Summer is the time we can actually sit back and see where all our effort during those cold spring days went....until we have to get back to work picking and harvesting of course! I am very pleased with the range of flowers I managed to grow from seed this year, my garden has been mostly shrubs and potted flowers until this year, and I was testing what can survive in our clay soil - turn out, quite a lot of lovely things! The Ladybird Poppies (above) are my favourite of the whole season, unlike the other poppies I grew, these flowers have lasted weeks rather than days, and can survive both scorching heat and pelting rain without looking battered, bonus!
This beautiful mix below is Sarah Ravens 'Jewel Cut Flower Meadow Mix' which does indeed remind me of a stained glass panel when the sun shines through the variety of colours, heights and textures featured: Atriplex hortensis 'Rubra', Linaria maroccana 'Sweeties', Eschscholzia californica 'Orange King', Bupleurum rotundifolium 'Griffithii', Cerinthe major 'Purpurascens', Linum grandiflorum 'Rubrum'
Cerinthe major 'Purpurascens' also known as Honeywort is already a firm favourite of mine, the foliage is such an unusual shape and tone, and the bees absolutely LOVE IT! I recommend you give this plant a try next year, very quick to grow and looks lovely when the delicate flowers bob in the breeze.
The Autumn Sarah Raven catalogue has just arrived so I'm already plotting what other delights I can order for next year, but also doing well now are these wonderfully graceful Salvias and dwarf Lupins, that I brought as plug plants from Ebay as I was too late in getting them started myself. I highly recommend buying plugs from the several large nurseries on Ebay, all my purchased preformed well and arrived in a matter of days.
These poppies sprung up almost overnight, but didn't stay as long as the Ladybird variety, luckily the seedheads are just as beautifull! I really want this area to florish as a wild part of the garden perfect for insects and little creatures, a step in the right direction! I was also pleased to be chicken-sitting again, I loved popping over to see them every morning and pick up the still warm eggs, such happy girls!
This year is surprisingly, my first ever attempt at growing tomatoes. Firstly because I haven't really been a fan of eating them until recently (working on that!) and secondly I was lacking a greenhouse until this year, so far so good! I really love the smell they give the greenhouse, something very nostalgic and fresh about it - reminds me of visiting my Grandads greenhouse when I was little, pressing my nose up against the glass to see what treasures were growing inside!
Sweetcorn and squash doing well, but I fear I won't be growing a huge pumpkin this year, might get a few squashes if I'm lucky, ever the optimist! This beautiful Greyhound below is Lily, a neighbours dog I was looking after this week, the most calm, loving and soppy girl! She is a rescue dog (can't believe her first owner could ever let her go!) and is usually nervous around other dogs BUT her and Mollie are now firm friends. I think the last photograph of Mollie should be on a holiday postcard, believe it or not she's not on her holidays in Asia, just in the oriental part of the garden ;) Hard to believe I know!
Hope you had a lovely August bank holiday!