In case you think I am cheating, this is NOT a Six on Saturday post, to link with Jon the Propagator’s weekly meme, but an inventory of what is blooming in the garden at the moment! I was rapidly running out of days in November and this seemed the only way to squeeze in a monthly record, something I have been doing in one format or another since October 2012. However, I shall still link to Jon’s blog, risking expulsion from the SosS community for taking extreme liberties!
As our house faces directly onto the street we have no front garden, but there is usually colour to be had in two baskets with a few additional pots in the summer. The summer baskets contain petunias and in winter there are usually pansies or violas with miniature narcissi to follow; this year I have added a winter flowering heather, not a favourite of mine by any stretch of the imagination, but the violas looked ‘flat’ on their own and needed some height for support. The heather certainly maks a difference and reduced to £1 they make an effective and economical partner for the bargain violas from Aldi.
In the garden, some pots of bulbs are overplanted with cultivated Bellis perennis (below), seemingly recovered from their dose of daisy rust, whilst others are waiting for Aldi’s polyanthus, usually available towards the end of January.
Both bellis and violas will tick over during the winter and peak in late spring, depending on the winter, which so far has been mild with just the lightest of frosts a few weeks ago. This means not only that the dahlias are still flowering, but that a number of annuals are still hanging on and maximising their season. Despite their healthy foliage, I did remove some of the dahlias this week, those with no new buds evident, and theose tubers are drying out in the greenhouse.
I have no idea why these nicotiana, N elata ‘Nick’s Rose and ‘Lime Green’, have stuck it out for so long, although I don’t think they will be around for much longer:
This zinc bath of nasturtium and nearby annual Rudbeckia ‘Irish Eyes’ don’t look as if they have any plans to stop flowering, an amazing feat for the self-seeded nasturtium which have received no attention whatsoever, thriving on complete and utter neglect:
On the perennial front, I am amazed to have astrantia blooming towards the end of November, several plants having reflowered after being cut back earlier in the season. This is ‘Star of Beauty’ and (I think) ‘Ruby Wedding’:
Fresh growth and young flowers on Echinops ‘Arctic Glow’ were certainly an unexpected result of cutting back the spent earlier growth:
New for this season Anemone ‘Dainty Swan’ has proved to be a determined bloomer, flower for longer than its taller and thuggish cousins:
Another fairly recent introduction has been outstanding, blooming from early summer or possibly even late spring and showing no sign of stopping – Erodium manescovii:
I am still enjoying the view of Rosa ‘Lady Emma Hamilton’ from the kitchen windows;‘Nathalie Nypels’ is in bloom too, with the occasional flower on other roses as well.
Dependable persicaria are still at it too, albeit sporting very scruffy foliage. Both P ‘Blackfield’ and ‘Inverleith’ are in the streamside border which desperately needs a complete winter overhaul to remove both exuberance and couch grass – not a job to be anticipated with any pleasure, being a narrow border with a pergola along the length of it, between the paved area and the stream.
I recently removed the Campanula portenschlagiana that edged (and self-seeded into) part of the stone circle by the blue & white borders, so this patch in the raised bed outside the kitchen window is the only clump I have now, but it is unlikely to be turning up its toes yet and flowers reliably off and on throughout the year:
Later season blooms include this unnamed hardy chrysanthemum that came from blogging friend Chloris a couple of years ago – what does it think it is doing coming into bud so late in the year? I don’t really understand the mentality of the species…
More seasonal but nevertheless rather earlier than I would like it to be, is Viburnum bonantense ‘Dawn’ which I featured in close-up on Wednesday – sporadic blooms at this time would be acceptable but, unlike any other year, it seems to be in full bloom, with its pleasing fragrance readily detectable in this mild November. Whether it will continue to flower over the next few months after this relatively early showing is as yet an unknown.
And I nearly forgot to include the long-flowering salvias, clockwise from top left ‘Neon, ‘Amistad’, ‘Phyllis Fancy’ and an out-of-focus ‘Royal Bumble’. I shall be replacing the sprawling ‘Neon’ (and ‘Hot Lips’, which was photographed but inadvertently omitted) with well-branched cuttings next year, and trialling mulching the new ‘Amistad’, which I have never yet been able to overwinter.
The Coop is still home to some nerines in bloom, those below being N bowdenii ‘Albivetta’, and the flamboyant fantasy chrysanthemums, C ‘Salhouse Joy’ and ‘Kiyomi No Meisui’:
There are probably a few more floral scraps I haven’t mentioned in this November round-up and I am trying to ignore the buds on several hellebores and the first hint of colour on a number of the witch hazels, and although I am enjoying the promise of early snowdrop Galanthus ‘Barnes’ (below) and getting excited about the emergence of green shoots in the special snowdrop border, the sight of native snowdrops pushing up in the woodland edge border is most definitely not to be expected in November. Dare I hope for a cold spell to slow things down…?