Six on Saturday | Annual Round-up

As it is coming to the end of October and the end of BST we are heading into the worst months of the year (November, December and January) as far as I am concerned. Winter for me is a time to plan ahead, redesign borders, choose plants for next year and dream of spring and the arrival of bulbs.Β  It’s also a time to analyse what went well and what can be deemed a failure in the garden this year. So here goes.

(1) Success. Planting some of my Cosmos seedlings in the Bee & Butterfly bed. The tall white flowers looked gorgeous with the Verbena ‘Lollipop’. A planting I will repeat next year.

(2) Success. The new dappled shade bed beneath the Hazel and Willow trees. Well, mainly the Hazel which was severely pruned from the base this summer to reveal a rather nice twisted trunk. Several Heucheras were added this year along with Nepeta and an orange Geum. They seem to have melded nicely together. Forget-me-nots will arrive in spring along with crocuses.

(3) Semi-Success. Fuchsias in pots in the courtyard. Although not as bad as last year when they were attacked by rust, they haven’t grown as well as I had hoped. In spring I shall repot them and prune quite hard to try and make them bushier plants. They look ok here, but several pots didn’t perform as well.

(4) Semi-Success. Spring bulbs. I planted a lot of bulbs last autumn, especially Narcissi in the raised bed as well as tulips in pots. I have not lifted any so we’ll have to see if this is a repeat success next spring. Other than the spring display I am still not satisfied with this bed. It might be cleared next spring and become another herb bed.

(5) Success. The Cornish Hedge. Nettles, brambles and grass were removed last autumn and the wall rebuilt with the help of my son. I planted it mainly with cuttings from the garden and I have been pleased to see this former wild and ugly area looking really good this summer. The taller plants are not as successful as the wind bashes them down, but on the whole it’s doing well. Some tweaking to do in spring.

Ox-eye daisies, Erigeron

(6) Semi-Success. Patio pots. I grew the rest of the Cosmos seedlings in pots and although I loved the flowers they were too tall and looked very straggly at the base. I shall go back to the shorter Cosmos next year, and rethink what else I want in my pots -more annuals maybe.

Hopefully next year won’t be as difficult as this one for getting out and about and visiting nurseries in particular. It’s been a tough one and I am very grateful for my little plot of land that has kept me busy and sane. I shall be taking a break from the SoS for a while as there is never anything interesting in my garden over the next few months, but hope to be back with the Prop and all his friends in January. I will of course be checking in on what everyone else is up to.

See here for the participant’s guide.

Six on Saturday


  1. restlessjo says:

    Such a busy little spot, your garden, Jude, and it’s looking great! How long have you been there now? 3 years or more? Love the cosmos and your Cornish Hedge looks pretty. I’m told bulbs don’t do well here, but I haven’t got round to buying any yet. Couldn’t hurt to try. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚
    Conflicted this week because we’re in semi-lockdown for the weekend, while the weather is glorious, but from Tuesday rain is forecast. Now normally I’d be happy, but I was planning a small birthday jaunt… and I can’t do it this weekend. 😦 Never mind- there’s a nice restaurant in OlhΓ‘o I haven’t tried yet. Have a good weekend!

    1. Heyjude says:

      Wild here this weekend, though sunny at the moment. Surely you can eat out locally? Or were you thinking of a little getaway? The news here is so grim, but at least the grockles should be gone after this weekend.

      1. restlessjo says:

        I had a trip into the Alentejo in mind, but I think I’ll have to defer it. 😦 πŸ™‚

        1. Heyjude says:

          Best to stay at home. Looks like we’ll not have a choice. 😭

        2. restlessjo says:

          😦 😦

  2. bushboy says:

    Are you saving seeds or are they just growing from dropped seeds? I have to have my bulbs in pots as it is too wet and they rot. The original bulbs I bought here I put in the ground and lost the lot after a few wet years.My cuttings from this winter have sprouted in the containers I have on my kitchen window sill in water. I put into pots during the week and will put into the garden once they are happy in soil. I have built a new garden which I am just building up with compost and shall be planting out next week. Happy gardening Jude πŸ™‚

    1. Heyjude says:

      I don’t have much success with seeds, other than those plants that easily self-sow. Not much room left for anything new now, so it’s either pots or a move πŸ˜‚

  3. It’s been lovely to see the progress of your Cornish hedge. Looking good now. πŸ™‚

    1. Heyjude says:

      It will be interesting to see how it develops next year. I’m just leaving everything to die down naturally.

  4. fredgardener says:

    Well done ! Everything looks great in your garden, whether it’s a success or a semi-success, I find everything very nice and successful!

    1. Heyjude says:

      Thanks Fred. No major failures this year, though several plants were lost / died.

      1. fredgardener says:

        Like all of us … the result is very nice!

  5. We shouldn’t say that looking back is a good thing but looking forward in the short term defininitely isn’t a good thing just now, if that makes sense. Never mind, the gardens go on regardless and yours is so pretty. A good year, Jude.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Thanks GG. Lost enthusiasm now πŸ˜•

  6. I love the top of your stone wall and the bottom of your Hazel – success indeed! What is BST? British Standard Time? Our Daylight Savings Time ends also ends in the wee hours tomorrow – an extra hour of sleep, a bight brighter in the mornings, much darker in the early evenings….

    1. Heyjude says:

      British Summer Time. Dark just after 5 pm now and I hate it. Counting the days to the winter solstice!

  7. It all looks successful to me. My favourite is the dappled bed. I look forward to the return of your SoSs in the new year.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Thanks Graeme. That bed is my favourite too. Got a couple of Astrantia to plant there, but not sure whether to wait until spring.

  8. margaret21 says:

    I loved your Cornish hedge when you first showed it, so I’m happy it has another airing, and is one of your success stories.

    1. Heyjude says:

      I have planted some bits and pieces in the opposite wall, can’t call that a Cornish hedge, so it’ll be interesting to see that next year. My idea is to plant sempervivums along it, but I never got to the local succulent nursery this year.

      1. margaret21 says:

        Planning can be as much fun as doing!

        1. Heyjude says:

          Indeed. I have plans for work inside the house, but all these lockdowns are playing havoc on getting things done. I shall have plenty of time to redesign my kitchen 😏

        2. margaret21 says:

          πŸ˜‰ indeed!

  9. Catherine says:

    The fuchsias look beautiful in that photo, I hope you can get your others to grow as well as those. The Narcissi in the raised bed are so lovely, would you replant them elsewhere if you decide to lift them? I remember your Cornish Hedge – that’s a positive success! No matter how good an area looks, there’s always going to be a little bit of tweaking needed as some point or another. Most won’t notice it, only the gardener. 😊

    My garden has become exhausted of photo opportunities too. Here’s to a happier and safer new year for all of us.

    1. Heyjude says:

      I think I just need to prune the fuchsias back so they become bushy. And remove the ferns, so they are in separate pots. I’m not sure the narcissi will return, we’ll see 😊 they can stay in that bed even if I decide to remove the other plants. I would like another rhubarb plant, my old one rotted and I love rhubarb.

  10. Ann Mackay says:

    The Cornish hedge is lovely, and your bee and butterfly bed. I’m hoping to increase the bee and butterfly plants her next year. At the moment though, I’m feeling very frustrated by the wet weather because I still have lots to do before winter gets here. I’m joining you in hoping that we can get out easily to nurseries next year!

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