It definitely feels like winter: I am grateful for the odd hour of sunshine, but it has mainly been dark and wet, and Friday from mid morning was glorious for a few hours, then back to poor light, mizzle and cold. I feel like setting up a vigil through the night to catch the cat(s) that have chosen to use my beds where there are emerging bulbs, for you know what. They are now strewn with every sort of thorny stick I could find. If anyone knows proven ways of deterring cats, please let me know.
Jon the Propagator has a collection of winter beaten plants, and tips, and also a fancy new module system for seedlings which looks interesting. I'll be looking into those Butaseed modules soon, for all those veg seeds I hope to grow.1. There is nothing quite like the low winter sun shining on Japanese Grass Hakonechloa macra Albostriata, to get me reaching for my camera.
|Geranium robustum Silver Cloak|
2. I admired this plant in Beth Smith's garden: Foamlea. I feels such a long time ago that we visited her but it is only 18 months ago. Beth gave me a small plant, but I had obviously not given it the good drainage it needed. I felt quite bereft, and was soon trawling the internet for a grower of Geranium robustum Silver Cloak. I bought two and placed one in the front hot dry sunny garden, and one in the gravel garden. I am pleased to say that each plant is thriving, and there are a few cuttings taken as an insurance policy, and to send to Jim next spring. I love soft grey leaves, intricately divided leaves, and hardy geraniums, so this has been a great introduction to the garden this year.
3. Thanks to the generosity of Jim, the seeds he sent me of another silver hardy gernanium, are coming up nicely, and are being nurtured. They could be G. incanum or G. harveyii and it will be interesting to compare this with Silver Cloak. According to Robin Parer. in the Plant Lover's Guide to Hardy Geraniums. G incanum is one of Silver Cloak's parents.
4. Whereas Geranium Silver Cloak is not deciduous,, many other geraniums have just melted into the ground in the last couple of weeks. I have been watching a geranium that disappears in the summer. I am happy to report that all three clumps of Geranium malviflorum luckily escaped being overplanted, or damaged during their summer dormant season, and I am very much looking forward to their spring flowering. I have learnt that they are best moved/divided just after flowering whilst they are in the green. I shall be sure to do that, and bring them closer to the edges of the borders, in between winter dormant perennials.
|Geranium malviflorum emerging in December|
5. Early to flower, this little primula reminds me of the time we visited The Vyne with my grand daughter when she chose this plant. I had wanted her to choose a plant for herself, but she wanted me to have it. Hope I can look after it and keep it healthy, and maybe one day she may want a piece.
6. I'm not sure if this plant is quite to my taste, and I can't quite work out why. I like white flowers, I like scabious, and to think this is flowering in December too. But this may not be the normal flowering period, it just seems so wrong. Scabiosa caucasica 'Perfecta Alba' might get moved a little further away, maybe it is just in the wrong place and not in harmony with the rest of the planting in that area. My plan this week is to work out where it will be moved to.....
I shall give it one more year, and then....after all with so little space, and so many plants to try, I now am going round the garden removing the ones that are iffy.