My garden in 2013

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last updated 11 May 2014

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Flower Power | 2009 | 2013 | Primulas | Wisley 22/4/03

I now live in my parents' former home in Malvern, Worcestershire, England, with a somewhat larger garden than the one in Horsham. Here are some photos taken here this year. I'll try and keep this page updated as the months go by.


I gave mum this Magnolia stellata as a mothers' day present some years ago (after a wonderful flowering cherry tree we used to have in the front garden had had to be removed after getting Silver Leaf disease). It is not a fast-growing plant but now looks lovely in springtime. Magnolia stellata
Hyacinths Some Hyacinths, that mum must have planted, flowering in a tub on our back patio. This tub also has a lovely Thyme variety growing in it.
Some mini-daffodils in another tub. Narcissi
Narcissi Actaes Some Narcissi 'Actaea' I planted a couple of years ago.
I brought some of the Ipheions from Horsham and planted them in this bed by the back patio. Ipheons
Primroses A clump of primroses in the back garden.


Last summer our neighbour had had to remove a large tree which had been growing next to our fence but which was too close to his house. He then built this wall and replaced the fence. I jumped at the opportunity to start a new flower border here as this is a lovely, sunny South-facing spot.
On the left are a group of Mulleins (Verbascum) that had self-set from last year. In the centre I have planted a Clematis 'Maidwell Hall'. I put in a few other plants, and bedded out some Polyanthus, last autumn.
New front border


Bergenia There are several clumps of these Bergenia around the garden.
These autumn-planted pansies making a real splash of colour in the new front border. Pansies
Buddleia sapling A Buddleia I have grown as a cutting and planted in a sunny spot in the front lawn.


The Potentilla I planted in the front border. Potentilla in front border
Right-hand end of front border At the other end, despite the cold, late spring, my bedding plants are now starting to look really colourful.
Nemesias are a favourite of mine as they give bold splashes of colour in late spring/early summer. A yellow Nemesia
Broom I planted this Broom (Cytisus) in a back flower bed a couple of years ago.
A cream Nemesia. A cream Nemesia


Rear patio bed A shot along the rear patio bed. In the foreground are some pansies and an Oxalis corymbosa; beyond them is a Parahebe catarractae.
The front border, full of colour. The Mulleins are growing their flower stems and some Crocosmia are shooting forth towards the right. Front border
Marguerite A yellow Argyranthemum I've put in a tray by my cold frame.
A Cerastium I planted a couple of years ago. Cerastium
Chives I also planted some Chives a couple of years ago, and they have been self-setting everywhere...


I haven't grown candelabras for several years until now - Horsham was too arid in the summers - but I'm seeing how this Primula bulleyana will get on in the patio bed, which offers partial shade. Primula bulleyana


Patio beds A view along the patio beds, with the red rose bush beyond.
A view down the garden from our patio. In the bed in the middle distance are a Rock Rose (Helianthemum) and some blue Salvia. View from patio
Herb bed Our herb bed.
The Thyme in the tub with the Hyacinths is now in full flower. Thyme in tub
Front border Round the front, meanwhile, there is lots of colour...
...and the Mulleins are flowering nicely. Mulleins
Red Argyranthemum A red Argyranthemum in the front border.
The Nemesias are still vibrant. Nemesias and Argyranthemum


Kniphophia 'Orangey' A scion of the Red Hot Poker (Kniphophia) from Horsham, which I call 'Orangey', and now in full flower.
We've also got Yellow Loosestrife (Lysimachia punctata) here, in the border at the bottom of the back lawn. Yellow Loosestrife


Coreopsis Some of the other plants are now coming to the fore in the front border, such as this Tickseed (Coreopsis)...
...the English Marigolds (Calendula officinalis)... English Marigold
Snapdragons ...and these Snapdragons.
The Mulleins, meanwhile, have grown side spikes! Mullein with side spikes
View along front border The view along the front border, where the Crocosmia 'Lucifer' are coming into flower.


The Buddleia in the front lawn has now come into flower. This is a summer-flowering variety - Buddleia x weyeriana 'Sungold' - and not to be confused with the spring-flowering "Orange Ball Tree" which is Buddleia globosa... Buddleia
Buddleia with bumblebees ...and the bumblebees are loving it! (They are nesting in an old air brick round the side of the house.)


I had some good fortune with the weather this weekend. On the Saturday I started the first stage of revamping our lower patio bed.
As her health began to fail, mum had had a permeable rubber sheet laid down with gravel on top and rockery stones, and over the ten years since it had become unkempt and hard to manage so I knew I needed to start again. Though showers were forecast, I managed to remove the gravel and the sheet from this area. Underneath I found what looked like heavy compacted clay, fairly dry after the prolonged heatwave, so my heart sank - and at that point it started to rain. So I hurriedly sprinkled some lime over it and went indoors. The rain continued well into the night.
But, on the Sunday after returning from a day out and finding there hadn't been any further rain, I thought I'd have a go at turning it over with a fork. After the night's wetting, this proved to be much easier than I'd expected! As well as the moisture having made the soil much more workable, there were a lot of tap roots I ran across which had obviously helped break it up. We had another short shower when I had almost done this, but that soon passed. After finishing the digging I went to our compost heap and brought back two barrowloads of nice compost which I laid on the top, sprinkled with Growmore granules, and lightly turned in with a handfork. By now the soil was light, beautifully moist and very friable. Five minutes later it was also the home for three pansies, two Lantanas and a Delospermum! I couldn't have dreamed the night before that I'd be ready to start planting it up so soon!
Lower patio bed
Crocosmia 'Lucifer' Meanwhile the Crocosmia 'Lucifer' has come into full bloom.


A butterfly and no less than nine bumblebees enjoying the flowers on my Marjoram - see if you can spot them all. Wonder what they're brewing up! :) Marjoram with bumblebees and butterfly
Marjoram with bumblebees and butterfly A closer view of a few of them.
A close-up of some Crocosmia flowers. Crocosmias
Hollyhock One of the Hollyhocks in my front border.


The first flower on my Dahlia. Dahlia
Sweet pea A close-up of a perennial sweet pea flower. Looks a bit like a pair of swans, doesn't it?


A shot of one of the Crocosmia groups after removing the sheet across the bed, showing how they spread by growing stolons (horizontal underground stems) that lead to cormels and thence to offset corms. (I had cut a hole in the sheet, of course, when I originally planted these.) Crocosmia with roots
Crocosmia root details A closer view of the stolons and cormels. The latter don't seem to produce flowering stems directly - one is clearly visible at the centre left, while another is just visible poking through the soil in the top left-hand corner.


For the first time this year I managed to germinate some Lantana seeds, and grew a handful of plants from these. I had no idea how these would turn out, but these were the first flowers. Seed-grown Lantana
Dahlia flowers Two-up for the Dahlia now.


A lot of these toadstools appeared in the front garden in late September. Toadstools in front garden
Dahlia and Lupin  
More toadstools, and Cyclamen, in the back garden. Toadstools and Cyclamen in the back garden
Patio from above Part of the patio, from the bedroom window.
At one point I excavated this pink Oxalis specimen (O corymbosa) with its root system. With the corymbs at various points down the main root I can understand why some gardeners consider this plant an annoying weed. (On the credit side, this plant is pretty and, provided you leave it alone, I've never known it get out of hand.) <i>Oxalis corymbosa</i> with root system


Lantanas The Lantanas proved to be the triumph of the year. Still flowering, beautifully, in November!

Flower Power | 2009 | 2013 | Primulas | Wisley 22/4/03

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