End of the month view – May 2012
After weeks of rain we then had two weeks of very hot weather – no wonder the weather is a popular topic of conversation in this country. The garden is full of lush growth although my light soil, after such mediterranean temperatures, is now like the sands of the desert. Already my one and only Astrantia is looking all droopy – it really does not like to dry out. Luckily many other plants are not so picky.
The plant star of this month is my Iris sibirica, planted where a mulch of gravel helps retain some moisture. It looks superb, tall but very neat and upright in growth. The flowers are a beautiful blue.
In the border behind the Iris is planted a Solanum crispum ‘Glasnevin’. It was slightly damaged over the winter but recovered quite quickly once I had cut off the dead bits. It is planted against a wooden post so is rather exposed. This variety is meant to be more hardy than ordinary Solanum crispum but I might well wrap it in fleece if we get a bad winter. I would like to preserve as much of the growth as possible.
In the same border are some bulbs I got in a sale at the end of last year.A member of the onion family it has attractive heads of loosely hanging cream flowers flushed with dark red. The colours are much brighter when you look inside the flower.
In the center of the rock garden sits the neat grey hummock that is Alyssum spinosum ‘Roseum’. It is a lovely dwarf shrub with tiny silver grey leaves and at this time of year it is covered in deep pink flowers.
Also in the rock garden is this bright blue Sisyrinchium.
The bottom of the garden has few flowers at the moment but lots of variety in foliage. There are a number of ferns and grasses that mix very well. Up on the right against the fence is Rosa ‘Ghislaine de Féligonde’.
She will be flowering shortly but when I looked closely I noticed her buds are covered with brown and green aphids. She is a tough Rose so I expect her to emerge unscathed though I am hoping for a plague of Ladybirds to eat the aphids.
Every time I find a Ladybird in the garden I deposit it on the Rose on the offchance that it will lay eggs – and that it and its voracious offspring will appreciate the food on the doorstep.
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