Six on Saturday: 26 May 2018

My life is getting more and more like Don Quixote or, better put, the Man of La Mancha. Reading all the weekly six posts is now becoming an impossible dream. Commenting on them all is way past the impossible stage so often all I can do is “Like” as many as I can get through (which I’d do anyway if anything I wanted to say had already been said a few times by too many others). It’ll be more and more like being in the footsteps of Julius Caesar – “Veni, vidi, probaverunt”. Of course, we all know (don’t you?) that he never said “Veni, vidi, vici” about Britain. I don’t think Britain had been invented when he said it. Back then, the Brits were all Welsh. Before the stupid English got lost while trying to sail from Ghent to Aix and landed at Thanet or somewhere that way, thinking it was Benidorm. And there’s the old story about the Roman legions on one side of a misty valley and the Welsh tribes on the other ….. But I digress.

I am late to the fray today as my local HPS Group had its annual plant sale and I was on my way there before 7 am. Anyway, I thought that I ought to give the infamous Gill Heavens a chance to get in first for once. As she doesn’t get out of bed before lunchtime, this means I would normally have to twiddle my thumbs for hours, of course, as I’m usually one of the early birds who’s up before the sun. But I digress again.

The whole purpose of this shebang (or the purpose of this whole shebang if you prefer) is to share six things in the garden on Saturday. That might be six things actually in the garden but things in the house count as, usually, the house stands in the garden and so therefore anything in it …. But I digress yet again and now risk the wrath of Granny.

So here is my six for this week. Every item fully within the rules. Of course. Just as Gill H ate her breakfast of cornflakes and rioja in the house and so may include that in her six, also fully within the rules.

1 Geraniums

I know! Last week I included Geraniums in my six but called them Geums. Well these are more Geraniums. Correctly named this week and perennial just like Granny’s. But different from last week’s two. They’re var.unk. because they predate my propensity to label everything, photograph it in situ, make copious notes and add to my Shoot profile. In fact, most of them were gifts from people who helpfully removed the labels because the prices were printed on them; others were bequeathed. Says something about people that they remember to leave specific plants to people in their wills, just because someone said “I like that.” Some are in flower; others not yet.

2 Aquilegia

A little selection, because I have one. I featured one of my colonists last week. I included it again shamelessly this week because, it seems, what I thought was one plant is actually two. Or one with an identity crisis. I have Columbines appearing all over the place, all different, all unplanted by me.

3 Ducks

Well not the bird type but the weed type. I’ve had my fair share of pond problems this year. Well, after 20+ trouble-free years, the odds were stacking up. I now have duckweed. And wow, does it grow quickly. And double-wow, don’t the tadpoles want to keep it! Try as I might, scooping it out is proving a real chore as taddies jump into the net and have to be rescued. I’ve taken the pump out to allow a desludging of the bottom (that’s the pond bottom for you sniggerers), but that’s also a problem as there’s not that much sludge but when I disturb it, I can’t see what I’m scooping at until the dust settles and I end up scooping out frogs that have made a home in the sludge. The amphibians (and a couple of dragonfly larvae) are really getting in my way. Meanwhile, if I clear half the pond surface of the bloody stuff (you’d swear in my shoes) one afternoon, it’s covered again the next. And it’s important to keep at least half the surface free of the shitty stuff (I know, swearing again but I’m avoiding f…….). Believe me, if you get any in your pond, get it out quickly! Nothing else matters. A square inch will become a square metre overnight. And yes, that is a plastic duck on one of the photos. He seems to dissuade the heron who used to nick frogs when it couldn’t find any fish.

4 Rose Wild Edric

First rose bloom of the year. This is from David Austen. It is reputedly a very versatile rose, being good as a specimen or for hedging. I like it because it flowers twice a year, each time for a fair time. And it’s trouble-free.

5 Cornflower and Euphorbia

Last year, these two were tiny(ish) babies fresh out of 9 cm pots. This year they’ve started on their world domination tour. I like the combination of purple and yellow, even if they’re in different holes.

6 London Pride

The pedantic will refer to this as “Saxifraga × urbium (11) ‘London Pride'”. I don’t know what the (11) means and I can’t ask as I’m not a member of the RHS any more. Only the RHS seem to use that magic number. It’s a reliable performer at this time of year with its dainty flowers, held high in profusion. I’m now hunting down the variegated variety.

I would get down on bended knee to acknowledge the role of The Propagator in establishing this meme but I can’t. Age limits the bending, see. But I will exhort you to visit his blog in order to acquire lots of linkages to other bloggers who contribute to the weekly boost in his visitor numbers. Just be prepared for no sleep whilst you plough through the increasingly long list of blogs.

Now I need to do some watering as him upstairs has not yet managed to make rain fall inside greenhouses. I’ll have to read other sixes tomorrow, or Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday…… There are now so many it’s impossible to read one week’s before it’s time to start on another lot. But I’ve said that already and Granny will be swiping me with something hard soon. Until next time, enjoy your Prosecco, uh, I mean, garden.

17 thoughts on “Six on Saturday: 26 May 2018

  1. Sympathy with the duck weed. I ended up stripping out my froggy pond and starting again so that I could get rid of it. Just one tiny bit left behind multiplies before your eyes.

  2. I am going out today so I knew I had better get up at the crack of dawn if I intended to read Mr Kingdon’s blog before I left. I am glad that I did. That is a classy plastic duck! I didn’t notice it – I was looking for a bright yellow one – I hope the heron notices it though. I haven’t mentioned the flowers yet, surely I am not digressing am I? That rose is a lovely deep pink, there are plenty of buds on mine but no flowers yet. I am pleased the perennial geraniums are on first on the blog. I have a different one in the front garden whose leaves are similar to the last one.
    Well a most interesting and informative Six-on-Saturday, about the garden, too.
    (Just for information, HimIndoors incurred my wrath…….once!)

    1. I’ll have to make the post longer next week so you won’t have to go to bed on Saturday night at all. 😉 There used to be two ducks (male and female colours) but one sank. I’ve noticed the heron dipping his beak down to the water to steal a frog but as it disturbs the water surface the duck bobs up and down and the heron scarpers. If I can save a frog or two I’m happy. If the heron ate slugs and snails I might tolerate it a bit more. If HI incurred your wrath only once, the punishment must have been enough to ensure no repetition. I shall write carefully.

  3. I finish with you this week (the best for the end?) And I finally managed to read all the SoS I subscribe (and there are more and more as you say). I liked your geraniums as much by the shape of the leaves as the flowers. Thank you for the historical reminder and this morning laughing !

    1. I think I’ll have to limit my SoS reading to a select list of followed blogs now. I don’t like to dis-hearten newbies, many of whom seem to be first-time bloggers too, but i need to get on with the planting (around 650 plants still waiting patiently ….).

  4. I too like the combination of euphorbia and centaura. And sympathise with the reading challenge, there’s so much gardening to be done!! And to be fair to you, you have to battle that duck weed – hope you get the upper hand.

    1. The semi-classic combination of purple-blue and yellow seems to have grabbed attention this week. Maybe I’ll revisit my youth and fill a bed with a combination of yellow marigolds and purple lobelia. I think I’ll take a leaf out of Fred’s book and concentrate on a smaller list of blogs that I’ve followed for some time. I’ve dropped out of other memes as SoS has taken over. Time to rebalance a bit. I have to aim to just keep the duckweed under control through the summer-autumn; then to eradicate it (hope!) over winter before swearing in spring! 😉

  5. Cornflower and euphorbia are a zingy combination. I’m pretty sure the blue geranium is Roxanne, because I just bought one this week.

    1. The blue Geranium is Roxanne-ish, I’ll agree, but I’ve had it here since 1993 and I’d seen it in another garden ten or more years earlier. Roxanne wasn’t released to public gaze until 2000. Still, I’ll just stick a label in the ground with “Roxanne” on it. Won’t hurt.

  6. Looks like (11) is section Gymnopera of Saxifraga. I need new genes in my self sown Aquilegias, all the interesting ones have gone. Excuse to visit garden centre, like I need one.

    1. I can let you have some genes if you want. I’ve walked around the area quite a way from the house but have yet to see any Aquilegias in another garden so where mine have come from is a real mystery. It’s not so much that I have them but the variety in the flowers that gets me. There is a garden centre about half a mile away ….! I thought your house was built onto the end of a garden centre. 😉

  7. You make me laugh so I have to read your post. And I love the centaura and the euphorbia combination. And I am not sure I can resist Wild Edric – does he smell nice? Have a good weekend and I hope you get time in the garden.

    1. Thanks. Edric has a nice clovey old rose scent if you get up close; I grow it more for its vigour than it’s smell. The bright blooms are up to 4″ across so they really make an impact in the border. The catalogues say he has a hint of cucumber but I’ve not noticed that.

    1. The A’s just arrived. No-one I know nearby grows them but it seems plants can migrate some distances, Maybe some birds have nibbled seeds and pooped them out here (I get a lot of bird poop, usually on my washing as they make room for the next meal session on my feeders). All is very well, thanks. I like being busy in the garden!

  8. I like the idea of being infamous. I might cultivate that image. London Pride is a great favourite of mine at this time of year, (II) or not. Love the idea of leaving plants in wills. Have you got anyone in mind for that peony ……?

    1. I could leave that peony to someone who’s infamous for nicking nice plants from others’ gardens and giving them plants that she’s grown by mistake.

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