Despite a long list of tasks, I have not been able to get out and get any of them done today, which is a shame, but that’s how it is; Six on Saturday was therefore achieved by a a brief photographic sojourn around the garden, picking out six of the pretties that are delighting me at the moment.
Above, in the Coop, is Hippeastrum ‘Alfresco’, now at its peak and with huge blooms that I still haven’t to take a tape measure to, but are definitely in the region of 8 or 9″ and the biggest I have ever seen on any hippeastrum here. Below is Rhododendron ‘Cheers’ (aka ‘Christmas Cheer’) which I though wasn’t going to flower this season, which can be anytime from November to April, but now has a dozen or so buds bursting open to show their frilly pink underwear:
Also in the woodland are the first of the fritillaries, F meleagris, which I am trying to build into larger colonies like the wood anemones, bluebells and wild garlic here. As other bloggers have found there is now a range of shades in evidence, from the typical plummy ones to the almost insipid whites and everything inbetween:
Over the years since I first created the woodland and added the first woodland bulbs, I have been assisting the wood anemones to spread although they are quite adept at it themselves. There is now a veritable carpet of them but last year I planted numerous offshoots under the ivy at the bottom end and it is these that have emerged and started flowering first – perhaps it is not as dry here due to less tree cover?
On the rebuilt clematis colonnade the Clematis alpina are budding up and beginning to burst; surprisingly, 6 of the 8 survived the upheaval and 6 of the viticella too, leaving me to replace only two of each. I think they will appreciate the deeper soil of the slightly raised beds which will also be better for moisture retention. This deep purple-blue one is C alpina ‘Pamela Jackman’:
At the bottom of the garden, in the working greenhouse, are the ‘Winter Sunshine’ sweet peas, rapidly growing taller in the spring sunshine as temperatures and light levels rise; I was thrilled to find 3 or 4 buds appearing in the last week or two and wondered if we might see a March bloom this year; that now seems unlikely, but nevertheless I am not imagining the hint of colour of the in-focus bud in the background…
So that’s my Six Pretties on Saturday, and I am grateful to Jon The Propagator for providing the platform to do so – pop over to his blog to see his six and links to those of other bloggers