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Friday, April 03, 2015

Spring Garden

The garden is a riot of yellow. The laburnum hedge is exuberant and the daffodils are gradually unfurling. I went overboard on the daffodils and narcissus this time thinking that I wouldn't need to replace them every year as I do with tulips. So in the front and back garden I planted four varieties, all supposed to flower at roughly the same time: King Alfred, Delibes, Tahiti and Yellow Cheerfulness. I couldn't resist a few tulips in the back garden, purple Negrita and Purple Prince. I complemented the daffs at the front with lots of forget-me-nots and muscari.

My piƩce de resistance was a crocus bowl.

I searched endlessly for a large terracotta bowl and eventually found one online. I planted it full of crocus and iris Reticulata. Unfortunately some of the bulbs got pulled out by the critters and the crocuses chose to flower at different times. But the overall effect was pleasing.

Daffodil King Alfred, forget-me-nots
In the front rose bed I refreshed the annual hyacinth display and planted a few more, the purple varieties Kronos and Peter Stuyvesant. Hyacinths seem to love the gravelly soil and south facing aspect.

The daffodils have been less successful than I expected. The King Alfreds and Delibes are all out but quite a few of the others are still in tight bud. Delibes is stunning with the orange centre but it droops and hangs its head. Quite a few of the daffodils from previous years are "blind" - plenty of foliage but no flowers. They may yet surprise me, as the Pheasant Eye narcissus did last year, by suddenly flowering in May.

Meanwhile the forget-me-nots, bought from a garden centre rather than grown from seed as I normally do, struggled. They seemed to have some mildewy problem and I had to get rid of a few.

Elsewhere in the garden, I've planted five hollyhocks, double pink and salmon, and two purple foxgloves. I experimented with holly hocks last year and they were a stunning success. The main challenge is keeping the slugs and snails at bay. They haven't been noticeable yet but I took the advice of Pippa Greenwood and started my slug control on Valentine's Day. This year I'm unleashing the entire battery: organic pellets, copper rings, egg shells and nematodes. Be gone you ghastly molluscs!

I'll report back on how that goes.

My mystery hedge (I think it's Laburnum)


Daffodil Delibes 


mumfypat said...

I think that hedge is forsythia.
You've reminded me how lovely forget-me-nots are. Such a wonderful blue.

Maggie May said...

You have some pretty spring bulbs and flowers there.
Crocus are lovely in that pot and I do love the way that forget me not springs up everywhere and sometimes has to be tamed!
Great time of the year.
Maggie x