Last Sunday evening I ordered a bare root rose online. ‘Order now for guaranteed delivery before Christmas’ it said on the homepage. “Yeah right,” I thought. I was still waiting for deliveries of this and that which were supposed to have arrived weeks ago. But I was fine with a later rose delivery. The last thing I wanted to do in this cold weather was dig holes and plant stuff.
On Wednesday evening, while Mrs OMAHGT and I were eating our tea and watching The Chase, the door bell rang, accompanied by loud hammering on the door. I jumped a little, nearly spilling the gravy that I’d applied a little too generously over my chips and mushroom pie.
“Sounds like a delivery,” my wife said calmly. “I reckon it’s answer ‘A'” she added, nodding at the telly. I raised a skeptical eyebrow. It seemed rather late for a delivery and it was far more likely to be answer ‘C.’
I got up and made my way to the door, a little apprehensive. Was I going to be greeted by a pushy sign-up-to-a-charity-there-and-then person, an axe murderer or perhaps burly carol singers that wouldn’t believe I was loose-changeless? I paused at the front door, took a deep breath and opened it. A driver in a van waved as he drove off and there, on the door step, was a large paper bag. It was the rose.
And was I pleased that it was neither charity person, axe murderer nor burly carol singers? Well, yes. Was I thrilled the rose had arrived so quickly? Err, not really.
“What was it?” my wife asked as I returned to the sofa.
“That rose has arrived,” I replied glumly. “Which means I’ve got to plant it out on Saturday, in the cold, with the ground all frozen and my hands all chapped and sore. Why did they have to be so efficient?” I paused. “Err… what was the correct answer to that last question?”
“It was ‘A.'”
And after that long winded introduction it’s time for Six on Saturday, most of which are ever-so-slightly out of focus as my phone camera seems to object to the cold almost as much as my hands do.
1. First up, a frosted Box ball. I discovered Box moths in some of these back in October; the first time they’ve been spotted in the garden. I fear I’m going to have to keep a close eye out for caterpillars next year.
2. The Zinnia ‘Jazzy’ flowers look almost as good dried and crispy as they do in when all fresh soft of petal.
3. Mahonia ‘Soft Caress’ grew quite a bit over the summer. The flowers have long since finished but the foliage is proving pleasing all year round.
4. It got down to minus 6.6 degrees Celsius on Thursday night. The Loropetalum chinense ‘Black Pearl’ has been wrapped up in horticultural fleece for a few weeks now, just in case conditions got a little too chilly for it. Peering underneath its protective layer yesterday evening it seems okay so far.
5. Continuing the frosty theme, Viburnum tinus ‘Eve Price’ was looking rather sparkly the other morning.
6. As were the rose hips of the patio Rose ‘Violet Cloud,’ possibly one of the most floriferous and healthy roses in the garden. Talking of roses, I guess I’d better plant that new one if it thaws later today.