Six on Saturday: 21 October

It’s Saturday again and time for another Six on Saturday. I missed last week thanks to a misbehaving stomach; I took some time in lieu. But I’m back this week, despite having a computer that’s suffering from a severe and recurrent dose of failedwindowsupdatedness. I’ll be going quiet after this post. For how long I don’t know. As it’s not really outdoor weather here today, I’m biting the bullet and going for a clean re-installation of Windows10. I may be gone some time. After several months of intermittent failures I need to get some sanity back,

Still, thanks as always go to The Propagator for hosting this meme and bringing a motley collection of garden bloggers together. Pop over to his blog to read his contribution to today’s festivities and, in the comments on that post, find links to other contributions. I wonder who will be this week’s Saturday on Sunday contributor. There’s always one. If you want to join in the fun and games, the 6 on Saturday link over in my sidebar on the right will take you to the useful participant guide that Mr P has put together.

It’s October, right? We are supposed to be checking the forecasts carefully for the slightest indication of the F-word. If we miss it, there will be plenty of hearings of the other F-word. The first F is, of course, Frost. I’ll leave the other to your imagination.

But it is supposed to be October, right?

So why is my first contribution today a lupin? I’ve had the first and second flushes. I was checking for ripening seed the other day. But today, I’m greeted with this:

 

 

So it is October, right?

As I was walking back up the garden from the lupin, I noticed that my lilac was looking a bit unseasonal too. It’s supposed to flower in spring. But it’s developing buds are number two today.

 

 

So it is October, right?

As I’ve said before, it’s been a funny year in which so many plants have selfishly ignored the timetables and have flowered at all sorts of odd times. My spring-flowering heathers are, again, threatening to flower in autumn and deprive the bees of their wake-up source of nectar in the spring.

Still, more seasonally, my “Llandudno fuchsia” is coming into flower. A bit late really but well on the way to its normal autumnal burst of colour. I don’t know the variety; as I’ve mentioned before I nicked a cutting some years ago from what was then a remarkably unloved public garden in the shadow of the Great Orme. I believe the garden is now properly cared for.

 

 

Fatsia japonica, I was told when I planted it some time ago, would be a failure as it was not hardy in this part of the world. Well, so far, it’s confounded its critics. It flowers around this time every year. The rather weird-looking balls seem to be a magnet for wasps which don’t then bother me if I’m eating outside. If they behave normally, they will develop into balls of little black berries.

 

 

A couple of weeks ago, I bit several bullets and cleared out the summer bedding. This part-of-a-bed was bare. Now it’s planted with a mix of pansies, wallflowers and stocks, underplanted with tulips and interplanted with slug pellets. Slugs have been a real pain this year; I suspect my nematodes went on strike.

 

 

And talking of bedding, I’ve also cleared out and replanted my wall planters and hanging baskets. For the winter I plant them with a mix of primrose Husky (on the sides) and polyanthus varieties (on the tops). The short stalks on which polyanthus flower raises those flowers up above the foliage so they become more visible from below. The primroses flower tight to the foliage which works around the sides.

 

 

And finally, a bit of promise. The arrival of these bulbs was timed carefully to coincide with the arrival of Brian. That’s not the Brian who blogs over at Brimfields.com but Storm Brian. I don’t think Brian likes having Brian named after him. Hopefully there’ll be a dry day soon and I can get them into the ground. I’m particularly looking forward to having native British bluebells in the garden again next year. I hope, after a couple of years’ quarrantine, I’ve eradicated all the Spanish invaders. I probably haven’t but, at least, I’ll have one year in which to enjoy the real things.

 

 

Well that’s it for this week. If the weather’s good, enjoy your garden. If it’s bad, enjoy looking at your garden through the windows.

 

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12 thoughts on “Six on Saturday: 21 October

  1. My Fatsia is also in bud. It’s always a race to see if it can flower before the first hard freeze. I also notice lots of wasps on the flowers–many more wasps than bees. It’s the only plant I can think of that favors wasps.

    1. Mine’s fully flowering now. Why it’s attractive to wasps and not bees is a mystery that Google has yet to solve, at least with certainty, for me. On previous experience, I have until early December before frost hits here. May be a bit earlier this year if the panic press are to be believed.

  2. It is bulb planting time here now that the ‘storm’ has gone! Technology is so good when it’s good and !?!? When it’s not. I find watching the endlessly spinning ball on my Mac so soothing!!

    1. It looks like the rain will finally go away today and I can get on with the bulb planting. Unless the ground is too waterlogged to risk walking on (heavy clay here). I spent most of Saturday, all of Sunday and a large chunk of Monday getting the PC right again. And spent around £100 in all. And I now see Microsoft have started rolling out their next major update. I may buy an abacus and a typewriter next

  3. You’re right it certainly has been a strange year and getting stranger, as your lupin and lilac demonstrate. My own Six this week follows a similar theme. The storms here this weekend might finish things off, but there are loads of plants out there that don’t realise what time of year it is!

    1. I sat through the storms beating hell out of a computer. Nipped outside this afternoon to check on damage. Surprisingly plants all survived but a compost dalek was neatly lifted off its compost dalek-shaped pile of degrading plant matter and deposited on a rose bush. It fitted perfectly back onto the contents which, somehow, were undisturbed.

  4. Goodness that lupin is hardy. Your Llandudno fuschia looks a lot like our Donegal fuschia – a very hardy speciman. I hope you are not gone too long

    1. And that lupin survived Brian. I’ve got enough computer functionality back to, well, function. Having a break before starting the loooooooong process of installing all the applications that actually do useful things.

  5. Oooh, a white lupin! I want one! Sorry to hear about your computer troubles. I haven’t had any trouble with Windows 10, but yesterday my language settings reverted to Canadian English and all my quote and question marks turned into e-acute or E-acute. Got that fixed this morning. Constant rain today, so I’m looking at the garden through the windows. Next week’s forecast is better – maybe I’ll get more bulbs planted.

    1. Windows 10 runs fine when it runs fine. But when it goes wrong it becomes something totally unprintable! I’m still not back to normal after over 24 hours of screaming at this useless piece of also unprintable. I would put a contract out on Bill Gates but, it seems, there’s a long queue.

  6. Good luck with the download John, my last update didn’t work either, but I just ignored it. Not misbehaving just yet. Love the late lupin! Shame I’m not closer, I could come and help with the bulb planting, such a shame. 😉 Glad you are back on form.

    1. It was only when I got delving deep into trying to find what the problem is/was that I discovered that it wasn’t just the Creators update that wouldn’t install – the version numbers indicated that the last major Anniversary update hadn’t installed either. Still, I’m slowly getting back to normal. Bulb planting is necessarily delayed by weather which is some consolation for the time I’m spending glaring at a monitor.

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