Monday, 13 June 2011

A bit of a lull

After my little sojourn in Winnipeg, I came back home, to find the garden looking a little "blah".  Although there are one or two things in bloom, in the front yard, things seem to be in a bit of a lull, with the spring flowers well and truly gone over, and nothing very showy ready to take over quite yet.  There are some encouraging signs though.  The new roses I planted this year are looking very healthy, have grown considerably and all of them have lots of buds developing.  The peonies look to be only days away from bursting out and the geraniums won't be far behind.  However, the forget-me-nots which have seeded wildly all over, and which were swathing the garden in a billowing cloud of blue and white were definitely in the phase of needing to be forgotten.  SO, I quickly got to work, cutting back, hauling out and generally tidying up.  On the plus side, I don't see any more signs of the dreaded japanese lily beetle for now, and the centranthus rubre, which I thought hadn't made it through the winter, has sprouted up nicely in the last few days, probably encouraged by the sudden blast of heat last week.  On the negative side, someone has put a size ten boot in the middle of one of my lavender plants and broken half the stems, and aphids have attacked the climbing roses in the back yard (and it was too windy to try spraying with insecticidal soap).  Such are the agonies and ecstasies of being a gardener.

This little dianthus was hidden in a corner, so I moved it early in the spring, to a nice sunny, well drained spot, close to the seems to have adjusted well

Lots of texture, and shades of green, but not much by way of blooms!  And those forget-me-nots have well and truly past their prime.

This self-seeded eryngium is starting to form it's flower.  When in bloom, the whole thing will turn a ghostly silvery-grey.

Lots of white bachelor's buttons (Centaurea montana).  I also now have a rogue patch of bright blue ones.  They must have sprung up from seeds, are intensely blue and delightfully dwarfed.

Looking forward to the opening of the peonies. 

My tree peony was so woe-begone, and outgrowing it's place.

Love my white clematis...I hope I can find the tag at some point to recall what the variety was.
Tree peony "after"....I gave it quite a haircut, and I think it looks the better for it.

This climbing hydrangea is a free gift from my neighbours, and is lush and beautiful, with it's lacey white flowers.

That looks better....tidied up and waiting for the next wave of flowers

Note the patches of bare earth.....see below for the solution!

After I'd finished with the clean up, I was disturbed to see quite a number of open spots, so off I went to Plantworld to find "just a couple of things" to file the gaps.  A trip to plant world almost never ends with "just a couple of things" and yesterday I returned with:

  • a couple of dwarf delphiniums (Dasant Blue) to keep the one I already had company
  • veronica "Sonja" and "First Love"
  • threadleaf coreopsis (Coreopsis verticillata 'Zagreb')
  • Salvia nemorosa 'Caradonna'
  • daylily 'Joan Senior'
  • Iris sibirica 'Silver Edge'
  • a few annuals to fill in any last remaining spaces (Victoria salvias, and white sunshine impatiens)
Hopefully, these will create quite a contrast to the current dullness!
Iris sibirica 'Silver Edge'

Delphinium 'Dasante Blue'

Coreopsis verticillata 'Zagreb'

Hemerocallis 'Joan Senior'

Salvia nemorosa "Caradonna', along with a lovely nepeta

Veronica 'Sonja'

Veronica 'First Love'


  1. I love the clematis and climbing hydrangea. I'm trying to growth both right now so I'm experiencing pangs of envy looking at yours.

    Have you thought about lavender for some of the open spots? I'm not sure how they winter over in Canada. Can't wait to see photos of your garden in a few more weeks when it is a riot of blooms!

  2. The climbing hydrangeas do take a while to get established, so I was lucky to have neighbours with the foresight to plant one before I bought the house! I have lots of lavender plants...just haven't photographed them yet, since they are still wiating to bloom. They can be a bit challenging in my garden - they can be very unhappy with the cold, wet springs we get in Toronto, and my clay soil adds to the problems, but usually, so long as I don't prune them too early in the spring, they come through ok.

  3. Stunning caradonna with nepeta! I have some room to try those two together. Nice. The climbing hydrangeas are slooooooowwww. I planted a good sized plant (3 gallon?) and it didn't flower until five years later. I almost gave up and would have except a wise internet gardener told me to have patience. When it did it exploded and has been exploding ever since. Oh the smell.