeder
I bought a reduced hanging water feeder a few weeks back. Adding the birdbath brought in a lot of the larger birds last year. This one is designed to attract smaller birds. You have to fill it then turn it to hang. This is a little awkward but if the Summer is like last year I think the birds will appreciate another water source.
4. Aquilegia Winky double
We went to the garden centre last Sunday. I let Alice choose a plant for my mum for mothers day as she went on holiday so we hadn’t seen her. Alice chose this and then wanted one for herself. It’s gone into a shady spot near a self-seeded one coming up.
5. Tulip ‘tres chic’
This was a wedding present last year. It’s a rather elegant narrow tulip. I haven’t really grown any like this previously. I’ve avoided the standard Dutch shape so far and mainly gone for parrots but I like these.
6. Lamprocapnos spectabilis ‘bleeding heart’
Bleeding heart is always a joy when this returns in Spring. Such as a fascinating flower. I have a couple dotted about the garden and they seem to come back reliably each year
I’ve bought a white variety “Alba” to go in the front garden. The building work may not be complete before this finishes flowering but even if I plant it after it should come back fine. I think it’ll look good rising up through some of the planned shorter ferns.
I’m off out to Hull beer festival held in Trinity church so I won’t be around. I will catch up on everyone else’s sixes later or tomorrow. I’m never sure whether a beer festival in a church is sacrilegious but it probably draws in more to the church than any other day of the year. In the meantime check out the participants guide if you fancy taking part. Be sure to check today’s six from the propagator to find other six on Saturday blogs in the comments. Have fun everyone!
After a wet Saturday last week, I managed to get out to plant some of the bulbs for next year. So this week will mainly be pictures of packages of what may potentially grow next year.
1. Bulb planter
I purchased a bulb planter. Like much of the nation I saw Monty Son planting his bulbs with ease using one and thought it would save time. I reckon bulb planters sales must have rocketed a few weeks ago when Gardeners World viewers watch Monty plant his bulbs with apparent ease. While not as good as his and the plugs of earth didn’t come out as smoothly as his, it did save time.
2. Mini daffodils
I’d mentioned to my mum wanting some smaller varieties of daffodils in the garden. She bought me two packs of these. I’ve spread them around the border. I have plenty of longer varieties in the ground from previous years, but having a few different heights spreads the season of interest. I should have some flowering earlier and some later. Last year depending on their position affected flowering times. The shadier corner taking longer.
3. Alliums-purple sensation
I already have some purple sensations dotted in the border. Some are now in areas of thick growth where they don’t show, so a few more in new spots will make sure these bee favourites are poking out.
4. Tulips-queen of the night
This year I planted tulips for the first time. I never liked the standard red variety that makes up bedding planting across the country, but I’m starting to find other varieties I think are actually attractive. In the main borders I had queen of the night and Little Red Riding Hood tulips giving a nice display of red and deep purple. The Little Red tulips were pleasant, but not as rich and Scarlett as the photos suggested on the packaging. I’ve topped up the queen of the nights.
I like alliums and have a few varieties in the ground. A couple were stopped by slugs and snails this year, so need to look at that next Spring. I liked the messy explosive nature of the photo on this one.
While I have more bulbs to go, six posts on photos of bulb packaging doesn’t seem that exciting. The teasel I’ve been growing has finally served its purpose. I grew it hoping to bring in the goldfinches. I have enjoyed the shape of the teasel sticking out a bit awkwardly in the border. The bees have loved it. But it was the goldfinches I wanted to bring in. Over the last week I’ve had little swarms of them delighting me. I haven’t managed a picture perfect shot yet as the sun has inconvinently been in the wrong position, but hopefullly see more of them.
Hope you all enjoy the rest of your weekends. I have more bulbs to try to find space for inbetween school work as well as picking up all the blown over pots.