…so let’s start with one of them that is, Rosa ‘Princess Alexandra of Kent’ on a stem accidentally broken off when I was tying in a nearby clematis. It certainly proves that it pays to study the plants in our garden closely as I found that not only does it have the most exquisite fragrance but its petals all have a deep scallop in them, creating the effect of even more petals. Checking on other roses, some have a hint of this too, but nowhere near the extent of this particular rose – and it’s not something I have particularly noticed before. I am surprised that it is not mentioned in David Austin’s description of it, as to me it is a real feature, as is the fact the buds start off a dark coral colour before magically transforming to true pink once they open fully: a truly enchanting rose.
Definitely not pretty is the apparent return of mildew on Busy Lizzies (below left), after enjoying 5 or 6 years of new resistant varieties – I have not heard it mentioned anywhere yet but this is clearly and sadly what it is. I am not sure what has happened to a number of my seed-sown zinnias (right) either but I am confident it is not slug damage. I have made a very late second sowing but will, I think, just have to accept that there will be fewer zinnias gracing the cutting beds this year.
It’s my own fault as I tend not to enter the fruit cage between early season mulching or feeding until fruit is ripening, but there is now sawfly on the redcurrants, munching their way through the leaves. I did use a neem oil drench over winter the year before last, but forgot last year. Usually, the fruit is not too badly affected by the leaf damage and I will make an effort in the next day or two to pick off what I can to limit any further damage.
You might want to close your eyes and miss this next one out and admittedly I too feel like shedding a tear as I gaze at this, the Lanky Lodger on his way to the bin…a very sorry sight indeed…
I could say he was on his last legs, gradually disintegrating, but he has spent a lifetime sitting down, which might explain the lack of muscle as he has never used them. The Golfer certainly looked at me aghast when he saw the above picture, bemoaning he would have no-one to wave to when he went for a walk around the garden, and I did briefly consider if there was any way he (the lanky Lodger, not the Golfer) could be revived but no, it was only ever going to be temporary installation because of the way he was constructed. I would like to do something else similar in due course, but with just a chickenwire framework, perhaps.
The last two of my six for Jon the Propagator’s weekly meme are on a more cheerful note, with the first of this year’s seed-sown blooms in the cutting beds, Calendula ‘Sunset Buff’, the half-open flower cleverly (the variety, not my photography) showing off the contrasting obverse and reverse of the petals at the same time, and the first dahlia, ‘Happy Single Juliet’ – not the most perfect bloom, but a bloom all the same.
Who let lanky go like that,
Should get a swanky!
The first dahlia…wishing you many more to fill your summer with happy color!
Yes, once the dahlias start there will be no stopping them until the first frosts – such flower power!
Oh my! Lanky Lodger is . . . creepy!
Is this mildew a new sort that is now attacking the new sorts of Busy Lizzie? I was never really clear on how bad that disease was. I remember that Busy Lizzie was unavailable for a while, and then supposedly new cultivars became available. However, the new sorts seemed to be the same as the old sorts. They were labeled only by color or as a mix, but without cultivar names. No one explained if there really was a difference, but we assumed that the new sorts were resistant to the disease.
Just as you say, I think, Tony, although I am going to check with a different supplier and see if it could have just been the variety I bought – I have not heard it mentioned anywhere yet
Lanky Lodger was very disconcerting on first glance! I love that new-to-me Calendula. Congratulations on your first dahlia bloom – all I have is foliage thus far.
When do you expect your dahlias to start blooming? I was really pleased to seen the calendula like this, as I have never really noticed the contrast before
I have no idea what a Busy Lizzie is, sounds more like a cocktail than a flower, but your photo makes me sad….It only took 4 days for the zinnia seeds I planted last weekend to pop out of the ground, so fingers crossed we both get loads of late summer blooms! And that calendula photo is just wonderful!!!
BLs are avery common bedding plant, Chris, proper name Impatiens – they are normally very floriferous and forgiving but periodically succumb to mildew which just wipes them out and they become unavailable for a few years until resistant varieties can be developed
I lost half of the Busy Lizzy plug plants that I bought recently, but I think that was my fault as I rushed to pot them up for outside. I thought that they either got sun-burnt (in a rare moment) or more likely the nights were too cold. Luckily I saved half of the tray and have it in the greenhouse at the moment.
Don’t blame yourself Rosie, as mildew will just appear from nowhere and the plants will collapse – best to check your others too…
I’m sorry to heat that your plants are being attacked. Poor Lanky! he does seem to have given up. But you have some lovely flowers and I am sure your garden is still gorgeous.
Thanks – I do like quirky things in the garden though, so need to come up with some new ideas!
I shall look forward to seeing what you do.
Ha! So do I, as inspiration is currently absent!
That’s a pretty calendula. None of the seeds I have sown have appeared. A shame about the impatiens, so far mine seem to be okay.
Strange about your calendula – will you try another sowing? Hope your impatiens continue to be OK
Your rose Princess Alexandra of Kent is gorgeous with so many ruffles and frills. Also like your Calendula, super colouring front and back of the petals.Sorry to hear about other problems though, hope you soon manage to sort them out.
Yes, the rose is amazing, and seems to be benefitting from increased light after our tree lopping in recent years
The demise of your zinnias and bizzie lizzies is sad, as is that of the lanky lodger! I have lost lots of freshly planted annuals to slugs this year… But that Calendula is so pretty!
Sorry to hear about your slug damage – here they have not been much in evidence so far, thankfully. Some things are just out of our control, aren’t they?
This year has the been terrible, but I think I prefer the damp weather to a drought year!
And I would agree with you!
Gardening seems to be more of a battle every year, mildew in Busy Lizzies again is such a shame.