Six on Saturday | odd one out

“I appreciate the misunderstanding I have had with Nature over my perennial border. I think it is a flower garden; she thinks it is a meadow lacking grass, and tries to correct the error”

~ Sara Stein

Well spring hit us with a sledgehammer this month with rain and sunshine setting the plants in competition to outdo one another. Each and every one on steroids it appears. Every dry moment is spent in the garden, dead-heading, tying in the scramblers and the ramblers, seeking and destroying the S&S and endlessly pulling out weeds, especially the horrid bindweed which loves to snap off leaving its destructive creeping roots in the ground.

So without further ado, here are my six in the garden this week.

  1. In the raised beds (which were intended for herbs and veggies) is this lovely variegated Sage. Getting a bit leggy now, but at this time of year the colours of the new growth are so gorgeous.
  2. Another one in the raised beds is this lovely Thyme – the centre got damaged in the cold weather this year so I have cut it down there, whether or not that encourages new growth I do not know, but the rest of it is flowering prettily now.
  3. My third plant is also in the raised bed, but grown for ornamental purposes not edible, though there are a couple of varieties of chives also around. This is Allium ‘Purple Sensation’. I planted about 20 bulbs in the autumn of 2016 but only half a dozen have flowered. Right plant, wrong place perhaps.
  4. Moving round to the Gravel garden and the stone wall you will find some Campanula, I have no idea what sort they are. I bought them from Ludlow market several years ago and they just keep on coming back (and also finding their way into other pots too). When I moved I removed it from its container and split it up with three patches around the wall. Slowly spreading, which I am happy about.
  5. One of the many hardy Geraniums already in the garden is this pink one. No name. Again I split it up and planted bits around the garden. It does seem to be taking over though so I think some of it will have to be removed after this year’s flowering.
  6. Now you may have noticed a sort of colour theme going on in my garden. It is true that I lean towards the pink / blue / purpley tones (what I often describe as the ‘bruised’ look) and when I had only a tiny patio space I only had these colours plus white and the occasional pop of orange. Last summer I wanted to get rid of half the lawn and digging was so hard that I used cardboard to kill off the grass and then I bought a couple of black plastic raised beds, chucked in a load of compost and then topped it up with old compost out of the tulip pots, sprinkled a packet of bee friendly seeds on it and covered it in mesh to stop the neighbour’s cat from using it as a toilet. With my poor rating in seed germination I was not expecting much. To my utmost surprise I ended up with a bed full of Eschscholzia californica (Californian Poppies), Phacelia tanacetifolia (fiddleneck), Nigella and two types of Marigolds. And now this…  Erysimum cheiri  – common wallflower in bright ORANGE!

See here for the participant’s guide.

Six on Saturday


  1. fredgardener says:

    Wonderful photos Jude! The variegated sage is incredible, I have never seen such a thing.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Thank you Fred. The sage is usually white and green except at this time of year when the pink appears. Quite beautiful. I have taken some cuttings so hope to have some new plants, but I’m not like the Prop. I just snip a bit off and stick it into some compost and hope for the best!

  2. March Picker says:

    Ah, such beauty! Your posts and similar ones are why I love Six on Saturday. From that variegated sage to the gold wallflower, wondrous all.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Thank you for your lovely comment MP 🙂

  3. I layered my variegated sage a couple of years ago as it had got very woody, despite pruning. It worked well and cost nothing! The Geranium flower is stunning, some of them have such amazing patterns in them.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Layered? As in pinned it to the ground to form new roots? I have taken some cuttings, but I simply snip off the top and stick it into compost. Sometimes this works 🙂

  4. pommepal says:

    So colourful you must be in gardeners heaven with so much beauty around you jude. I do have a weakness for orange and yellow flowers so love the wallflower. Blooming marvellous

  5. cavershamjj says:

    The most annoying, depressing even, sound in gardening is that light, muffled pop when the bindweed breaks off underground, you know you haven’t got it all.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Too true 😦

  6. Your six sound lovely – the sage is on my list to look out for and your idea for the raised beds sounds so sensible! Are you particularly sunny down there? I have never managed to grow a Californian poppy here in shady north London. Lovely to read your blog. Best wishes, Julie

    1. Heyjude says:

      Mostly misty down here! But when the sun shines it is wonderful. I have quite moist soil and also get a lot of wind in the garden as it is exposed and on the downs.

  7. Chloris says:

    The campanula is Campanula portenschlagiana sometimes called the Wall Bellflower because it grows happily in walls. Once you’ve got it, it stays around.
    I love that veined geranium.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Ah, thank you for that Chloris. I saw some growing on walls in Mousehole where there was no soil at all! I might transplant some of mine to another wall (currently full of weeds) and see if it can romp away there.

  8. You and Tish make me long to have been born a gardener instead of lazy and a plant-murderer. I love the sage – it’d look great in a salad – or a vase. And “bruised look” is a great description. I’m so glad you have your garden now and that it’s rewarding you so beautifully for thought and hard work. This challenge serves your readers well.

    1. Heyjude says:

      You were once a market gardener! That’s pretty good going. Funny thing is I hardly every pick the sage, should do, as you say it would look good in a salad.

      1. I was a market garden labourer. Not the same thing!

        1. Heyjude says:

          Oh, OK. If you insist. 😀

  9. I love all of those flowers – your garden must look lovely. We have campanula in our UK garden and it grew everywhere. As fast as I removed clumps of it from between cracks, another lot was appearing in the gravel. The bees loved it though.

    1. Heyjude says:

      I might try an replant some of mine in the wall in the car park area, it would be nice if that could get covered.

      1. They grow anywhere and everywhere in my experience – and very prolifically too! 🙂

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