Who’s a Silly Girl Then….?


….’Ellen Picotee’ is! Doesn’t she realise it is now August and hellebores flower in early spring? Her appearance was a complete and utter surprise this morning when I paused in my morning ramble to admire the foliage in the woodland edge border; admittedly, she is quite a young thing, a plug plant from 2012 I think, but she is definitely a little confused! It’s not as if it is just one flower either, as there are at least three other buds waiting their turn. The photo doesn’t adequately show off the full daintiness of the petals, with the hint of frilliness which gives her the ‘picotee’ description but also a dusting of apple green on their edges (tilting your screen may make this more apparent). What a treat!

CIMG1878In the woodland edge border I was particularly admiring the structure of the persicaria, pulmonaria, epimedium and Hellebore argutifolius, the latter only just appearing at the top of the picture but which has looked absolutely stunning all year and deserves a picture on its own which will be rectified in due course. The range of colours and shapes and heights in this border certainly prove that gardens do not always need flowers to be attractive or of interest.

Like Frances at Island Threads I am beginning to get a backlog of photos, so I would like to share the changing faces of Clematis ‘Pastel Blue’ and Fuchsia ‘Swingtime’. The clematis is not fully open but watching the progression of the leaf-like buds has been fascinating, whilst the profusion of buds on the fuchsia have undergone an amazing transformation from their likeness to Chinese paper lanterns to the dancing girls they become when fully open. Very nice!


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10 Responses to Who’s a Silly Girl Then….?

  1. Liz says:

    Hi Cathy,

    Last year I had Hellebores blooming into July too… But then last year was much cooler and wetter, so it’s very strange that you have one blooming! Can’t complain really; Hellebores are always welcome 🙂 I think I’ll have to go check on mine now… I know they’re very leafy at the moment, and clearly enjoying their corner.

    I love the lantern type Clematis’, and I think I need more in my garden, at the moment I only have ‘willy’ which blooms early and have always had my eye on the purples too or the smaller, autumn bloomers.

    • Cathy says:

      I am certainly not complaining about this bloomer, Liz – I love hellebores whatever the time of year as even
      now their leaf structure is a welcome addition to the woodland edge borders. After I read your comment I went to do a quick recce myself to see if I could find any others flowering as I think I had a collection of 4 or 5 different ‘Ellens’ which were all small plugs when I had them, but no more surprises.. 😉 I think the smaller flowered clematis are not as well known as their bigger cousins which is a shame.

  2. Anna says:

    I don’t think that any of my hellebores are out of synch but must check forthwith. It’s happened in the past here with new plants but they soon settle down. What’s that most attractive pulmonaria in your woodland edge border Cathy? It looks most familiar 🙂

  3. Annette says:

    That’s the great thing about gardening: It never fails to surprise, provoke, entertain, make us laugh or cry (unlike any other hobby really)…very emotional come to think of it. Nice your changing faces 🙂

  4. I agree that one of the things I appreciate the most about gardening, and your point as well, is that it never fails to surprise and delight.

  5. thanks for the link Cathy, I’m glad you posted the bud progression of your plants I especially like the clematis it is so delicate and beautiful, weird about the hellebore but enjoy, Frances

    • Cathy says:

      You are welcome, Frances – and after all, links are how I came to your blog and others. I am pleased this clematis is looking so happy as it was moved quite early on this year as it had been starting to climb into a ceanothus where one of the hot borders is now. When the ceanothus came out it had to come out too!

  6. Snap! My Helleborus niger has also just pushed up a flower. Nothing at all during the winter but in the last week or so a flower bud has opened.

    • Cathy says:

      And a friend and I found one flowering in her garden yesterday too – perhaps every gardener with hellebores should go out and have a look in case they have one flowering too! Thanks for dropping in, Phil.

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