I nearly missed these beauties during last week’s visit to Harlow Carr. The first is a very neat hybrid with an even coverage of dark purple spots against a lighter background.
There are so many excellent reasons to visit the English Lake District, but if you love plants, make Holehird Gardens part of the road taken – you won’t regret it. Holehird is home to The Lakeland Horticultural Society, and has an unusual commercial model. The members tend the gardens themselves, which means that visitors who don’t feel able to pay can be offered free parking and entry, though a donation to help with upkeep is much appreciated.
While there’s much more to Holehird than ‘just’ a walled garden, it’s this that draws me back. I can rarely resist the chance to see flowers tumbling together in a beautiful setting. Weathered brick walls provide shelter, make a backdrop for the plants and support several climbers, including roses and clematis. Continue reading “Holehird Gardens: A Peek Inside A Walled Garden”
The Award of Garden Merit is one of the highest accolades a plant can officially acquire under the jurisdiction of the Royal Horticultural Society. I always smile at the British understatement in the official explanation:
AGM plants are:
- Excellent for ordinary use in appropriate conditions
- Of good constitution
- Essentially stable in form & colour
- Reasonably resistant to pests & diseases
Though the wording is restrained (I often wonder how ‘excellent’ crept in there), it’s probably fair to say that AGM is the plant world’s equivalent of an impressive LinkedIn profile. It shows that influential people are willing to vouch for the variety. Continue reading “Plants with Impressive LinkedIn Profiles”
This yellow daylily caught my sweetheart’s eye during yesterday’s visit to Bodnant Garden. The plant produces striking, dark, bronzy stems topped with buds that open to rich yellow flowers. Broad mahogany stripes linger on the backs of the outer petals: a legacy of the bud.
Continue reading “Yellow and Mahogany Daylily”
To accentuate the beauty of a shrub rose, allow it to mingle with other plants, while indulging its desire to be the star of the show. Companion planting has a practical purpose as well as a creative one. Foliage of other plants can help to cover the bare soil and gnarled branches often found at the base of roses, and any mixed planting always attracts a broader range of beneficial insects, helping to keep the rose healthy. Continue reading “Shrub Roses As Companion Plants”
Every now and again, we gardeners spot a plant we really want. Not having the space or the conditions it deserves doesn’t always help reduce the cravings, but when we’re lucky enough to have the perfect spot, we’re almost powerless to resist.
If the plant is a mass propagated, named cultivar (and we know the variety name and can find a supplier) there’s something we can do about it, when it’s not, it’s more tricky. I’ve recently been bewitched by a hellebore I saw in woodland at the Ness Botanic Garden that I fear falls into the latter category. Continue reading “Plantlust”