Six on Saturday (8 September 2018)

The crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ has begun to take over one of the beds in the back garden and was looking rather untidy. I had big plans last Sunday to dig up a lot of it and make room for a shrub or two, hopefully in an attempt to add a bit more structure. However, my plans were immediately scuppered when I plonked my spade amongst one clump of crocosmia and something hopped out. A froglet. I tried again with another clump and the same thing happened again. Apparently this bed is the daytime hangout for young frogs and they seem particularly fond of the cover the multiple leafy stems of Lucifer provides.

So I’ve had to content myself with just chopping the Lucifer back a little for now and will revisit it later in the Autumn when hopefully the frogs will have found somewhere safe to hibernate. When I accepted some frogspawn for the pond earlier in the year I hadn’t considered how perilous an ordinary garden task such as digging or cutting the grass would become.

1 An anonymous dahlia. I featured this as an SoS in June but it’s still going strong. It will get left in the pot over the winter and if it survives it survives, and if it doesn’t I’ll grow some more from seed.

2. A zinnia, Purple Prince, grown from a packet of seeds that came free with a garden magazine. You can’t really tell from these photos, but it’s a different colour to the zinnias growing in the background and has a more velvety look about it somehow. I wouldn’t say it was purple though!

Only two plants have survived out of the four originally sown. One just gave up on life for no apparent reason. The other got snapped in the wind a few weeks ago. They were sown quite late but hopefully they’ll have a few more flowers before the first frost.

3. This patio rose has featured before (9 June) but is having a new flush of flowers. Back in June I had no idea what it was called but I stumbled across the original label a few days ago. It’s Violet Cloud.

4. Next we have Linaria vulgaris or Common Toadflax. I grew this from seed a few years ago and it was threatening to take over the front garden. I’ve been rather ruthless with it this year, pulling most of it up. However, the flowers are pretty and I may continue to let some go to seed.

5. A new acquisition and a bargain, Verbena bonariensis ‘Lollipop’. The larger verbena has seeded itself here there and everywhere in both the front and back garden. However, it can get a bit battered in the wind so I rather like the idea of this shorter variety. I’ve yet to work out where to put it, possibly away from its taller relative initially so that I can be more certain of which seedlings have been produced by which plant.

6. And finally, another former SoS that has flowered again, Margaret Merrill. It’s not doing very well where it is. I don’t know whether this is down to the awful clay soil, too much competition from neighbouring plants or too much sun. I’ll try moving it in the Autumn to another position as it would be nice to see this scented rose thrive.

And 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.

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18 thoughts on “Six on Saturday (8 September 2018)

    1. Thanks. I must admit I was initially disappointed when I realised the white dahlia had survived and the red one hadn’t. However, it’s grown on me.

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      1. How embarrassing! I am so familiar with the purple variety that I have them as my mental image. I have just planted a pot of Canon Went though. I actually saw a big clump of your yellow Toadflax in the week and thought of your post.

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  1. For a group of plants associated with bright colours that single white Dahlia is a beauty. I keep seeing, and admiring, toadflax in the hedgerows and thinking it might be nice to have. How easy is it to keep under control? I don’t need any more weeds.

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    1. It’s easy enough to pull up but it does have slight leanings towards garden domination if you let it go to seed. Mr Fothergill suggests it’s an ideal addition to the flower border and wildlife areas and is a good cut flower. The bees certainly like it.

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    1. I’ve just had a rummage through old seed packets but haven’t found the dahlia one amongst them. I think it was a dwarf variety and a mixture of colours. I spend a bit of time sitting and admiring but more time sitting and planning what to move or chop back!

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  2. I really like Margaret & knowing she has scent, well that makes her all the better. I’m also a sucker for toadflax. It may be common, but to me, it’s a bit classy. The toads/frogs’ve been quite obvious in my garden this year, as well. They spring out of pots & vines & all sorts of places I never saw them before. I’m so glad Lucifer’s taken yours in.

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    1. This is our first year with frogs. I hope they stick around and snack on the slugs (though at the moment even the smallest slugs are bigger than the frogs).

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