Six Things Bringing Pleasure in the Garden on Saturday

There are of course many more than six things bringing pleasure in the garden at the moment, but I am choosing a nominal six to share for Jon the Propagator‘s Saturday meme. Above are the first sunflowers, not dwarfing me as most sunfloweers would because they are the aptly named ‘Dwarf Sunspot’ variety. Below is Nigella ‘Mulberry Rose’ which I am especially delighted to have as nigella for some reason hasn’t generally done well in the garden before, but apart from these September sown plants there are also a number of white nigella blooms, distributed around the garden from a cluster of seedlings that appeared out of the blue in one of the borders, an oddity as it is some years since I last attempted to grow it, but certainy very welcome.

New to me this year is knautia, in this instance K ‘Red Knight’, which I think I bought from an open garden last year, and if this year is typical I don’t know why I haven’t ‘discovered’ it before as it is looking stunning in one of the bold borders, alongside oriental poppies and aconitum. I have recently sown seeds of Knautia ‘Melton Pastels’ for added pleasure next year:


With a few pots of lilies having been grown successfully last year and popped into the borders once the buds had formed, I have added several more varieties this year, mostly Asiatic lilies as I can be fairly confident of success with these. This is ‘Orange Ton’ in one of the bold borders:

The number of clematis in the garden has been boosted in the last couple of years by the addition particularly of a number of viticella varieties, and many of these are just coming into bloom to please not just ourselves but our garden visitors. This is ‘Margot Koster’, growing on the pergola that runs between the paved area and the stream:

The fragrance of roses has been hanging in the air on the mild and mostly dry days we and our first visitors have enjoyed this week. Frequent deadheading has kept them looking at their best, and it has been a pleasure getting acquainted with all the new additions. This is ‘Strawberry Hill’, one of a pair on a new arch which were planted as container plants in September and have certainly made themselves at home:

I hope you have as many plants bringing you pleasure this weekend as we have here. Why not pop over to Jon’s blog now and see what pleasures other bloggers are sharing today?

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19 Responses to Six Things Bringing Pleasure in the Garden on Saturday

  1. Oh I meant to ask you the name of the clematis underneath where the seagull is perched 😃 ‘Strawberry Hill’ is a stunner Cathy.

    • Cathy says:

      I am really pleased with the new clematis here as they have only been in a couple of years – the others on the pergola are a mass of bud too. And Strawberry Hill only arrived last September! Hmm, just thinking as I write, I could add a clematis to this arch to clamber amongst it…

  2. Heyjude says:

    My Asiatic lilies have suffered at the hands (or tongues) of the S&S this year. I really ought to just sling them onto the compost heap! Or perhaps grow them indoors next year. I haven’t had much success with Nigella either, so your post brings me hope.

    • Cathy says:

      I only grow lilies in pots now, Jude, as they never did well in the borders, probably because of the s&s. I keep them tucked away, all together so I can easily inspect for lily beetle, till they are in bud and then put them in the borders. However, the 4 pots I already had before this year were overwintered in the greenhouse for the first time and I don’t know yet how helpful that is – although it did mean they were repotted! No idea about the nigella but it looks as if it prefers not to be nurtured

  3. Helen Johnstone says:

    I don’t have a lot of luck with Nigella either, the only luck I have is the Nigella seed I put out for the birds which the goldfinches love. We have a baby goldfinch this year which is fab. I have had knautia before and it is good but it’s disappeared and I don’t know why, maybe it’s short lived. Will have to get some next year

    • Cathy says:

      Interestingly, the Mulberry Rose ones which I sowed last Sept were the only Autumn sown and January planted out things that survived and I am guessing that nigella just prefers a but of neglect and probably to be direct sown. I wondered if the knautia might be short-lived so it will be a learning curve for me. By the way, niger seeds are not the same as nigella, although for many years I too thought it was 😉It comes from a kind of thistle, like a teasel. I must check what a baby goldfinch looks like as we get several adults at a time so I assume they will be procreating…

  4. I’m glad your Lilies are doing well, and that the other plants have been successful, too. The Roses: wow! I’ve never tried to grow Nigella, but it’s so graceful and pretty. Your photos are lovely!

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Beth – the pink nigella seems to have a bigger flower than the more usual blue or white ones. Their seedheads will be gorgeous and I will certainly let them spread their seed around!

  5. chicu says:

    Your sunflowers are out already- what fun! Mine are still forming those tight knots that will become buds some day.

  6. tonytomeo says:

    Sunflowers look so Midwestern (which is not relevant to the West Midlands). One of the wild sunflowers is the state flower of Kansas! They are so rad!
    I grew Asiatic and at least two other types of lilies as cut flower back in 1986, but do not grow them in the garden. They do not last long as a perennial here. They bloom only one year, and perhaps a second. I do like them so. We grew a few at work because a neighbor dropped off some extra bulbs that he lacked space for. They were spectacular! I will pamper them, and hope for bloom next year.

  7. cavershamjj says:

    I can’t grow nigella for love nor money. No idea why. I think I will just scatter some seed in the summer and see what happens next year.

    • Cathy says:

      Yes, I have come to realise that indoor sowing doesn’t really suit them, although these were planted out in Jan and did survive, unlike cornflowers and California poppies

  8. Lora Hughes says:

    What a joy to see sunflowers in bloom already. I’ve been tempted by the dwarf varieties before, but didn’t realise they bloomed earlier – makes sense, doesn’t it? And knautia . . . it just adds so much, dloesn’t it?

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