Saturday, 4 April 2015

What a difference a rain makes!

After a dry winter, the wind and cold temperatures of late, the rains have been really welcome. It's not often we can say we had a dry winter here in Scotland.  The garden this last couple of days really seems to be coming through the other end of what seems like an eternity!

I commented the other day that whilst the temperatures are rising and the rain falls - it really does seem as if you can hear the garden grow.  Around the garden, the usual suspects are gearing up.  The Camellias buds are almost burst, the Magnolia stellata has the teensiest glimmer of white showing beneath those furry grey buds.  Most of the trees and shrubs have only just started breaking bud, with the usual slow coaches waiting their turn.

The soil now is reasonably moist and as most of the plants that thrive here are reliant on such conditions, they have began romping away over the last few day.

Buds, berries and a bit of colour by way of the new foliage on Berberis thunbergii Pink Glow.
Berberis thunbergii Pink Glow

It was a bit of a hit or miss as I popped out between showers to capture a few shots and almost missed this.  Leucothoe fontanesiana Whitewater, more commonly grown as a low spreading shrub.  Growing on the fence round the back of the kitchen extention as a climber - bursting with buds all over.

Leucothoe fontanesiana Whitewater

Look what else I spotted, this honeysuckle, Lonicera periclymenum Scentsation, is a beauty and generally blooms early in the year but given the recent conditions I'm surprised to see it budding up quite so soon.


I finally finished edging the last border with stone this winter - I opted to grow G. nivalis around the entire edge, the border having been widened in some spots, leaves me room for one or two newbies at some point.  Hostas, which have not been marked, will determine how much room I have once they are up and about but I need to wait for them to appear first.  I also need to find a replacement for Tiarella Spring Symphony - devoured by vine weevil larvae, it's gone!  I no longer have the appetite to save plants that are attacked.  Most of the Heuchera have gone over the last couple of weeks.  Only a few remain.

Primula denticulata Alba

The fresh green foliage of Aconitum Gletscheris is paired with a good sized clump of Primula denticulata Alba and will be joined with white narcissus - I can't remember if these are Thalia or Tresambles.  Either way, this area will be very pretty just as soon as those daffs are out.  Leafing out on the trellising are Actinidia kolomikta and Lonicera periclymenum Sweet Sue - the Enkianthus to the right is also just coming into leaf.  The Ligularia will come away and hide the gargantuan Primula foliage for the remainder of the year.  It's the only thing I dislike about these plants.

In the opposite corner, the red stemmed Cornus is only just beginning to break it's buds, I will cut this back at some point during the week.  Meanwhile another Aconitum, A Stainless Steel and the bronzed tinged foliage of Aquilegia vulgaris Purple Emperor are looking great.  Some Fritillaria meleagris will bloom first and Primula vulgaris to the left are also just about to bloom.

Foliage - Aconitum and Aquilegia

Nearby, fresh sumptuous foliage of Dicentra spectabalis - yes I know it's new name but other than remembering it is Lamp, something or other, Dicentra will do for now.  The swords from Iris pseudacorus variegata, new last year and never flowered are just beginning to take off.  I'm not entirely sure if the Iris like this spot or not, they seem to spread outwards rather than upwards, leaving bare spots in the centre.  I'll give them this year to redeem themselves.
Dicentra Spectablis

Another pretty little corner right now, planted up last autumn when I extended the Mahonia bed.  I saw the combination of Blue pulmonaria and yellow daffs on someone's blog but can't remember who's.  If it was yours please let me know, I'd love to give you credit and a thank you for the inspiration.  The Tete a Tete were added a few weeks back.  It's quite a windy spot and Hellebore, Lady something or other (I have lost the label) has not been happy.  It seems to be picking up now and a few blooms have appeared.  My ceramic toadstools have been brought out from storage too.
Pulmonaria Blue Ensign and Narcissus Tete a Tete

Both Heuchera to the left, Marmalade and Binoche have not yet been checked to see if they have suffered the same fate as the others, they certainly don't look like they have.....so far!  

Under the Acer, Narcissus Jet Fire, cope remarkably well receiving very little light.  The Acers are really quite late into leaf this year.   I hadn't intended including any blooms this post, but those I have included are more than likely to be gone by the time bloom day comes along on the 15th.

Narcissus Jet Fire
Rosettes of foliage from the Candelabra Primula in crisp, health and getting bigger by the day.  These are last years seedlings filling one of the voids created by the widening of the bed.


Appearing only in the last day or two, the bronzed new foliage of Viburnum sargentii Onondaga is a welcome sight.  I moved this shrub when it was dormant and glad to see it paid no heed.

Virburnum sargentii Onondaga
The grey, almost purple hints in the foliage of Polemonium yezoense Purple Rain has just reminded me that I must remember to look out for the Japanese painted ferns, I want to move them, once I can find them that is!  I have a rough idea of where they are but don't want to go digging around for them.
Polemonium yezoense Purple Rain and Narcissus Tete a Tete
How's this for paeony foliage?  Comparing to all the others, this one is well on and is already growing up through it's supports.  Paeonies are one of my all time favourite blooms and I could not imagine having a garden without them.  

It's not often I get the pleasure of such perfect Lupin foliage at this time of the year.  Where are the slugs and snails?  A sign of the prolonged cold weather?  Touch wood, as I tap on the side of my head, I haven't spoke too soon.
Fresh Lupin foliage
The golden foliage of Corydalis Berry Exciting is just amazing right now.  If only I had bought more than one pot of it.  This would have been useful in other spots around the garden.  On checking with the GC where I purchased it, they are not sure if it will be back in stock anytime soon. 
Corydalis Berry Exciting
I moved the Pagoda dogwood, Cornus alternifolia Argentea, in Autumn and I had hoped that I managed to bring some of the Corydalis along with it.  Mission accomplished!  I can also see in the picture, what looks like a Primula seedling.  This Cornus is always the last shrub to come into leaf, therefore important to have some interest round about to draw the eye from those bare stems.  The extended cold snap, I think has allowed them to hang around just a bit longer than they normally would. 
Corydalis malkensis and C. solida Beth Evans 

New last spring. a pretty looking Corydalis I feared had disappeared.  I planted them in the ground and they promptly died back almost immediately, they hadn't even bothered to bloom.  It's been a long wait to see if they survived.  

Corydalis solida First Kiss

The rather alien looking Euphorbia griffithii Fireglow, bought new for the front garden last autumn.  I look forward to seeing this grow after seeing it in so many of your gardens.

Euphorbia griffithii Fireglow
As I toddle around the garden this afternoon, prioritizing jobs for the remainder of the holiday weekend and note that the only two areas left to weed and tidy are the most awkward in the garden. Why oh why did I leave them til last? 

Finally, a great big thank you to Helene (Graphicality-UK) down there in London, who very kindly sent me up some of her beloved Trillium babies last year.  Amongst other things, these beauties were the ones I longed to see come up this spring.  Having previously failed with a rather expensive Trillium before, I was truly apprehensive about how they would do.  I followed her instructions to the letter.  Sadly though the Arisaema doesn't appear to have faired so well!

Trillium cuneatum babies
 Thanks for reading and wishing you all a Happy Easter whether it's out in the garden or not.

33 comments:

  1. Great post, its so nice to see everything coming through, all that fresh foliage and flowers doing their thing, I spent quite a bit of today looking at what's coming through in the troughs and pots and seeing what has moved successfully :)

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    1. Me too Rona, still a few sound asleep - well hopefully they are and not dead!

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  2. Waking up indeed! Things certainly look fresh and happy in your garden just now - love the corydalis and dicentra (ha!) foliage :)

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    1. Yes, it's lovely to see things looking so fresh. Today we had weather in the high teens - it was summer!

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  3. Oh all sorts of exciting stirrings Angie. Your plants look as if they have lapped up all that rain and are smiling with contentment. Oh what a shame about your tiarella and heucheras. I've had problems with vine weevil too when I've planted tiarellas and heucheras in pots but so far they have steered clear of those in the ground. I hope that you enjoy the Easter weekend. I wonder if gardening fits in your plans :)

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    1. I think I see those vine weevils in the ground because I have none in pots Anna. I kind of persevered before but not now. My only issue is now what will they go for!

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  4. Looking good. I love the new fresh look of foliage at this time of year, before the pests have had a chance to get their act together! Happy Easter Angie.

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    1. Speaking of pests, I harvested, if that's the correct work, half a dozen ladybirds from my neighbours hedge this afternoon and promptly stuck them on the roses. No sign of aphids yet but if I can be one step ahead of them it should help.

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  5. What a delightful visit to your garden via this blog post Angie. So much colour, and i love the warmth the bronze tinted Aqualegia & yelli Corydalis give to the border.

    I did have Pulmonaria Blue Ensign & Primula Veris in my March End of Month View, but suspect that will have been too recent to have been your inspiration.

    Happy Easter & enjoy the gardening.

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    1. If in never find out who, I'll give you the credit Julieanne :)

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  6. The Pulmonaria and Narcissus 'Tete a Tete' is a fantastic combination. Also I really like that Corydalis, I've never seen one with such large flowers. I usually grow Corydalis lutea.

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    1. I've steered clear from the Corydalis lutea Jason as I read somewhere long ago that it can get everywhere and don't fancy it spreading quite so widely. The large flowers are a trick of the camera I'm afraid, they are off similar size to all the others I grow.

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  7. How wonderful! I could almost hear your garden growing from across the world myself when I read your post and viewed your beautiful photos. As gardens never sleep here, we don't experience the same kind of dramatic awakening you do in spring, although I've been caught up by the joy of seeing new blooms appear too. (The first Agapanthus buds have shown up here already!) I love your Corydalis, which is difficult to impossible to grow here.

    Happy Easter!

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    1. Agapanthus......you just reminded me I had better check on mine in my neighbours greenhouse - I think I should be able to bring them out now. Glad you appreciate the wakening up. I think that would be the only thing I would miss should I ever win the lottery and move to sunnier climes.

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  8. Beautiful - all the fresh foliage. You have some nice Corydalis - must have some new. I will look for it when I'm in Britain next time.
    We have a lot of problems with the vine wheevil in my area, Heucheras only grow in the soil in the garden, not in pots. They have killed them all. A lot of foliage of different plants is demaged, very bad. When it becomes a bit warmer, I buy nemathodes for the whole garden, a lot of money, but must have. Each spring and autumn I do this. Whish you a happy easter and good weather for going out!

    Sigrun

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    1. I take it then that you can't source Corydalis over there Sigrun. I've never considered using the nematodes before, maybe I should.

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  9. So many gorgeous things Angie, lots to make the heart sing. You do really well with your succession planting, keeping the interest going and hiding unsightly leaves. That's something I really need to start getting a grip of this year.

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    1. More luck with the succession planting than planning Janet. It was something I never gave a thought to until I started reading blogs and seeing what others do.

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  10. Lovely to see all that healthy new growth. I must get myself a peony this year - do you happen to know any red ones? I had one as a child and would love to have one in my garden now. The Corydalis looks great too - another plant I have not tried yet. I am pleased to report that the Dicentra you sent me is just poking up through the soil - I was worried it had disappeared.

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    1. Yes, mines has just started popping up too Annette. You can just make it out in the picture of the gold leafed Corydalis. It was some of the roots I lifted for you and I just popped a tiny wee bit in and hoped for the best!
      The wee treasures you send me are up and about too, you will see them on bloom day.

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  11. I enjoyed seeing all your lovely Corydalis. I've tried a couple of different ones, but the one with the yellow flower is the only one that has survived here (flourished, in fact, it seeds around aggressively). Happy Easter!

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    1. As I said above Alison, I have never tried the yellow one and for the exact reason you mention. That's the trouble with a plant that gets a tad too happy don't you think.

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  12. Happy Easter Angie. It is very nice to see all this foliage and blooms when we still have snow on the ground. We should catch up in a few weeks.

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  13. Just shows how foliage can be as beautiful as flowers especially young foliage

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  14. It's all looking very healthy! You're just a bit ahead of me--both with your plants and your precipitation. We have some rain in the forecast now, so that will help. :) Happy Easter!

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  15. Spring finally seems to be speeding up, having stuck at the same point for AGES! The last few days have seen so much new growth, but you are further on than us, Angie, even though you are so much further North, Your Aquilegia is heaps bigger, Dicentra (yes, still Dicentra to me too!) and lots of other things. The Corydalis are lovely, and new to me, the golden yellow of 'Berry Exciting' is fab ! Happy gardening !

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  16. What an amazing amount of new growth you have, it is all so beautiful, hardly any need for flowers! It is so much warmer today, I'm sure all the plants will be responding.

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  17. This was a feast for the eyes. You are wise to wait until everything is up to add things. I'm noticing a lot of crowding as the season goes on.

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  18. It is all looking lovely with so many spring treasures to enjoy and so much promise. I am mad on that Corydalis First Kiss, I haven' t seen that before. And Berry Exciting is amazing too.

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  19. It is all looking lovely with so many spring treasures to enjoy and so much promise. I am mad on that Corydalis First Kiss, I haven' t seen that before. And Berry Exciting is amazing too.

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  20. Hi Angie, I'm back to the blog-world and to the garden world after a 6 or more months of hiatus. My blog address has also changed. It's so nice to read your blog after such a long time but got two questions: 1. how do you keep your garden so weed free especially from those deep tap rooted weeds? 2. How do you remember these names!? I could not even pronounce most of them :-). Amazing memory and an amazing garden - both you have :-)

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  21. Great to see everything "springing" into life Angie, I have found a lot of snails in hibernation mode in the last few days and think they are only just waking up in this warmer weather SO THE WAR BEGINS !!!!

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  22. I can't believe how dark and fertile your soil is, and you have so many things flowering and budding already. Your garden is further along than mine!

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