End of Month View: How I Love my Coat of Many Colours

As recent posts have suggested the garden is awash with colour and abundance, all the shades of Joseph’s coat and more, and generally a few weeks ahead of last year’s position at the end of May. It is useful to be able to compare from month to month and year to year on this blog, so this End of Month View that Helen, the Patient Gardener, hosts is a useful way of doing this. Do follow the link her to blog and find other links to what is happening at then end of May in different gardens around the world. Text today will be brief, but do have a look at the map to see how the views fit into the bigger picture.

IMG_2202Above is the view we see the from the kitchen windows, now dominated by greenery and roses – Danse de Feu on the pergola and Munstead  Wood in the big circular tub. Just out of the picture to the left the first few flowers are out on Rambling Rector and to the right Clematis montana ‘Marjorie’ is strutting her stuff on the old apple tree:

May14.1Below, the streamside area is beginning to be cut back now the narcissi are finished but will take a few weeks before it looks less rough. Now that we have put the stream on a timer I shall be mortaring the rocks back on the bank that was relaid and will need some extra turf to finish it off too. Meanwhile, the woodland in the right hand picture has quietened down now the wood anemones, bluebells and wild garlic have finished.

May14.4The main herbaceous borders, rapidly filling out and with colour splashes courtesy of allium, astrantia and aquilegia (all the ‘a’s), with the pots of hostas in the foreground:

IMG_2207The clematis colonnade is turning into a the successful feature I had hoped for, now that the clematis are settling in and the geranium at their feet are filling out – G.Dragon Heart and Johnson’s Blue are in full flow, whilst C Josephine is at her peak on the second pillar on the left.

IMG_2208I have trimmed the edges of the path through the woodland edge border, seen here from both directions, to reduce wet-leg syndrome the next time it rains:

may14.2The bold borders are still looking more ‘hot’ than ‘bold’ and there is hardly space to add the anticipated bold pinks and purples when the borders are crammed with geums, hemerocallis and crocosmia which of course are all bigger than they were last year:

May14.3The blue & white borders are equally full and the various clumps of centaurea and tradescantia will need liposuction as newer and possibly more favourable neighbours take their turn at filling out:

May14.5The rose garden is well and truly stunning, with Zéphirine Drouhin and Guinée about to be joined by Blush Noisette – all very lovely and, of course, smelling delightful. Another example of things settling down again after change and upheaval:

IMG_2215Retracing steps towards the house and bypassing the species snowdrop border this month I am astonished at the fullness of the hedge border, created following removal of the D****’s plant barely a year ago; the picture on the left shows the area first planted up twelve months ago and the right as it is today, the Hydrangea arborescens, Astrantia ‘Shaggy’ and Luzula nivea clearly loving it here, as I do in my garden of many colours. No wonder I like to ramble in it as much as I do ……


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28 Responses to End of Month View: How I Love my Coat of Many Colours

  1. jenhumm116 says:

    There’s so much to see and all of it stunning. Those geums are gorgeous – what a colour!

    • Cathy says:

      Aren’t they just?! And when I planted most of them, because one of the beds was completely new, I planted in threes (cheap and cheerful bare rooted) as one is ‘told’ to do, so each clump is even bigger than it would have been with single plants…

  2. Helen Johnstone says:

    You are right a coat of many colours. I like May as everything looks so fresh and I don’t think that is so as the summer goes on. Thanks for joining in again

    • Cathy says:

      And probably even more so this year as spring was relatively early – I fear the roses may run out of steam before summer is really here, so I better just enjoy them while I can!

  3. rusty duck says:

    The clematis colonnade looks fabulous! I love the rustic red brick path through it too.

    • Cathy says:

      Oh thanks Jessica – but I was a bit puzzled though as the path through it is actually grey ‘cobbles’ (Bradstone carpet stones) although the path across the front is in brindle paviors.

  4. Pauline says:

    Your roses and clematis are certainly happy in your garden, the perfume must be wonderful! Love your hot border, so colourful already and it will just get better and better.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Pauline. It is good to have some of the clematis flowering again – Princess Diana is in bud now after a two year break so I look forward to that. I keep meaning to check back on the blog and see how long the geums usually flower for

  5. I love your roses, Cathy, especially “Munstead Wood”. What a wonderful colour. Your whole garden is looking amazing. It all seems to flow effortlessly from one thing to another – always something in flower. And you’re definitely allowed to ramble to your heart’s content! I’m beginning to share with you the frustration of where to put desired new plants, when all the borders are so crammed!

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks for your kind comments – it is good when it becomes clear that modifications have worked out OK. I am beginning to keep an eye open for plants that were only there to fill a space or that I never really liked anyway – not that I want lots of new plants, but better to have plants that I DO like and which earn their keep one way or another! I have only had M Wood a couple of years, but this year she is looking a bit less ‘floppy’ than previous years – I still intend to put some sort of discreet support round the stems just to make sure.

  6. So many wonderful things Cathy, all flowering their socks off for you. Your clematis colonnade is really coming in to its own, very pretty, and that rose Munstead Wood is a glorious colour. My inherited roses all have black spot, so I don’t think I will be planting them in the garden, but I do think I will be adding some roses, which is not something I ever thought I would say…

    • Cathy says:

      And it doesn’t seem that long ago that I was adding roses for the first time, probable after realising how stunning the incumbent Rambling Rector was, despite only being in flower a month or so. I have to say that most of my roses tend to have black spot to some degree or other, but it doesn’t seem to do them any real harm somehow. Just think, where will you start deciding which roses to choose…?

  7. Chloris says:

    It is all looking lovely. Marjorie is fantastic. I love it when the roses all start to come out, they are a joy.
    Your geum is really eye- catching. Is that Totally Tangerine?
    What a lovely day today to be out there enjoying it all.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Chloris. I was circumnavigating Marjorie today, noticing the different colours – she has more dark pink streaks this year. How do she do it – and all those flowers too! Totally tangerine is in there, but most of the colour will be good old Mrs Bradshaw. Today has indeed been a pleasant day and much warmer and sunnier than yesterday.

  8. croftgarden says:

    As ever the garden is lush and floriferous and whilst I love the plant combinations and different elements my eye is always drawn to the assorted ephemera. I was totally distracted by the metal bird and have spent far too long trying to work out whether it is something South American and primitive, a jungle fowl or some rare breed of chicken!

    • Cathy says:

      🙂 I had to scroll through the post to check for metal birds after your comment as there are several, all different assorted ‘breeds’, but I think it is only the first picture where one is in evidence. I believe it is/was a cockerel (primitive, jungle or rare breed, not sure which) who has been involved in too much fighting as he has lost a lot of his tail feathers. Yes, assorted ephemera, that sums up the essence of the garden I suppose….

  9. your garden is very lush and lovely Cathy with lots of flowers, the hedge border has filled out nicely and quite quickly, time to relax on one of your many seats and enjoy all your hard work, Frances

  10. Anna says:

    Oh isn’t May the best of months Cathy. Now does ‘Munstead Wood’ smell as good as she looks?
    Such an exquisite colour. I’ve been tempted to purchase her for some time. The woodland edge border looks a most shady retreat for warm days.

  11. bittster says:

    I also thought at first that the colonnade path was paved in brick, but looking back now I can see the pavers. It looks great, and the geraniums make such nice socks and boots for the clematis.
    The bold border also looks great. Good luck finding room to tweak your color palette, things look awfully packed in there.
    The whole garden looks wonderful. I love may… Now June! 🙂

  12. Sally says:

    Everything is so beautiful! Your roses are, indeed, stunning. I checked out your map. Very nice layout. You’re ahead of us by several weeks…..our Irises are just opening and the Day Lilies aren’t doing anything…….ah….the things to look forward to!

    • Cathy says:

      Thank you Sally – I am sure the roses have never been as floriferous before 🙂 I have noticed the odd bud on the day lilies but some way off opening yet. Doesn’t it make life interesting, never knowing exactly when things are going to flower from year to year?! 😉

  13. Christina says:

    I do enjoy all the structures you have created, it is quite Chelsea in one way but better planated for all year interest.

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