Garden Bloggers Blooms Day: Mum’s the Word!


Knowing we would be away on the 15th of the month, when Carol at May Dreams hosts Garden Bloggers Blooms Day and where garden bloggers can host links to their own blooming blogs, I had taken appropriate photos of our own blooms a couple of days in advance of the date. However, on our way up to my Mum’s I decided it would be more appropriate to feature the blooms in her garden instead; this suggestion was treated with more than a little derision by the Golfer. Admittedly. Mum struggles not just with the wind and salt and excess rain, but with very shallow slatey soil, an increase in infirmity, a decrease in will and a lack of availability of local help, but she does still retain her interest in plants and is always delighted to see new things flowering.

In the past we have invariably visited around Easter and again in August, so coming in June is a break with tradition and it was interesting to travel up at a different time, catching the rhododendrons and azaleas en route for a change. Surveying my Mum’s garden this morning there was perhaps less colour amongst the wind-blown weeds than there would be in August, but it was nevertheless interesting to inspect what there was. I was pleased to see some of this unnamed hardy geranium, brought from their old garden and of which I have a clump (featured in the blog header, with Sarah Bernhardt), and also some of the centaura which is doing so well in my garden at the moment. I don’t think I share any of the astrantia (centre) with my Mum, but it shows how tough and uncomplaining it is as it has popped up in several places here.


Also popping up is the almost ubiquitous ‘Welsh’ poppy, of which both yellow and orange have appeared sneaking up here with other plants from the previous garden. There was quite a clump of kniphofia, almost over, which seems odd as not only it is something I have had no success with myself it seems almost too early, particularly considering how late the spring is. Not so unusual, though, was the hebe which seems to be in flower whatever time we visit, including when we came at Christmas last year. The aquilegia look almost incongruous amidst the sea of green in the most overgrown part of the garden, but again it proves just how obliging they can be. It is surrounded by wild yellow irises and will be joined later in the year by hogweed, which I will no doubt be assigned to dig out.


Knowing my garden is already fairly (understatement!) well-stocked with plants, Mum will be surprised to find I shall be requesting the addition of something from hers – some of her white polemonium, which happily self seeds around here, along with its blue neighbour.

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15 Responses to Garden Bloggers Blooms Day: Mum’s the Word!

  1. Cathy I am surprised seeing the knipofia in flower, mine are not even in bud yet, you might not see the rhododendrons another June everyone keeps saying they are late this year, a slatey soil that’s hard, much worse than my peaty soil, interesting the difference being so much further south as our yellow iries are not out yet, your mum sounds like she does well under the circumstances, thanks for showing, have a nice time, Frances

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Frances – these kniphofia seem to a particularly early variety, as Mum had them from a local garden and they are usually this early

      • Cathy I had to smile on the bus today as I saw kniphofia flowering in a garden on the bus in and on the bus home a big clump in another garden, I hadn’t before realised different ones flower are different times, I think I will look for some early flowering to extend the season as it does grow well here, thanks, Frances

  2. I have never seen white polemonium. If I were visiting I’d take back some of those yellow iris with me.

  3. Angie says:

    Cathy, I can’t believe the Kniphofia has flowered already either! I have a small clump of this but can’t make my mind up about it, if you know what I mean.
    It’s been nice visiting your mums garden so thank you for sharing with us. My white polemonium is about to flower for the first time since I bought it 2 years ago! Enjoy your visit!

    • Cathy says:

      It seems to be a variety that is common around here – and Mum thinks it is actually later than usual! Great to have your polemonium flowering

  4. Nell Jean says:

    I believe that the early or late bloom of South African plants like Kniphofia and Agapanthus have more to do with rainfall. Last year mine did not bloom until August. This year, with ample rain, they are blooming in June.

  5. I haven’t seen some of these flowers where I live in upstate New York, where (I suspect) it gets a bit colder than it gets for you. Our irises are just about done – I literally got my last bloom today, just so I could post a picture. Our rhododendrons finished up in the last week, too.

  6. croftgarden says:

    A fascinating post, your Mum is really doing well with her garden. Kniphofias are one of my garden stars and do not look incongruous in a seaside garden. Polemonium (white and blue) is fortunately quite well behaved, whilst aquilegias and astrantia hang on and have to be nurtured, but will only grow in certain parts of the garden. It is surprising what can grow in our island gardens, the problem is trying to discover what.
    Enjoy your holiday – the weather forecast is making outrageous promises about sunshine and light winds!

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Christine – so far so good re the weather. Yes, one can easily see in the local gardens which plants will thrive

  7. Anna says:

    Your mum has some lovely flowers. Why is it that all the Welsh poppies that arrive uninvited in my garden are the yellow ones – never ever an orange one! Enjoy your visit Cathy.

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