Friday, December 05, 2008


Spring for me begins in late November or early December, depending on the season and my energy levels.
It begins when the last of the years leaves have been cleared from the beds and the grass has had its final cut. In only a few more days the snouts of the emerging daffodils will be damaged- even with the blades set high. Suddenly you can see the snowdrops coming through, and the buds of the early Hellebores are already showing their colours. In the winter flowers deserve to be examined with far more attention than they get in the height of the summer and so often the scent is staggeringly powerful.
Next year no plant will have to be propped up after is has toppled, no slug will have a chance to do any damage and ,however dry it might be, nobody will persuade me that water is a ‘scarce resource’ in England.
Gardening is all about looking forward.

Saturday, July 19, 2008


I was sent a seed of this spectacular plant some years ago. It seems perfectly happy here outside - in a moderately sheltered corner.
The stems and leaves are completely flat - as though they had been crushed by a vast roller. In July it is covered with masses of violet pea-like flowers. It has reached about 5'and I just love it!

Sunday, July 06, 2008


The elegant shape of the flowers gives them a style that puts them head and shoulders above the 'dinner plate' hybrids. They seem easy enough to grow - given enough moisture. I grow them from seed, which is a laborious process, but worth the effort.

Thursday, March 27, 2008


This stylish woodland plant , enjoying moist acid soil, is looking superb now.
It has the effect of making it's neighbours look a little vulgar!

Thursday, January 17, 2008


There is a lot more action in the garden now and a surprising number of different snowdrops are already in flower.
On the shrub front, the old January stalwarts are flowering even better than usual - after so little cold weather.

A really sharp snap will kill Correa x harisii - but if it stays alive, it will flower continuously from November until spring. It is worth giving a sheltered spot.

The deliciously scented Daphne occasionally takes a battering - but, so far, never a terminal one.

Lonicera elisae is a little dull, and would scarcely be noticed at any other time of the year, but in mid-winter even this most insignificant flower gets due attention.