Garden Bloggers Foliage day: a Different Tack

Thanks to Christina for hosting this monthly meme, which encourages us to notice the foliage in our gardens as well as the blooms and appreciate that foliage is the glue which helps to stick our gardens together. I hope she will forgive me for taking a slightly different approach today!

IMG_2891I set out with camera in hand to record examples of foliage this afternoon but was not drawn to the patterns and textures and colours this time but more to the excess of it – something that has become increasingly noticeable in our years here as the garden becomes shadier and shadier. Conscious that we may not be as agile in the future I am keen that potential problems are nipped in the bud or, more accurately, lopped in the trunk, and when we left for our two sleeps in Surrey the wild cherry I had planted at the far end of the woodland in 2000 was on its way out, making access to the ash (planted at the same time) easier, as it will meet the same fate. Immediately, the borders to the right of the cherry regained some of the light they have been lacking – RESULT! Unfortunately the shredder, just over a year old, refused to co-operate and there are still two piles of leaves and branches blocking my rambles.

GBFD.Aug14Down by the greenhouses and cutting beds the mile-a-minute vine continues to encroach over next door’s fence at a rate of two miles a minute and needs to be cut back for the umpteenth time this year – but the upside is that when this neighbour watered the tomatoes while we were away in Glasgow he realised just how much of a nuisance it was and intends to do something about it – hurrah!

IMG_2894On a happier note, foliage of the nearby squash shows how well the plants are growing, now beginning to cling to the upright support they were given to keep them from running rampant along the ground – AND there are finally flower buds on Ammi visnaga atop the luxuriant feathery foliage that I have been admiring for weeks:

GBFD.Aug14.2I have a foliage dilemma, however, on the later sown sweet peas which are trained up the dead Viburnum – lots of foliage, but NO FLOWERS! Did I pinch them out? I know I did on the earlier sown ones but I really can’t remember whether these were similarly nipped….

IMG_2888I have already swept up some fallen leaves form the paths and I guess this will becoming a regular task by the time September’s GBFD comes around as autumn really stakes a claim on the proceedings. In the meantime, to make up for the lack of more interesting foliage in the rest of the post I thought I would finish by including this pleasing combination of unknown pulmonaria with our favourite persicaria, ‘Red Dragon’:

IMG_2893

 

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19 Responses to Garden Bloggers Foliage day: a Different Tack

  1. Pauline says:

    Your Red Dragon is beautiful and contrasts beautifully with the pulmonaria. You will be glad if your neighbour keeps his promise regarding the mile a minute vine, they should come with a government health warning!
    I’m sure all your plants near the two trees you are bringing down will appreciate the extra light. It’s amazing how shrubs and trees grow without you really noticing until all of a sudden drastic cut backs are needed, very sensible to do it while you are fully able.

    • Cathy says:

      The other trees I planted in the woodland have not grown as densely so aren’t a problem (yet!) – but these two will still leave a gap that will need something to fill it….. 😉 . I was amazed at how much light was reclaimed when just the cherry was lopped – and the nearest border is a bit dry so will now get more direct rain as well as light 🙂

  2. pbmgarden says:

    Cathy, that Ammi visnaga is certainly interesting. What color will the flowers be?

  3. bittster says:

    Trees have such a wide effect on what’s planted around them. Even though I have a border planted well away from a line of maples everything growing there leans away. ” C’mon guys you have plenty of sun, straighten up!” I tell them but they just don’t listen.
    The amni looks awfully interesting , and that Pulmonaria still looks springtime fresh!

  4. Christina says:

    Perfect Cathy, not too alternative at all. Thanks for being a regular contributor to GBFD. The mile a minute is a dreadful thug, good your neighbour will do something about the problem.

  5. What gorgeous foliage! Much more colorful than what I have to offer right now. Beautiful! 🙂

  6. Anna says:

    Good news on the neighbour front Cathy. Sometimes seeing things from a different perspective helps. The ammi is just as fascinating at the just before stage as it is when it’s in flower.

    • Cathy says:

      The m-a-m is mostly over the back of his pigeon loft so he doesn’t really see much of it – and certainly didn’t realise how much it tries to encroach on our side. I look forward t the ammi flowering too as I have heard people say they prefer it to majus. ps the tithonia that you recommended is also just coming into bud

  7. Cathy says:

    The Ammi visnaga looks really interesting Cathy. Would look gorgeous in a vase I bet! 😉 Love the Red Dragon. 🙂

    • Cathy says:

      I have not grown this Ammi before, but it is part of a Which? Gardening trial comparing it with A majus and orlaya in terms of their attraction to insects. The others started flowering weeks ago and the majus is long since over.

  8. You’ve captured the dynamics of a real garden with twists and turns and too much shade and too little shade and vines that grow two miles per minute and shredders that break down after you’ve cut stuff down.
    A very interesting post. Thank you.

  9. Oh dear! You’re making me realise we must bite the bullet and fell our ash tree. While we deliberate, it’s getting even bigger! It may not be something we can manage ourselves, though. Well done to you! We had a similar experience years ago, with next door’s mile-a-minute. We were constantly having to cut it back, till he decided to get rid of it. We now have a nice brick wall, furnished with two climbers, flanking a chiminea and a pair of tealight wall sconces – a much more attractive feature! The Ammi looks so beautiful! And a nice colourful ending to your post, too!

    • Cathy says:

      Realising that there may come a time when I might not be able to manage the garden was one of the triggers for the poem – although there is, of course, a big difference between cutting down trees and weeding and planting but I certainly don’t take my current fitness and health for granted

  10. A lovely ramble, thanks for sharing.D

  11. I’m with you Cathy, foliage isn’t always so great, the British climate makes it green but sometime the green can be a bit over whelming, glad the trees came down with no bother and the m-a-m will be curtailed, still love your red dragon, Frances

    • Cathy says:

      Would you like to see if the Red Dragon likes your garden too, Frances – shall I send you some?

      • thank you very much Cathy and if it’s a no vote then yes please,
        if there is anything I can send you please say, even if it’s a yes vote, if I sell I would hope whoever buys will enjoy continuing the garden but doubt it as not many people garden here, Frances

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