Roses everywhere are starting flowering. Flowering shrubs are, too - and the Rhododendrons by the water race - outbursts of colour and foliage fill every border. The garden is positively blooming, radiant with good health!
The flowery (and greenery) scenes are hard to describe adequately in words. All the different colours and forms keep taking me by surprise, and I'm wandering around like a wide-eyed tourist. Hey - look at the Hostas! My goodness, what a beautiful fruit salad coloured rhododendron! Ooh! Look at the tree peony in flower! Then, naturally, reality kicks in - Ha! I planted those! I chose that rose! See, I really do like Hostas! Aargh! Weeds!
Pansies and Forget-Me-Nots
Anyway, this sort of sums up my gardening weekend. I have been planting and weeding, and in every garden border I spy something new. The first apricot foxgloves flowering by the car bridge, the new Heuchera under the Almond tree looking beautiful (for now), yellow and purple pansies running riot, china blue forget-me-nots nearly ready to be ripped out. The big irises are ready. My Gunnera by the water race has tripled in size since I last checked. The spotty Ligularia has heaps of new, freshly spotted leaves. And the Hostas everywhere are amazing!
As I write, irrigation is being attached (so to speak) to my new climbing roses by their archways in the Hazelnut Orchard. As soon as I have had a coffee break I will go and give encouragement. I am so very lucky - particularly in having a resident weekend welder who can deliver thirteen sturdy metal arches with the minimum of fuss.
A Cluster of Dublin Bay Red Roses
Later today we are going to get (that is, rudely dig out) five unwanted roses (hopefully none are Bantry Bay) and one pencil slim conifer from my friend's garden. Where to put them? And perhaps that nursery trailer will be on the roadside again, stocked full of sale price Lavenders and Hebes, and I can fill the car boot with yet more plants. Hee hee!
These are exciting times - the garden is beautifully on the move, and my head is whirling with perennial thoughts, new ideas, and rosy images. New plants are like a reward for extremely good garden behaviour - for example, planting out my vege garden, with row markers, and stakes provided for the tomatoes (before they get big enough to need them).
The new roses are semi-pruned and planted in the Dog-Path Garden, near the (juvenile) Copper Beech tree. I mention the tree size to show sensible forward planning - obviously when bigger there might be too much shade. The new rhododendrons are photographed. They are a lovely collection of yellows, creams, and peachy tones - all fruit salad colours, a brilliant colour combination for a batch of anonymous shrubs.
Ha! I can remember when I planted rhododendrons in totally the wrong places. I am now definitely older and wiser, and my rhododendrons are older - and rather larger... Oops...
One of My New Rhododendrons
Monday 31st October
I am seriously gardening today. I love my garden! But I like it to have adequate water, and the plantings in Middle Garden and the Hen House borders have been suffering. So I have found hose extensions, and a remedial watering system is firmly in place. I have also planted more lettuces and spuds in the ever-expanding vege garden, sensibly ripping out ageing forget-me-nots to make way for a patch of red rascal potatoes.
My new Hostas are called, if it means anything, Minuteman, and have found their special place by the glass-house. There I've been digging out (again) more pieces of lilac phlox, and can smell one of the nearby fragrant rugosas. Rusty the puppy (one year old!) has been desperately squeaking at a nearby large flax on the edge of the water race - perhaps he has seen a mouse, or a hedgehog?
I am allowed to have a short morning coffee break - though I will take my drink over to Duck Lawn, sit on the grass, and plan my next hose shift. Simple things are the most pleasing, sometimes, in a garden!
What a wonderful day puppy and I have had! Watering, planting new plants, weeding, going for two walks, and just pottering about. Puppy is the best company. Dear dog!