Six on Saturday: 30 March 2019

Less than 24 hours to go before the clocks go forward here in the UK. And everyone will start moaning about having to get up earlier, having an hour less sleep and, consequently being all grumpy and lethargic tomorrow. I, on the other hand, am looking forward to an extra hour in bed. I’ll still go to bed at 11pm each night whatever “real” time that represents. So effectively I’ll be going to bed an hour earlier.

But resident cat doesn’t pay any attention to the clocks. He runs permanently on “Pillster time”. So in the winter, he wakes me up at 6.30 every morning. But once the clocks go forward, he’ll wake me up at 7.30. I’ll be hopping around, full of the joys of spring. Meanwhile, Gill Heavens will probably be over-feeding herself with pasties in the hope of having an excuse for a lie-in.

So if I go to bed an hour earlier and get up an hour later, I suppose I really get two hours’ extra sleep each night. Two for the price of one. Sounds good. And about as honest as your average BOGOF in the supermarket.

But talking about hopping around, it’s time to hop through six things in the garden on Saturday. The notion of having six things in your garden has been patented and copyrighted by a certain Mr Propagator who hangs out in his little niche of the blogosphere and curates the weekly contributions. This is not curating as in physically caring for a collection of priceless valuables in a museum; rather it’s curating as in copy-writing something in pursuit of his copyright and then sitting back whilst each of us copy-writes our own thing and then cleverly links that to the end of his copy-writing efforts. This, of course, is where to go if you want countless links to other blogs whose bloggers have joined in this enjoyable exercise in confusion. Please DO NOT count the number of links. If you do, they would immediately cease to be countless and the impact will be lost.

Right, off we jolly well hop.

1 Banging the Drim

When it was called Drimys, this shrub was a nice columnar thing which had lots of nice red stems and a measure of nice small flowers in the spring. Now it’s called Tasmannia and has got a little big for its boots. Shooting up a foot higher and flowering more profusely than ever before, it has also spread outwards, though this may simply be branches bending under the weight of flowers.

2 Reduction

A rather uninspiring Frittilaria imperialis. Some years ago I planted 10 of these. Every year the number popping up has reduced by one. 10, 9. 8, and so on. This is the one remaining. So I suppose it’s goodbye. The poor chap gets his swan song celebrated,

3 A Tale of Two Alstroemeria

Mr Prop has been sowing Alstroemeria seeds, having taken a course with Christopher Lloyd and Graham Rice. Mr Prop is not known for his patience when it comes to propping (nor for appreciating that his garden is of finite size). So I thought I’d give him encouragement with a BOGOF offer.

I sowed some seeds in the autumn of 2017. Alstroemeria seeds like to be sown fresh so I sowed when I collected them. About 100 seeds. After about a year, ten had germinated. Some kept at it long enough to be potted on, and potted on again. I now have four seedlings left.

Back in March I took some root cuttings. There’s a knack to this. Maybe I’ll blog the knack sometime. Anyhow …

The seedling is on the left, the rootling on the right.

Patience is needed with seed sown Alstroemeria. You have been warned. Oh, and the germination rate for un-fresh seeds will be lower.

4 Acne

Trick of the light. This isn’t a photo taken with a flash. Spotty Dotty looking good in the shade, where she should be. So there! Podophyllum for the uninitiated.


5 Cheating

I can’t be bothered to grow bedding begonias from seed: way too much fuss! So I buy little plug plants. Which have arrived early. I wasn’t expecting to have to pot up that many little babies just yet. Oh well, plans exist to be changed.

This lot is 140. They were expected.
Another 150 Begonias plus 50 Cineraria (old name). Unexpected.
For good measure, 48 petunias.

I will be going potty dotty for the rest of the day!

6 I Will Survive

A Gloria Gaynor moment. At the end of the planting season I got sent a bag of dwarf Narcissus as a freebie. Nowhere to plant them. Chucked the bag in the greenhouse. Yesterday I was cleaning out ready for the potting up of item 5. And I found this. Deserves a mention for growing in nothing.

That’s all folks. Till next time.

PS Regular readers may recall my mentioning a while back that I’d won a voucher in a competition. Voucher to the value of £140 to be spent with a particular “company”. Well I redeemed that voucher. If you’re interested, read wot I got here.

PPS The germination rate of sycamore seeds is 349%. This rate will be improved if you do not sow them in solid concrete.

PPPS  Regular readers may be worried about my keeping Gill Heavens’ mum in my greenhouse and not offering her the spare bed. I can reassure everyone that aforementioned mum is now re-accommodated in my cold frame and is under daily observation. I will report back once she wakes up.

PPPS I took a three-quarter-mile round trip to the garden centre the other day to collect a plant I’d ordered. That plant cost me £107. I like expensive plants. The plant was actually £8. The other £99 was for the new tyre. I got a puncture. A puncture too close to the tyre wall to plug so a newbie was needed. The original tyre was just over five months old (the car is just over five months old). Expressions of sympathy appreciated.

20 thoughts on “Six on Saturday: 30 March 2019

  1. Your spotty dotty looks about the same size as mine but your Drimys is huge. I just planted one the size of a basketball and I’m worried it’s in the wrong place having seen yours…

    1. My Tasmannia (Drimys) is about 25 years old and, in about 20 of those grew to a stable 7 feet tall by 1.5 feet wide. And until this year, it has stayed at that size. Now it’s a pip over 8 feet tall and about 2.5 feet across. That should give you an idea of the space yours will eventually need. I don’t think Podophyllum grows much bigger than it is now but we’ll see ……..

  2. I must be just about the only Sixer who likes daylight saving! We have another week to go here before we wind our clocks back. Your ‘Spotty Dotty’ is quite fascinating reposing there in the shade…it’s something I could never grow in my garden.

      1. At least I’ll be potting on in the knowledge that I’ll have somewhere to put the pottings. No lack of space here!

    1. Daylight saving has no impact on me. I have a cat! We work on “Pillster time” all year round. All Dotty needs is good drainage. She’s fine in dappled shade.

  3. The tyre saga is too familiar, I lost two to nails in the wrong place a few months back, both only a few months old. I’m liking the MUKDE label below the Podophyllum, also for the uninitiated.

    1. Mukdenia rosii ‘Crimson Fans’. Just breaking ground so maybe a future six mention. As far as I can remember, I’ve never had a puncture in an old tyre. Sod’s law!

  4. You have my sympathies. Both with all the potting up to do and the tyre. My red fritillarias have yet to flower. Maybe that’s the secret. I started with three, lost one, now have five. But no flowers…

    1. Ta. If your frits are coming up strongly but blind, it may be just a case of feeding them. Give them a foliar feed once a month with something like tomato food and increase the frequency a bit as they start to die down. Maybe next year you’ll have flowers.

    1. Thanks. Dotty is quite undemanding. Anywhere with shade or dappled shade will do her fine as long as she’s not over-wet in winter.

  5. I didn’t know anywhere but the US changed their clocks. Stupid, isn’t it? My state may join others in staying with one (the one now, we changed a few weeks ago).
    Your daffodil didn’t grow in nothing, it depleted its stored energy in the bulb. The way forced bulbs in just water bloom. It looks so pretty!

    1. Yup. But this bulb is totally dry. So it must be storing water as well as everything else. I often get bulbs which I have mistreated but which put on a bit of green growth before I plant them. But never before an actual flower. Lots of places change clocks. Though we may soon stop doing that.

  6. This podyphyllum is supernatural with these weird leaves. I discovered on Twitter this one a few weeks ago: interesting ! About the fritillaria imperialis ( one T , two L ;I’m wrong every time..), I planted one with success and for my part I will have flowers soon, for the first time. From what I can read, it will only be short time …

    1. My sole survivor has been flowering for over a week now and should last a couple of weeks yet.. Though something is nibbling it; I suspect lily beetle. I may buy more next year, Frits that is, not lily beetle.

    1. Thanks. More than the garden centre offered. They just laughed.

  7. Yes, I will be moaning about an hour less in bed, I cannot deny it. Unless the sun is shining, then I will leap out have a breakfast pasty and get on with the day. Love Spotty Dotty. Your Dri….. Tasmannia is splendid, although I think I like them more in bud than in flower. Those fritilleries are tricky devils, you never know this one might be the master race and return year on year. Sorry to hear about the tyre but pleased my mum is OK. No movement here yet either. Wakey wakey Peggy!

    1. Your Mum had three nice nobbly bits when I potted her up. Not bad from a seedling last year. She put on a lot of foliage then but didn’t show me her bloomers. Maybe this year?

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