Potting shed summer party

(1000 Posts)

Following on from the Blooming into Flaming June thread and all others before it.

The potting shed is open for summer. Elderflower wine aplenty and room for all. Monty will be along later...

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Wed 04-Sep-13 19:51:09

I'm just getting round to watching Friday's GW. Ah, Monty.

funnyperson Wed 04-Sep-13 21:19:24

I saw the 'secret gardens of the salutation' in Sandwich today. Apparently the original gardens were Jekyll and Lutyens designs which then went to weed and jungle, but have now been restored. It was autumnal and seedy, but dahlias and bananas and bamboo and rudbeckia and echinacea and amaranthus caudatus were looking good in the tropical border- sounds quite similar to the border you were admiring at Great Dixter, maud. It certainely was food for thought- quite a lot of yellow and orange and maroon going on.
There were so many seed heads but I didn't dare take any, though I think it could have been helpful to have done some ...deadheading...
Sandwich is a pretty village and the stour valley walk is lovely in the summer sunshine.

There seems to be a lot of gardening related accidents happening. Be careful out there everyone; stop falling over!

Been eating figs off my little fig tree. They are very lovely.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Thu 05-Sep-13 07:35:08

I've been meaning to ask; how does one tell when figs are ripe? For the first time ever, I've got a few that look bug enough to eat. Very exciting!

That sounds like a delightful outing, funnyperson.

Bumbez Thu 05-Sep-13 12:23:38

maud they go much darker in colour and feel softer. I used to have a fig tree they are delicious.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Thu 05-Sep-13 12:43:09

Hmm. They've gone dark, but how do I gauge whether they're soft enough? How soft is soft?

Rhubarbgarden Thu 05-Sep-13 12:50:37

echt your staghorn fern sounds wonderful.

Bumbez thanks for sending the seeds! I'm not sure I dare go over to the property thread. I used to 'live' there before I moved out over here, and I already spend too much time on MN; I'm not sure I should risk getting sucked into kitchens and paint colours again...

Funnyperson those gardens sound beautiful. I've never been to that part of the world. I may have to organise a trip.

I got my mojo back yesterday and did five hours at my drawing board in the evening, and got my 'hot' colours planting plan finished. I shall go over it again tonight to check for successional colour and to spot any accidental clangers.

I fear it relies a bit too heavily on foliage rather than flowers, but the borders are relatively narrow, so by the time I've got in all the structural evergreens and front of border plants it doesn't leave much space for colourful perennials. I'm also trying to keep it simple with a reduced plant palette, as my planting plans in the past have suffered from too many varieties, resulting in a 'bitty' overall look.

Lots of lime, dark red and yellow foliage though so hopefully it should still be quite colourful.

cantspel Thu 05-Sep-13 13:24:00

My dad came to visit yesterday and bought me 2 lovely hibiscus for the garden.

Bertha my fig tree has gone mad this year and i even needed to cut it back as it was blocking the side path.Masses of fruit on it but as i dont like figs the birds have been having a treat.

funnyperson Thu 05-Sep-13 20:32:13

I love figs.

I am growing 1 week greens in the on call room. They germinated in 2 days.

I don't think the Salutation gardens were unmissable, but very pleasant if combined with the cliff/valley/village walk.

There is an orange/chocolate rudbeckia

rhubarb what you say about lots of different plants vs block planting is a constant dilemma also whether to block plant or whether to go for repeats/ symmetry.

I'm trying to decide whether to continue with the white/green border on the shady side, mirrored by the pink/deep purple/blue/maroon/lime green border on the sunny side, or whether to continue with more or less randomness whilst finding room for antique magenta roses, alliums christophii, crambe etc which will arrive in the autumn.

Its all a fantasy really as currently I have 1 week greens and neon lighting....sigh. I expect the poor plants in the home garden are dried out.

Maud by trial and error I found that my figs are ready when a mix of purple and green. My first few I left longer to go all dark purple but found the birds were getting there first and the flesh was starting to turn.

Cantspel I can't believe you leave them! If you don't like them fresh, have you tried them cooked? Split the tops, stuff in a bit of goats cheese, wrap in Parma ham and cook in the oven for 10 minutes. Amazing.

cantspel Fri 06-Sep-13 11:42:13

Bertha i dont like cheese either. i only keep the fig tree as i like the shape of it.

Rhubarbgarden Fri 06-Sep-13 13:42:20

funny I think it all depends on what sort of 'look' you're going for, if any. A hotch potch of many varieties can look great and very cottagey. Most plantspersons gardens look like this because they tend to be collectors rather than arrangers. Block planting looks fantastic in small, city gardens or conversely in big open spaces, a la Piet Oudolf. The clients I'm currently working for want their garden to look 'designed' and they are very style aware, being heavily involved in the design process from start to finish. So this planting plan needs to have a restrained plant palette with lots of repeats.

I like the sound of your colour themed borders. My own garden has always been of the hotch-potch plant collector variety, but when I redesign my borders I will probably do some colour theming. I'm certainly going to find space for the antique roses/crambe/allium combo we were lusting over at Sissinghurst!

MousyMouse Fri 06-Sep-13 14:51:15

my fig tree has lots of fruits. but they don't look at all like the ones in the shop. they are green but quite plump.
I wonder if I should just harvest them?

the roses will be delivered (bare root) end of november. still don't quite know where to put them. thinking of one in a pot by the front door (south facing) and one in the back next to the rosa hansestadt rostock as it's in the lightest part of the garden.

what do you think?

funnyperson Sat 07-Sep-13 02:40:13

mouseymouse one is supposed to be able to plant bare root roses into the ground but I've tended to put them in a pot in a sheltered spot to overwinter and plant them out in the spring.

MousyMouse Sat 07-Sep-13 10:28:47

good point funny that would give me time to ponder where to put them.

Bearleigh Sat 07-Sep-13 22:41:40

I have hibiscus encryption can't spell: which varieties are they ?

Talking of which ... I have a deep maroon hibiscus that was already in when we moved in and flowered well for the first two years but the last two although it has buds and I can see the colour of the petals they don't actually open. It isn't very big so I expect it's not very old and I don't know why it's not flowering. Any ideas? I don't feed it. Maybe I should.

I assumed last year it was sulking at the weather, but it hasn't that excuse this year!

Bearleigh Sat 07-Sep-13 22:43:24

Grr at iPhone autocorrect. Should have been hibiscus envy and cantspel. Apologies!

funnyperson Sat 07-Sep-13 23:32:50

My hibiscus has buds which haven't opened yet. The neighbours' ones, which are in flower, are all south facing and in the sun

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Sun 08-Sep-13 11:56:22

What a coincidence. I was selling hibiscus yesterday.

I was just walking through Lidl to get to the car park and accidentally bought two packs of tulip bulbs. An absolute steal at £1.79 for 8 or 10.

cantspel Sun 08-Sep-13 17:53:51

There are hibiscus hamabo which a la lovely pink blush colour with red at the base of each petal. They are in flower now and if the rain ever stops then i need to get them planted.

Bearleigh hibiscus like to be watered well during summer and a simple feed of bonemeal in the spring.

Maud i had the same accident last weekend but they were on offer of 4 packs for £5 so it would be criminal not to.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Sun 08-Sep-13 19:14:34

Oh, Hamabo is lovely. I was very tempted to buy one yesterday.

Four packs for a fiver? As you say, not to buy them would be criminally negligent!

I managed a whole afternoon at Wisley without buying anything.

::polishes halo::

funnyperson Sun 08-Sep-13 20:19:11

Did you not even have the cream tea?

The air and light are beginning to feel autumnal rather than summery.
I was thinking about Monty's comment in one programme: about plants and light quality in relation to how crocosmia glow in the autumn light. I wonder what other semi-transparent plants would shimmer in the autumn light.
I would like a fiery red acer I think.

Thank you for the seeds Bumbez. smile

My gardening escapades got rained off today. Was happily planting out spring cabbage and kale until the heavens opened.

I must accidentally pass through Lidl at some point this week too. I am need of tulip bulbs.

funnyperson Sun 08-Sep-13 20:22:43

a small tree, like this
http://www.arborday.org/treeguide/treeDetail.cfm?ID=29
I don't know what variety it is and I am looking for scarlet red rather than purple

funnyperson Sun 08-Sep-13 20:23:18

Oh dear I havent posted my seeds yet
Or done the laundry.

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