Lavender, Daphne, & Orange Blossom
All of the shrubs in the side garden by the laundry are original plantings, and I haven't really thought to change anything. They include Lavenders, a deciduous Azalea, a Philadelphus (or Orange Blossom), and two Daphnes.
The aromatic shrubs are a delight for my bumble bees - and my nose! Sitting nearby talking to a cat and watching the bees buzzing about their business is so enjoyable.
Even pushing my way past to hang out the washing becomes a real pleasure. No wonder my sheets sometimes smell of Lavender.
Always in Flower
Sometimes I think that the Lavenders are always in flower. It's often impossible to choose a time to trim them, and as a consequence the original bushes live a dangerous life - large and woody one moment, trimmed down to knee-high the next, then abandoned for a few years. Oops. And I must remember to replace the Lavender Stoechas bushes which used to grow in here behind the Laundry Seat. These were so pretty, even if short-lived.
The Philadelphus (or Orange Blossom) shrub is beautiful when in flower. Its fragrant blooms are always hosting numerous bumble bees, and they seem to last for weeks and weeks. I don't prune this shrub very much.
Orange Blossom and Bumble Bee
The Daphne is the very first shrub to be in flower, early in spring. Some seasons it misbehaves, and one year a rather nasty fungus took over. Well, I just trimmed it down and scrubbed the remaining stems. And I see that it's re-sprouting happily. Phew!
I'm gradually getting to know and appreciate the other shrubs - like the Azalea, spectacular with its flowers perched on high. I'm sure that a little judicous pruning and trimming of this would be appreciated.
This photograph from the Archives was taken in the year 2000. The rose Phyllis Bide has only just started to modestly cover the rose arch. You should see her now!
lavender, daphne, orange blossom - from the archives
I'm thankful that the original gardener had the foresight to plant these lovely shrubs. Think what my bumble bees could have missed out on!