EoMV and worst and best of June

I had intended each month to post about the changes in the alder garden but as work couldn’t be carried out due to all the rain last winter I have been posting other parts of the garden, I thought it was time for an update on the alder garden, plants I put there a few years ago with the intention of planting them in a proper home later are still in the alder garden and growing, a view along the alder garden from the south side (back of house) across to the north side (front of house) this garden runs along the west side of my house,
this bank is at the south end of the area and faces north, during this dry spell I have removed the grass though there are roots in the bank, I was thinking it would make a nice area for ferns, it is relatively sheltered from most winds, the primmies are self sown I just weeded around them, the small pine on the left is one of several that must be replanted along my perimeter fence,

everything in the foreground of this photo is to be removed and I am determined to get it done before the end of the year, the lupin were pieces that broke off when I was cutting the dead off 2 years ago, I want them in other areas of the garden, the currants should have been moved last winter, the foxgloves seeded in and I left them as I had not moved the other plants they will die after flowering, I rather like the foxgloves with the lupins not something I would have thought of, nature knows best,

the phoenix rises, these are my wonderful old fashioned pinks Mrs Simpkins they are white flowered but what makes them so wonderful is their perfume that fills the air when the weather warms them, the rabbits like them which has caused me concern in the past but I am relaxing about it because I have realised now that they re-grow from old wood and even push up new growth from the root, these were eaten last January the light coloured chips around them are shredded old fennel stems which still had a strong aroma, rabbits don’t like strong aromas, I don’t know if it deterred the rabbits but they have not been back yet, I would like to leave these pinks in this area but may re-position them,

the pink flowers on the right of the last photo are these hardy geraniums that someone gave me a few years ago, at the time I had nowhere to plant them out so put them in here intending to move them later, they too are going to go before the end of year,  I don’t know which geranium as she didn’t know but looking them up I think they may be G. macrorrhizum,

the bees love these geraniums and I have tried taking photos but the bee won’t sit still and I usually end up with blurred bee or no bee however when I brought some photos up on the computer I was surprised and pleased to see this, I can’t take any credit just a happy accident and clever camera, this camera is much better than my old one,

lastly the tatties, this is the area I dug last autumn to let the winter breakdown, by the time these tatties are dug up it will be well dug and should be weed free,

of course it might not be potato free, this is growing from one I didn’t find when I dug them up last autumn,

the end of month view of the damp meadow I did another panorama as it gives a better view of size, all the heather behind is still my garden I have more garden uncultivated than cultivated which is why I often feel I have little growing,  

I took this photo last night, another view of the damp meadow roughly as I see the meadow from the kitchen window, in this photo you can see the little blue flower of meadow cranesbills, the yellow dots are mostly meadow buttercup,

as I had shown a photo of the jungle side of the front garden earlier in the month I thought I’d show an update as I managed to do a bit of weeding and the beautiful blue geraniums are flowering so well,

now the worst and best, trees, the willows are my worst and this is one of the better ones, you can see the dead shoots from earlier growth, every time these trees try to re-grow they get sapped by more winds, I coppiced some including this one last year as you can see no growth succeeded last year and this year is going the same way, the uncoppiced trees are brown and dead looking,

every cloud has a silver lining, when I bought the first trees 10 years ago I included 5 hazels which never took, last year I bought one hazel and planted in an area sheltered from our south westerly winds, so we now get north east winds which killed early growth and I thought the hazel was lost, this month I saw this a tiny shoot from the roots, hazel can be coppiced and do re-grow from the root if it is still live,

worst and best flowers, no photos of worst as they are not there, sadly the jasione I bought last year has completely gone and I mean completely as I can’t even find the dead crown and the aster frikatii monch has not re-grown, the flowers on iris pallida argentea variegata opened this month and they are the most beautiful blue, this iris has beautiful foliage and that was why I bought it so these beautiful flowers are a bonus,

and my other best is finding the yellow rattle seeds growing as mentioned in the previous wildflower post, I have now counted 12 yellow rattle plants, yellow rattle is not a plant that stands out but here in the UK it is very important if you want wildflowers in grass as it feeds on the grass roots so keeps the grass population under control,

I’m linking this post to Helen at patient gardener for EoMV

and to bumble lush for the worst and best of June

please follow the links to see more garden blogs,

©Copyright 2012 Frances Caple. All rights reserved. Content created by Frances Caple for Island Threads.

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28 responses to “EoMV and worst and best of June

  1. patientgardener

    Gosh you do have a large plot, no wonder you sometimes feel daunted.

    I really like your geraniums and I cant photograph bees either no matter how I try.

    Thanks for joining in again

    • thanks Helen, when I first saw the house just from the road with estate agent details it looked like it was in a field with just a small front garden, when I called in at the EA and asked about it I said there is no fence how much back garden is there and where is the shed? the lady looked at me surprised and said it’s fenced all around and you can’t miss the shed it’s a big stone one, I couldn’t believe it at first the ‘field’ is the garden and the large stone building I saw is also part of the property, this was a big influence on my chosing this house, the house sits in approximately an acre of ground, almost all previously uncultivated, ignorance is bliss I had no idea what I was taking on, Frances

  2. paulinemulligan

    What a lot you’ve done Frances, good to see your plants growing in spite of the adverse conditions. Your iris is beautiful and I’m sure the foliage looks wonderful.

    • thanks Pauline, it is amazing how so many plants bounce back, I will show the foliage eventually but as I only bought the iris last year and it is just 2 tubers now it doesn’t make the impact it will as it increases, if you don’t know it, though you are so knowledgeable and have so many plants you probably do and have some, the foliage is a beautiful white and bluegreen vertical stripe, Frances

  3. Love the images of your damp meadow. And the picture with the lupins and foxgloves. It is so strange to think that you have been struggling with a “dry spell”!

    Your geranium certainly looks like G. macrorrhizum, tough as old boots, and the leaves have quite a distinctive scent.

    • thanks Karen, I still pinch myself that it is dry after 10 months of rain and my garden flooding more times than I can remember I had started to think it would never end and am hoping it won’t return like that again, I think you in west Wales have had more than us as your rain is continuing, I hope you get a break soon,
      it was the scent that confirmed in my mind that it is G. macrorrhizum, Frances

  4. My goodness Frances that meadow is just gorgeous…all your hard work is certainly paying off…they view from your window is just lovely…and what a wonderful wildflower the yellow rattle is…wish I had this wildflower to control the grass from neighbors that grows through my fence….lovely iris too!

    • thanks Donna, the view of the meadow from the kitchen is nice to see which is why I do not want to plant anything between to block it, 2 sides of my garden are bordered by a field and the sheep keep the grass down there but the other 2 sides are wild areas and the grass grows without control, I have managed to get the area at the front between my garden and the ditch cut and keep it cut but I have not been able to cut it along the other side so it grows through though I have discovered if I put the excesses of thugish plants along that border it helps keep the grass at bay, it must be difficult when neighbours don’t look after their gardens, Frances

  5. Enjoyed the upbeat tour Frances and ‘virtually’ following in your footsteps as you think out loud. Lovely blue-purple in the lupins (match so well with the foxgloves in colour and height) The damp meadow looks like a greetings card.
    p.s. I have G. macrorrhizum, – leaves are musky when rubbed but they spread beautifully

    • thanks Laura, it’s not just thinking Laura I have plans but the weather/time and finances don’t conform! I have decided I have got to stop being a wimp and get out there even if it is raining sometimes, Frances

  6. Thanks for joining in Frances! Hmm…I’m a bit envious of that random potato you found, especially after the loss of my patch! :) And congrats on capturing that bee in action. I love seeing shots like that. Sorry to hear about the loss of some of your plants, but it’s interesting how the hazel has sort of benefited from it. Funny how nature works. The iris is gorgeous!

    • thanks bumblelush, I did hesitate about joining you when I saw your post and what had happened to your potatoes but reasoned I have losses too, I think all gardeners suffer losses yet we garden on forever the optimist, Frances

  7. I always love views of your damp meadow, and your blue geraniums are spectacular! Gardening is always such a challenge, and a deep satisfaction comes from finding what will grow and prosper. I can see the lovely results of your hard work!

    • thanks Deb, the blue geranium is beautiful and is plentyful on the island as it is in many gardens, it was in the garden covered in grass when I moved here and rewards me well for saving it from the grass, it looks really lovely with lady’s mantle will show photos in a later post, Frances

  8. I really admire a blogger who feels free to show the best and worst of their garden. I do pine for Russell lupines and it’s great when you have such beauty from an unplanned scenario. I love how when it’s year three, get out of their way for fear of being swept away in their beauty.

    • thanks Patrick, I love delphiniums but they do not grow well here, as you can see lupins thrive so I am going with the flow I only added the red one last year it is incredible how much it has grown, Frances

  9. Your Lupins look lovely – I always thought them an old fashioned, too rigid looking flower but have gradually changed my mind (as we gardeners do) and would like to get some for myself.

  10. I do love your lupins.
    You really have your work cut out for you, but the progress that you have made, especially given the adverse conditions you garden in, is something to be proud of.
    S x

  11. Frances, I just adore that panoramic view of your meadow. There are so many colours mixed in there, it’s really lovely. Think I have that same pink geranium but no idea what cultivar it is either. I picked it up at a plant sale last season and it’s been covered in blooms the last month or more. The leaves have a distinct smell, perhaps the scent keeps the critters away?

  12. Hi Frances, the Foxgloves certainly do go well with the Lupins. Your hardy Geranium certainly does look very much like macrorrhizum, gives great ground cover this one. Disappointing that your Frikartii Monch didn’t come through. I really like this plant and bought a couple of them from Crocus, they are expensive but they do supply strong specimens, hope they survive.

    • thanks Alistair, my frikatii was from Beth Chatto last year and it did well last year despite the winds, I think the more than 10 months rain did for it and possibly the Jasione as well, the area they were in didn’t flood but the ground was almost constantly squelchy this is why I can’t hardly believe how dry we have now become though it is raining of a sort at the moment, Frances

  13. I love the photo of the bee in flight. And I would have never thought the lupins and foxgloves would go well together, but they certainly do….beautiful! The meadow looks so lush and healthy. My perennial bed is looking a bit sad now from all the high temperatures and dry weather. The color on that iris is beautiful…something worth staring at.