Six on Saturday | Autumnal beginnings

What a week! Brilliant sunny, almost summer day on Monday became a winter’s day by Thursday with strong winds, hail and cold temperatures. Poor plants! Having basked blissfully in the sunshine at the beginning of the week they were tossed around mercilessly by the end. So these photos were taken early in the week.

(1) First up are the naughty sheep that keep escaping from the fields into the farmyard next door and because the farmer leaves the gate open most of the time they have wandered into my ‘wild garden’ and helped themselves to some of the plants on the Cornish hedge and the small bed next to the oil tank. Geraniums, Eryngium, Hebe and Osteospermums seem to have been favourites, though lavender was left alone, but the spider plants that have been outdoors all summer took the brunt of it having most of the leaves munched!

(2) Aeonium ‘Zwartkop is a branching shrub with magnificent, almost black-purple, succulent, polished leaf rosettes with a lime-green centre, at the ends of its branches. These spend the summer outdoors on the ‘Zen Patio’, but come winter I bring them into the conservatory, though this year I am tempted to leave one pot outdoors under the shelter of the potting bench with some polycarbonate on the top to keep out most of the rain as last year they suffered indoors.

(3) A recent new addition to the dappled shade bed is this Hardy Geranium ‘Anne Thomson” which is a lovely deep magenta colour with a black centre. Hardy geraniums do well here as they are mostly left alone by the S&S as long as I find the right place for them. Two or three have been moved around the garden until I found their happy spot!

(4) Another plant now flowering in the same shady bed are the Cyclamen which were planted a few years ago. They are spreading as leaves are appearing everywhere under the Kilmarnock Willow tree, but not as many flowers yet.

(5) I have mentioned this Eryngium before. Mine appears to be one variety that has the most disgusting smell! During summer when it is flowering the heads are covered in flies – not butterflies! Now though the purple stems look quite nice. I thought I had removed this from the raised bed but I obviously didn’t get it all out. They do tend to have quite deep tap roots! I’ll have another attempt at removing it next spring.

(6) Pelargoniums. I like these plants and their many different flowers, but some of these were quite old in flower years so last year I took a lot of cuttings and started many of them as new plants, they have been slow to grow for some reason, but now they are looking good. I kept them on a bench this year, in full sun.

As always, if you want a peek over other people’s garden walls then please pop over to our host, the lovely Jon, AKA ‘The Propagator’ where you find links to many more wonderful garden enthusiasts from all over the world.

See here for the participant’s guide.

Six on Saturday


  1. Nice deep geranium. I left my aeonium out through the beast from the East and it survived fine. It suffered more last year for being brought inside. It didn’t get as much light and lost a few limbs from being knocked. They went into pots and have rooted to make more so I may leave some out and some in.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Yes, that’s what I am thinking of doing. Hedge my bets! And if there is a really cold spell then I can easily bring them indoors.

      1. I’d get rid of mine but I’ve made it suffer so much I feel mean composting it after all I’ve put it through.

  2. I’ll have to stop moaning about SandS. They’re nothing compared to rabbits and sheep! I’m waiting for my Aeoniums to grow upwards. are yours in very big pots? Love the Pelargoniums.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Haha… the sheep were somewhat unexpected visitors! My Aeoniums are actually cuttings from one plant as it was just growing taller and taller with the one head! I chopped the head off and planted it, along with sections of the stem. Some rotted, but others took and branched out. The pots are not very big.

  3. That No:2 is a lovely colour against the paler green leaves. I only grew Eryngium once. We could smell it from the other side of the garden. I am hoping my little cyclamen will spread themselves around soon.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Ah, you must have had the same one as me. Apparently Miss Willmott’s Ghost doesn’t smell but it’s silver rather than blue. I might try that one.

    2. bushboy says:

      Loved this peek over the fence Jude

  4. Catherine says:

    I think it’s the naughty farmer who needs a telling off for leaving the gate open. We have cattle behind our fence, which is getting terribly old. I hope it never bows down – imagine a herd of cattle in the garden. Eeek.

    The Aeonium ‘Zwartkop is fabulous. My daughter’s neighbour in Australia has the most wonderful collection and I do wish that I’d taken time to get some photographs of them.

    I will have to buy some front of border plants and your Geranium ‘Anne Thomson” I believe will fit the bill. It’s a beauty – it’s not going onto my wish list, that one is going onto my shopping list.

  5. Murtagh's Meadow says:

    The weather is so up and down isn’t it. We have frost forecast again tonight and then tomorrow night it is supposed to be 12 degrees. I think plants and animals are confused. I had a frog croaking in the pond last week and as I think I mentioned in a previous six on Saturday my spring purple sprouting broccoli is already producing! Hope the sheep haven’t done too much damage.

    1. Heyjude says:

      I only have plants in that part of the garden that I can bear to lose, most are from cuttings. I’m surprised rabbits haven’t eaten them!

  6. Su Leslie says:

    Sorry to hear about the sheep; but I guess if the farmer leaves the gate open … grr.
    I bought a few little assorted pelargoniums last spring and they’ve gone mental, especially the rose geranium. I bought them for the lovely scented leaves and the flowers aren’t as pretty as yours.

    1. Heyjude says:

      I actually prefer the scented leaved pelargoniums now. Some have very pretty flowers too. There are some in #2 with the aeoniums.

      1. Su Leslie says:

        Ah yes; they’re more like mine. I love the rose scented, but it’s a bit over-powering, and lime has become my new favourite

  7. restlessjo says:

    Pelargoniums are another of those things I think of as granny plants but I love the Aeoniums. And the naughty sheep 🙂 🙂

    1. Heyjude says:

      You’re thinking of the bedding plants, these pellies are much more interesting. I would think they’d do well on your roof terrace. As would succulents. Do you have any?

      1. restlessjo says:

        Nope. A few cacti in a trough at the front of the house, with rocks and shells 🙂 🙂

        1. Heyjude says:

          You should get some aloes and agaves, great structural plants and easy to look after. Look good with the bougainvillea.

        2. restlessjo says:

          They’re a bit spikey for me. I was talking Spring bulbs with Lisa yesterday 🙂 🙂 But I do like Aeonium.

        3. Heyjude says:

          You don’t have to stroke them!

        4. Heyjude says:

          Echeveria are nice too and not spiky.

        5. restlessjo says:

          Have to look that one up. And seriously… I’m not a spikey person 🙂 🙂

  8. And we thought we had problems with the lizards eating Mr ET’s seedlings. 🙂 That geranium is a beauty.

  9. Tina Schell says:

    Oh my, they are quite the nibblers aren’t they?! But they really are oh so sweet looking, no? Perhaps the farmer will offer the replace the plants! We had a similar swing in temps this week with 2 days of low humidity glorious sunshine followed by 2 days of summery hot heat. What’s up with mother nature?!?!

  10. BeckyB says:

    I was beginning to worry about the late summer heat, but now I am missing it – the winds are dreadful here

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