Six on Saturday (6 July 2019)

I sat on the lawn the other evening, eyes closed, simply enjoying the warmth of the sun, inhaling the delicious scent of the mock orange that hung in the air and listening to the buzz of the bees and hoverflies on the nearby flowers. It was a moment of peace. Tranquillity. All cares forgotten just for a few minutes. I had found my inner zen… until the unmelodious racket of a scrawny young magpie shattered the peace and I began a hay fever induced sneezing fit having inhaled the pollen filled evening air a little too deeply.

I then began pondering what six gardeny things I could share for today’s Six on Saturday, and it was tough. Really tough. But after much deliberation the final six have been chosen…

1. Actually, there wasn’t much deliberating over the inclusion of this one. ‘Miss Belgium’ is flowering. She’s a compact variety that was purchased in the autumn of 2017. This is the first time she’s flowered and I’m rather taken with her.

I’m not sure whether her leaves are supposed to be tinged with red but it adds to her beauty. The flowers are gradually changing from a pale green to a fetching pink. It’ll be interesting to see how the colours continue to alter over the coming weeks and months.

2. The tomatoes are flowering away. Yellow Tumbling Toms and Minibel. And look… tomatoes!

3. This Veronica has struggled for many a year under the big tree at the back of the garden. It would become straggly, floppy and was never much to look at. The bees liked it though.

I dug it up in the spring and moved it to the back of the bed by the curving path and it’s looking far happier.

4. I think Linaria ‘Fairy Lights’ might be one of my favourite hardy annuals at the moment. I grew it for the first time last year after my great aunt gave me a packet of seeds from a garden magazine. I sowed a few of the leftover seeds this spring but there are quite a few offspring from last year’s batch (though there’s no sign of any white and yellow varieties yet). They’re rather striking but also blend in rather nicely with their neighbours.

5. Now initially I was going to include a dahlia in my final six. But then I thought “nah”, the dahlias that have survived the slimy plant assassins of the night thus far will be flowering for months to come, there’s plenty of time to include them (I really hope I don’t come to regret this decision). So the Bishops of Llandaff and Aukland and the first of the flowering dwarf dahilas grown from seed (a yellow one) have been put on hold for now, although you can catch a glimpse of the old Bish of Llandaff in one of the Veronica photos and the little yellow one in my next choice: the carpet of Alyssum and Virginia Stock. It’s one of those happy accidents. The Alyssum was planned, the Virginia Stock was not, but I think the two work quite well together.

The Alyssum also looks good with this Viola.

6. And finally… A few Penstemons have been flowering away for a while now. My favourite is Sour Grapes which lights up this part of the garden. It’s another favourite with the bees.

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


30 thoughts on “Six on Saturday (6 July 2019)

    1. I saw some in a garden centre today with the same red tinge to the leaves so perhaps it’s just what they do.


  1. What you have tomato flowers and tomatoes now! They look healthy!
    About dahlias, I’m like you. My first flowers are arriving and I will definitely have 2-3 items ( or more ) about them in the coming weeks.

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  2. I could imagine the blissfulness you find surrounded with such beautiful specimens. Love garden tomatoes. I get loads of giveaways in the summer. Pestemon looks good. I am growing dahlias for the first time it would be fantastic to see your flowers and others in the coming weeks.

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    1. Dahlias have become really popular. I’ve grown dwarf varieties before but this is my first time with the big ones. Hopefully some will survive the slugs and snails.

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  3. Sour grapes featured in an SoS last week & I immediately fell in love. When I saw your photo, I fell in love again before I knew its name. Will def have to have it next year. It looks really good w/those daisies, too. The alyssum & stock go great together – gardens have a way of self seeding in beautiful designs, don’t they? Also quite like the fairy lights, which I’ve never seen before. Oooo, wonder where they’d fit in my garden. Maybe next to the sour grapes! Lovely Six.

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    1. Penstemons are great as they just keep flowering. Sour πŸ‡ and Laura seem a lot hardier than some other varieties which haven’t always made it through the winter. Easy to take cuttings from too!


  4. Don’t talk to me about hay fever! My eyes currently make me appear like something out of a horror movie!! Your Linaria is very pretty and the tomatoes are doing well. So far there are only two very tiny tomatoes on our plants so it’s not looking good for our sandwiches at the moment. Great blog again πŸ‘πŸ˜Š

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    1. Thank you. Itchy eyes are the worst bit of hayfever. Once you start rubbing them they just get worse. I’m sure your tomatoes will get going soon. Our tomatoes have only just started forming.

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  5. Jealous of your toms. I just have flowers. I’m wondering if I need to get the paintbrush out and help the along pollination wise. Love that sour grapes, lovely colour. Will have to look out for that.

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    1. I’m pondering at what stage I should pinch out the flowers so that the plants focus on developing the tomatoes. I think they’re further behind compared to last year.


    1. I have one penstemon grown from a cutting a few years ago that stubbornly refuses to flower. Fingers crossed yours will flower soon.


  6. A lovely view of your garden, and some special flowers…looking fab, not wanting be sour grapes, and not comment, just because I have been too busy to post. Glorious penstemon!

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    1. More or less. The touch and go dahlia, a few zinnias and a delphinium are occupying it at night!


  7. I have a group of three different Hydrangea serrata varieties all of which have very dark leaves this year, almost black from a distance but closer up it’s dark red. I suspect it’s a consequence of last year’s summer in some way. There are quite a few newish varieties which have red/purple infused leaves, I suspect from crossing with the old Japanese H. serrata ‘Kiyosumi’, notably some of the ‘Dutch Lady’ series like ‘Sabrina’, ‘Selina’ and ‘Salsa’. ‘Miss Belgium’ is quite an old variety, 1935, and I wouldn’t expect the leaf colouring to be a regular thing.

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