Six on Saturday (31 July 2021)

Well, the heatwave seems like a distant memory. The garden certainly needed the rain but it could have done without the gusty winds of yesterday. However, everything is still standing, apart from a Verbena out the front that I need to prop up later today. The Zinnias and Dahlias are still doing okay, although the latter are dragging their roots rather; there’s not a sign of a flower bud on any of them. Despite the slugs and snails having an extra glide to their slide after all the rain, the Zs and Ds have remained largely unmunched thus far and I wonder whether that’s because they have been shunned in favour of my first Six on Saturday (if you have your sunglasses to hand you may want to put them on now…)

1. Nasturtiums! Orange ones. I’ve never grown Nasturtiums before but I’ll definitely be growing them again. This one is making its way up through the Sambucus. They were all plonked in pots with the tomatoes, which may have been slightly foolhardy as they seem vigorous enough without a weekly seaweed feed. Unlike the gourmet gastropods I’ve yet to sample the edible flowers or leaves. Talking of leaves…

2. Lamium maculatum ‘White Nancy’ was planted in the spring to help brighten up a shady spot and it’s doing rather well. It’s produced the odd white flower but the foliage is the main attraction.

3. Next up is ‘Compassion,’ a climbing rose that was planted last summer. I’m a bit worried it’s going to be a tad too rampant for the spot I chose for it. The other week I made an effort to implement some order, adding wires to train it artfully around the corner of the shed towards the door. However, I fear getting inside will soon become tricky (not helped by the monster Montana that I’ve trained above the door). It looks rather pretty though.

4. As do the Phloxes. This one has been in bloom for a few weeks now.

5. Right, time for a plant that was deemed a bitter disappointment a year ago. Grown from seed, Rudbeckia hirta ‘Cherry Brandy’ took forever to flower back in 2020 and when one of them finally produced a solitary miserable looking bloom I wondered why I’d bothered. I thought I’d pulled them all up but apparently not. Left in a pot over the winter, they’re looking rather splendid at the moment, although my camera doesn’t quite capture the true colour of the petals. They’re a lot darker in reality.

In fact I’m so taken with them you’re getting two photos. And they’re not the only Rudbeckias to have survived the winter…

6. ‘Daisies Mixed’ has also made a comeback. These plucky plants, also sown from seed back in 2020, flowered all the way through to January before dying back. It would be great if they did the same again.

They were my Six on Saturday. For more Sixes on Saturday, from all around the world, take a look at the site of the chap who started it all over at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com.

Six on Saturday (24 July 2021)

By ‘eck it’s been hot. Thankfully, Mrs OMAHGT and I had last week off, enjoying days out in Killerton, Exmouth and Teignmouth in Devon, as well as Sherborne Castle Gardens in Dorset. The odd frozen dessert may have been consumed (Snickers ice cream, cider sorbet and a Solero in case you’re interested). In between gallivanting and consuming rapidly melting frozen confections there was time for a spot of gardening. After much dithering I finally committed to planting out the Zinnias and Dahlias (most of them have remained unnibbled so far) and on Friday it was bye-bye standard buddleia and hello standard Ligustrum japonicum ‘Texanum’ (or Japanese/Waxleaf Privet). I’ve been a bit free and easy with the watering during this heatwave but hopefully the rain in the night and the showers forecast for today will replenish all of the water butts. Anyway, time for Six on Saturday.

1. One lot of plants that haven’t minded the relentless heat have been the Lavenders. This may or may not be Hidcote, a nice compact variety, although a monster Lavender had to be given an emergency chop the other week to allow access to the front door. Talking of monster plants…

2. Behold, Linaria purpurea ‘Canon Went.’ I sowed this last year and planted several seedlings at the front of borders assuming they were a short variety (like Fairy Lights). They didn’t flower and remained short of stature. Not this year. On a par with Purple Toadflax for height and vigour, and just as popular with the bees, they’re going to have to be moved to the back of the borders come the autumn. Note to self: read seed catalogues more carefully.

3. Like the Lavenders, Sidalcea ‘Party Girl’ (Prairie mallow) has also been enjoying the sun and is doing much better than in previous years.

4. Up next, flying hedgehogs. Juncus ensifolius was plonked in the tiny wildlife pond in February and has done rather well. However, I very nearly added a quite different plant to the pond, one I already had growing in the garden…

5. This Lythrum (or Purple Loosestrife) really struggled in the south facing front garden and was accidentally dug up with a Buddleia ‘Buzz’ and plonked in a pot. It has thrived ever since, despite my shoddy pot watering regime. However, back in February I was surprised to learn it’s also sold as a pond plant.

6. And finally… Polemonium¬†‘Northern Lights.’ I’ve grown a self-seeding purple Jacob’s Ladder for many moons now, but I only became aware of this fragrant (and sterile) variety after reading a Six on Saturday by Alison Moore last year. Two plants were acquired from Bluebell Cottage Gardens Nursery in February. I’m pondering getting a purple-leaved variety called ‘Heaven Scent’ next spring.

They were my Six on Saturday. For more Sixes on Saturday, from all around the world, take a look at the site of the chap who started it all over at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com.

Six on Saturday (17 July 2021)

After a few weeks of very little gardening action (apart from a spot of dead-heading) I finally started planting some of the annuals, working late into the evening one day last week. It felt rather good and also taxed the old grey cells as I wandered around the garden, watering can in hand, trying to remember just where I’d put everything. There are some plants that I still haven’t risked plonking out in the wilds of the borders though, and that leads me to my first Six on Saturday…

1. Zinnias of various hues. I know, I know. When they reach flowerhood they should be allowed to leave the safety of the swing seat and make their own way in the world. But they look so healthy and flowery (much better than last year’s batch) I’m reluctant to allow them to leave ‘home’ and fend for themselves. Perhaps the swing seat isn’t required for sitting on this summer. There’s always the garden bench. Wait. No, that’s occupied by pots of Dahlias, a Chocolate Cosmos and a Helenium. I must accept there will be casualties and just plant them.

2. Do you ever find yourself with a plant you’d always thought you weren’t that keen on originally? I’ve never been sure about the purple berries of Callicarpa and yet I found myself ordering a standard Callicarpa bodinieri ‘Autumn Glory’ in the spring. Despite professing uncertainty about the purple fruit I’ve been channelling my inner bee and pollinating the flowers with a small paint brush as apparently you may need a few such plants to guarantee berries.

3. Next up, Crocosmia ‘Lucifer.’ A lot was pulled up last autumn (it was beginning to take over the conservatory border) but there are still quite a few plants growing here and there. When it flowers its leanings towards world domination are forgiven.

4. Growing nearby is the Hydrangea paniculata ‘Vanille Fraise.’ Another standard form, it was given its first ever prune in the spring. I’m not sure I got it completely right as some branches are a tad bare of leaf in places. However, the flowers have developed surprisingly quickly over the past few weeks. I suspect they will feature again in future SoSs.

5. Now these were a pleasant surprise. They look like Allium ‘Drumstick’ and must have been part of the mixed pack of Alliums planted late last year.

6. And finally… Ripening tomatoes! A bushy cherry variety called ‘Minibel,’ the fruit are a slightly funny colour, almost a bit pink. I tried one yesterday and I’m not sure it was totally ripe. If it was then I may have to grow a sweeter variety next year. They’re doing a lot better than my 2020 toms though.

They were my Six on Saturday. For more Sixes on Saturday, from all around the world, take a look at the site of the chap who started it all over at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com.

Six on Saturday (10 July 2021)

July, like June, seems to be racing by and I feel like I’m getting a bit behind with this and that. There are robust looking weeds/wildflowers growing here and there that need pulling up. Some of the Geraniums, Geums and Ox Eye daisies that have gone over need chopping back. And I still haven’t planted many of the annuals nor any of the Dahlias. I also need to get a move on and sow a few Sweet Williams for next year. Talking of which…

1. The Sweet Bills have flowered a lot later this year, not helped by someone taking rather a long time to get around to planting them out. They’ve also turned out to be predominantly pink thus far. Hopefully a few more varieties will make themselves known soon. They’re unfussy things and don’t seem to mind a slightly shady spot.

2. Neither do these Anemone leveillei that are growing close by. Planted back in early spring, they were so small when they arrived in the post I wasn’t totally convinced they’d make it. But behold! Flowers, although the petals seem a lot narrower than those pictured on the Interweb.

3. In the same border is this compact Hydrangea ‘Miss Belgium.’ Her blooms are at my favourite stage, when the lime green petals are just beginning to flush pink.

4. Continuing the unintentional shady-ish border Six on Saturday theme is another new plant. Back in the winter I sent off for some ‘first grade roots’ of this dwarf Alstilbe ‘Rock and Roll.’ There are three in total and I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the red-stemmed fernyesque foliage. The fluffy white flowers are proving to be more of an added bonus. It was chosen partly for its short stature and partly for the name as my wife enjoys rock and roll dancing (alas, she’s had to make do with me as a dance partner since the pandemic pandemonium). A groan-worthy flower joke can be found here.

5. Next up, Bloody Cranesbill or Geranium sanguineum, growing in a sunny spot in the garden. First acquired from that free nursery up in North Wales, it’s been split several times over the years.

6. And finally… A mere snail’s throw away from the geranium (which isn’t that far the way I throw) is this rather striking Poppy ‘Shirley Single Mixed,’ grown from a packet of free seed. I must sow the rest next year.

They were my Six on Saturday. For more Sixes on Saturday, from all around the world, take a look at the site of the chap who started it all over at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com.

Six on Saturday (3 July 2021)

Yesterday morning I awoke with a start. I had this horrible feeling I’d forgotten to do something. But what? Had I left the front door unlocked? No, I’d definitely jiggled the handle before heading up the wooden hill. Had I left the skylight windows open in the conservatory? Again, no. I remembered leaping up to grab the handle of one of them to shut it and standing on the small coffee table to reach the other one. I’d definitely put the recycling out. Ah-ha! I’d forgotten to set the alarm! Nope, that had been set. Hmm, perhaps it was nothing after all.

It was only as I was getting dressed, 20 minutes later, that it suddenly dawned on me what it was I’d forgotten to do. I hadn’t returned the Zinnias to the security of the swing seat after watering them the previous evening. I’d foolishly left them on the ground, within easy reach of the slimy plant assassins of the night.

Abandoning socks and all thoughts of bringing the milk in or putting the kettle on, I raced downstairs, unlocked the back door and bounded over to the patio, fearful of what I would find. Just the other morning I’d discovered the stalky, leafless remains of what may have been either Dahlia or Coreopsis seedlings (identification proved tricky as the label had either a) been stolen or b) had never existed in the first place). Thankfully, all was well. The Zinnias had made it through the night unnibbled. Whether they’ll fare quite so well once planted in the wilds of the borders time will tell. My home brewed garlic spray is ready to be deployed though. Anyway, after that long winded introduction, it’s time for Six on Saturday.

1. First up is Penstemon ‘True Blue,’ grown from seed. On the front of the original packet it proudly says “flowers in the first year.” Well, this has taken over two but I’m not complaining. I had two plants originally, but its sibling appears to have gone AWOL. Never mind. Hopefully, once it’s a bit bigger, I’ll be able to take some cuttings. For some reason it looks more purpley than blue in this photo.

2. I think I buy a white Ragged Robin every year. They don’t appear to self-seed in my garden, dying back over the winter never to be seen again (unlike the reddy-pink variety that self-seeds all over the wildlife border). I always vow I won’t bother again and then I see one for sale. The stems appear to have turned purple lately (the photos with green stems were taken a few weeks ago).

3. Phacelia Tanacetifolia has featured in quite few Six on Saturdays of late. I found myself with a packet of seed in the spring and gave it a go. I wish I’d sown more now. Popular with the bees, it’s often grown as a green manure apparently.

4. Another annual sown from seed this year is this Orlaya grandiflora (White Lace Flower). Alas, only a few have made it to flowerhood but I will definitely be sowing some more next spring.

5. Next up is a plant described by Sarah Raven as “a new generation foxglove.” Digitalis x ‘Foxlight Rose Ivory’ is apparently a perennial and should go on flowering for a while. It’s rather nice and and I might see if I can divide it in time.

6. And finally… An Aquilegia. Bought as a plant last autumn it’s looking rather eye-catching, despite having been trod on a few times in an attempt to get to a bird feeder.

They were my Six on Saturday. For more Sixes on Saturday, from all around the world, take a look at the site of the chap who started it all over at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com.

Six on Saturday (26 June 2021)

This month seems to be flying by and I don’t feel like I’ve achieved much gardening-wise of late. Though the forget-me-nots have been pulled up, I’ve yet to plant out most of the annuals or the dahlias. I’m not entirely sure where everything is going to go, a ‘problem’ made ever trickier after additional plants were acquired from the free nursery up in Wales last weekend (you can have a nose around the grounds of ‘the old ancestral home’ here).

Before I risk planting any of the Zinnias or Dahlias I need to brew a garlic solution to spray on them in an attempt to make their leaves less irresistible to the gourmet gastropods. At least that’s the theory. I also need to sow a few more biennials and up the aphid patrols (the little divils have discovered the few remaining stems of the beleaguered Buddleia now). It seems to have been a bad year for aphids… well, for gardeners anyway, it’s obviously proving to be a great year for the aphids themselves. One task I am managing to keep on top of (just about) is deadheading, and that leads me to my first Six on Saturday…

1. Planted last year, this standard Rosa Flower Carpet Ruby ‘Noafeuer’ has begun to burst into flower. Demure it ain’t.

2. A few years ago I gave my mum an Ox Eye Daisy or two for her wildlife border. They have seeded themselves about here there and everywhere. In my small garden I have to keep a close eye on it, pulling up seedlings every so often to keep it in check. It is lovely, though it can be prone to toppling over without any support.

3. I’m hoping this Lily will still be standing come the evening. A new fence post might be going in at the back of the border later and getting there without causing any damage isn’t going to be easy (it’s one of the reasons why I’ve delayed planting any of the annuals).

4. I certainly don’t hold out much hope for this Antirrhinum growing nearby. A survivor from last year’s batch of ‘Circus Clowns,’ I think flattenage is inevitable.

5. Next up, a Rockrose. A yellow one, growing in the south facing front garden. It’s taken quite a few years to get going but it’s doing really well now.

6. And finally… This fragrant Chandos Beauty Rose was planted in the patio bed back in December. Fingers are crossed that it does okay here as the soil is a little gravelly and dry. Some more organic matter will be added in the autumn.

They were my Six on Saturday. For more Sixes on Saturday, from all around the world, take a look at the site of the chap who started it all over at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com.

A wander around a Welsh garden (with pictures and cine film footage)

Regular readers will be aware that I often refer to ‘the old ancestral home’ in North Wales that also serves as a free plant nursery. However, pictures have been few and far between. Until now….

The old and somewhat chilly-in-the-winter house has been in the family since the 1950s. A former farm, it was run by a great aunt for nearly 40 years and was home to dairy cows, pigs and a temperamental horse.

A biro sketch of ‘the old ancestral home’

The great aunt retired from farming in the early 1990s, selling the remaining cows (apart from an ancient Jersey named Bron) and set up home in the converted shippen across the yard with her widowed sister-in-law and fellow farmer. My parents purchased the old farm house and garden and moved in with their delightful offspring.

Over the years the garden has been transformed by our mum, with able assistance from our dad. It’s still changing, as all gardens do, with more borders having been added and existing ones extended in recent years, taking up more and more of the big lawn.

There’s still a fair amount of grass for Dad to cut. Once a very large vegetable garden that was rotovated by the great aunts every year, my siblings and I used to play tennis on the lawn during the summer months, especially come Wimbledon fortnight. A lack of court markings and a wobbly chicken wire net made accurate scoring (or challenging a sibling’s dodgy shot) rather tricky, and not quite knowing how the ball would bounce on the uneven surface always kept you on your toes.

This part of the garden used to be a pig shed. The breeze block ruins remain and have been turned into a feature, with the odd little ‘room’ overlooking fields on the other side. The standard Cotoneaster on the right was grown and trained by our Nana and planted here by Mum many moons ago.

The Valerian and Sisyrinchium striatum (or Pigroot, which is rather apt) is doing its spready-softening-the-edges thing while a tall ornamental ‘waftus-about-in-the-breezus’ grass gets on with its wafty-about-in-the-breeze thing.

The border on the other side of the lawn was made a lot deeper a few summers ago. A new Rowan flowered for the first time this year and hopefully there’ll be berries come the autumn.

Another extended border nearby creates a path that leads to an island bed…

…and eventually a wildlife border, complete with tiny pond.

This fragrant Clematis clambers over a nearby wall.

Making your way back from the wildlife border you notice that there are quite a few faces hidden about the garden…

… including this chap.

A new discovery; a Candelabra Primula, possibly the offspring of a pinky red plant and an orange variety found elsewhere in the garden, is growing nearby.

Soon after the big move from town to country my siblings and I helped dig out a fish pond. It’s still full of fish, mostly the great great great grandfry of goldfish from way back when, although passing herons have been known to snack on them from time to time.

This Knautia grows near the pond and last weekend a seedling was acquired for the senior sibling’s garden.

Some of this Woolly Rock Jasmine (Androsace languinosa) may also have found its way into a pot and into the aforementioned senior siblings car.

It grows in a small rockery in what was the original front garden. Head on through the arch and you end up in the veggy garden.

This is the other side of the front garden, and the view from my old bedroom.

The Honeysuckle that grows along the top of the wall is rather ancient. Although not as ancient as some of the roses in this giant border, including this lightly fragrant, multicoloured beauty.

Believed to date back to the 1950s, someone on Twitter has suggested it could be ‘Masquerade,’ introduced in 1949. It certainly looks very similar and the date ties in.

Formerly a rose bed, some old cine film footage from the mid 1960s (featuring the great aunt’s mum; our mum’s nana) doesn’t quite show the corner where this rose grows. All manner of self-seeded loveliness abounds in this part of the garden and it looks almost prairie-like at the moment.

Aquilegias of various hues can be found in full flower…

… including this unusual looking one.

And up in the gravel bed, near the garden gate, is this short Sisyrinchium that I’ve been attempting to grow for years. For reasons unknown mine rarely flowers. Perhaps more sun is required.

And there we are, a wander around the grounds of ‘the old ancestral home.’ I’m hoping it won’t be another 10 months until I get to visit again and that some of the cuttings and seedlings acquired last weekend thrive and provide a permanent reminder of home in my tiny Somerset garden.

Six on Saturday (19 June 2021)

I’m going to try and ignore the fact that the longest day is almost upon us and the nights will begin drawing in. It seems too soon for such things. I’m also trying to ignore the daft Minerva Rose whose flower buds promise so much as they begin to open but then shrivel and turn brown around the edges for some reason. Hopefully it will sort itself out. I probably shouldn’t ignore the aphids that have now discovered the Golden Tower Elder nor the nibbled Zinnia seedling on the ‘slug and snail proof’ swing seat (I think a slimy critter has made its way across a stem of a nearby climbing rose that has formed a handy bridge to the delectable delights).

However, I can’t ignore the sorry state of the standard Buddleia. I blamed the wind for the snapped young branches initially. But the other day I observed a wood pigeon attempting to land on it (presumably channelling it’s inner sparrow) to get at a bird feeder. It flattened a few fairly substantial looking stems in the process and was swiftly seen off by an annoyed, arm waving gardener. Alas, I found another four long, leafy Buddleia appendages on the ground yesterday after a calm day weather-wise. The bird feeder has now been moved. But enough gardening gripes. There’s more good than not-so-good in the garden at the moment which leads me to my first Six on Saturday…

1. Several years ago I spotted a Common Valerian plant in a ‘wildflower’ section of a garden centre. It did well initially, producing the odd offspring, but numbers had begun to dwindle. I sowed some seed last spring and several plants have finally done their thing this year, producing tall stems adorned with frothy floating white clouds of fragrant flowers.

2. Grown from the same packet of seed as the yellow variety that featured last week, this Aquilegia was photographed in mid flight, zooming across the conservatory border.

3. Next up, Philadelphus ‘Bette Etoile.’ It was dug up and banished to the back of the hot dry border in early 2020 after I grew bored of its straggly nature and the annual aphid attacks. Left to fend for itself, I didn’t expect the troublesome mock orange to last long but it did surprisingly well and it’s doing even better this year. The easiest way to appreciate the orangey fragrance of the flowers is to make your way behind the blue shed rather than risk tiptoeing through the border.

Admittedly you have to be careful not to get snagged on the Gertrude Jekyll Rose or entangled in the dangling stems of a Montana Clematis. You also have to avoid skidding on some spilt horticultural grit or tripping over numerous stacked pots and the odd bag of compost. But once you’ve made it to the back of the shed, carefully squeezed your head through the narrow gap between the water butt and the fence, and inhaled deeply, the effort to get there all seems worthwhile.

4. This Erodium manescavii, grown from seed kindly provided by Jim, is flowering a lot earlier than last year. It’s also developing into a much more substantial plant. I’ve sown some left over seed so fingers crossed I’ll have a few more in the future.

5. Another week, another Iris. Presumably from the Iris ‘Metallic Mix,’ this one is all dark and brooding… and slightly out of focus.

6. And finally… A white Geranium (possibly ‘Alba’) from that free plant nursery up in North Wales. Which is where I’m headed today. I’ve studied the Covid rules for both England and Wales and I’m not really any the wiser to be honest, but I think so long as I don’t have more than 6 hamsters in the car from three extended households all is good.

They were my Six on Saturday. For more Sixes on Saturday, from all around the world, take a look at the site of the chap who started it all over at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com.

Six on Saturday (12 June 2021)

It’s a fast-paced, blink-and-you’ll-miss-it Six on Saturday today. Alas, there’s no time to show off my newly clipped box balls, share my continuing Black Lace Elder aphid woes or provide an update on the nesting robins (although they got down and jiggy with it the other day). Oh no, I’m curtailing the preambleage and cutting to the chase.

1. And we start with Aquilegia, After a slow start they’re finally up, up and away, including this yellow variety, grown from a packet of seed that came free with The Garden News magazine a few years ago. If flowers made a sound I reckon these would make a wooshing noise. They’re like floral shooting stars.

2. Back in the spring of 2020 I planted a packet of Ixia bulbs of various hues. None of them made an appearance come the summer and I’d presumed that was that. However, this solitary specimen has popped up. I’m not sure I’d bother with them again, but the bees seem to like the flowers.

3. Another week, another ‘Metallic Mixture’ Iris, a yellowy-pinkish-brown one. Alas, they’ve not been quite as mixed as the Thompson and Morgan illustration led me to believe.

I’m beginning to suspect there aren’t going to be any reds, lilacs and dark purples pictured below. The Irises that have flowered thus far (the yellow variety above and the blue lot from last week) aren’t even pictured. It’s ever so slightly disappointing but hey-ho.

4. Up next, a Rock Rose or Helianthemum that made a cameo appearance in last week’s SoS. It’s another one of those plants acquired from the free nursery up in North Wales, with ruffled, crepe paper petals of red and yellow iridescenciness.

5. The almost metallic looking flowers of Allium Christophii have gradually been opening up in the back garden. They’re a new batch planted last November to replace those that have disappeared over the years. Fingers are crossed that these will gradually spread.

6. And finally…. the big blowsy fragrant flowers of ‘Princess Alexandra of Kent.’ A standard rose, this is her second year in the garden and so far she has remained black spot and aphid free.

They were my Six on Saturday. For more Sixes on Saturday, from all around the world, take a look at the site of the chap who started it all over at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com.

Six on Saturday (5 June 2021)

It’s getting a lot trickier to choose just six things for Six on Saturday. After a slow start the garden appears to have moved up a gear, offering new surprises every day. This gardener has also moved up a gear, tackling a few jobs he has been putting off for a while. Tulips (and an ants’ nest) were removed from pots and replaced with tomato plants and several trays of annuals. An overly rampant climber that was beginning to weigh down a section of trellis was chopped back rather severely. And a rather sickly aphid infested Black Lace Elder has been tackled the past few evenings (the sparrows, so diligent at searching out aphids on all the other plants, have tended to ignore these for some reason).

I’m now impatient for the foliage of the daffs and other spring flowering bulbs to die back so I can make a start planting out the dahlias and late flowering annuals that are currently occupying the swing seat and garden bench, safe out of the reach of the slimy ones. However, perhaps I should make the most of this brief respite and simply enjoy the garden. If I could only find something to sit on…

1. First up this week, Alliums. I planted a mixed pack of them last autumn, including some more Purple Sensation. It’s possibly my favourite Allium, although the flowers don’t tend to last as long as those of other varieties.

2. This silver-leafed daisy out in the front garden was acquired way back when from that free nursery up in North Wales (my parents’ garden). It’s been flowering away for many weeks now and is still going strong.

3. Another plant that started its life at the old ancestral home up in Wales is this Geranium. I thought I’d been a bit ruthless keeping it in check last summer but the purple beauty has bounced back.

4. Another week, another Dutch Iris. This is from a pack of ‘Metallic Mixture’ planted in the autumn. I suspect more will feature over the coming weeks.

5. Next up, a lupin. One of my lupins, grown from seed back in 2017, is in full flower but the one pictured is ‘Persian Slipper.’ It’s stouter and more curvy of leaf than other varieties. As nice as lupins are in flower I think I prefer them at this stage, although the bees don’t.

6. And finally… Do you remember the rather shoddily grafted mini-standard ‘Friesia’ rose I purchased online during the first lockdown? Well, despite the dubious graft it’s doing rather well.

I still have it strapped up though, just in case. Here it is from another angle.

They were my Six on Saturday. For more Sixes on Saturday, from all around the world, take a look at the site of the chap who started it all over at https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com. Right, I’m off to prepare for a talk via Zoom later this morning. I’ve not given an online talk before; finger’s are crossed that it isn’t a complete disaster.