A Flowering Month – August
With my new Flower Farm project, I’ve become much more observant about what is flowering when. We follow a standard seasonal pattern generally, but with our climate being relatively mild I’m interested to see what the possibilities are. Here’s a mid August vase picked from a wander round the house gardens. Hellebore, scabiosa ‘black knight’, a new orange alstromeria, and euphorbia.
These annual scabiosa – or pincushion flower (a much nicer name) – were sown in December last year. They were slow to get going (leaving them stranded in their little trays for waaay too long did not help), but I’ve been impressed with how they have kept flowering through winter. They also gained me my first sale to a wedding florist after I posted a pic on Instagram… yay! I’ve just planted 100 more seeds today, will see if they go as well through spring and summer.
Pruned all the roses in the vineyard in one 1 1/2 hour stint. A job that I used to put off as I remember it taking a very long time. I must be getting more efficient – or perhaps a little more ruthless and less considering. But first I picked all the roses that were still flowering. This one is ‘Grand Nord’. A little tall for an end of row vineyard position, and in the summer the bronze beetles seem to find the buds particularly tasty, but for now it is blooming unbothered. Until I came along with the secateurs…
My small collection of euphorbias, all seedlings gleaned from a friend’s garden last summer, they have grown so much since then! The green flowers are quite welcome, as is the grey green foliage which picks well.
Ahh the smell of daphne. This daphne was one of my more optimistic unplanned nursery purchases, as I thought they wouldn’t do so well here. It has surprised me, and every winter it flowers it’s socks off. I’m happy it’s bigger now, as I can raid it more often. The flowers don’t last long inside but the smell more than makes up for it.
The early ‘spring’ (winter is probably more accurate) bulbs have all made their welcome entrance, starting with the paperwhites and the snowflakes. As close as we get to a snowflake here – although Mike insists it did snow here once, fleetingly, although you had to be looking out the window for the exact 3 seconds during which it took place. (I wasn’t).
And then there is the hellebores. I planted these for the first time two years ago, and was so enamoured with them that I bought some more darker ones this time last year.
I would like to build up more of a collection of these. I posted on a Facebook group about the small white form, and someone very kindly posted me ten seedlings… I do love those connections from complete gardening strangers! (Thanks Tina!).
It seems appropriate to finish on the freesias, which started blooming in earnest about a week ago, just near the end of August. These simple white ones are amongst my favourite. I was late planting all the ones I dug up last year so they are still to flower. But an extended season of freesias sounds just perfect to me. Actually I think I still have some in the fridge… I might plant them out tomorrow, will be interesting to see if they flower.