The garden has been getting along very well without me. It looks a little crazy here and there, but I rather like it like that. And anyway, in just eight weeks’ time, the tree at the bottom will be cut down (!) and the whole of that section of the garden will be redesigned.
There is no real incentive to keep on top of everything else with major earthworks looming. That’s my excuse anyway. And besides, up until recently, it has been too wet to work on the garden, and now it’s far too hot. And as you can see from the photograph above, my plan to have runner beans growing in the middle of the herbaceous planting completely failed – the slugs got to my seedlings twice and I’m afraid I gave up. Instead I have two empty wigwams, sad reminders of what might have been. Elsewhere the roses have gone slightly bonkers, stems stretching several feet in the air with nothing to cling to – I think I might leave them that way and see what happens. Actually that’s a lie, I’d like to think that I would do that, but really I will probably consult a rose book and then decide what to do.
But there have been some successes. My original plan for the garden – which is now just over a year old – was to be able to have some form of cutting garden. A rather grand idea for a plot as small as mine (45ft x 18 or so), and obviously a cutting garden in the true sense would be completely inappropriate, but what I wanted was lots of colour, and enough of everything so that I could happily pick a vase a day, if I wanted to, without leaving sad gaps. And by using lots of billowy geraniums it’s been surprisingly easy.
But my star plant at the moment, currently filling the kitchen with the scent of honey, is not one that I had actually chosen in order to pick its flowers: Buddleja davidii “Black Knight”. An unexpected choice for the vase, I admit, but it looks gorgeous with the bronze fennel flowers – the bunch is bulked out with some sedum, verbena bonariensis and my allium Sphaerocephalon, bought on a whim from Peter Nyssen because they were so incredibly cheap (£1.50 for 25 – I’ll be planting more this autumn).
And finally, whilst picking my Buddleja stems I found a plant I thought I’d lost – the lovely Clematis Madame Julia Correvon, she’s made it up the back fence, behind the buddleja and up through the tangle of my neighbour’s jasmine.