Six on Saturday | Call this Summer?

Wind, rain, sunshine, rainbows, temperatures ranging from 20°C to a mere 15°C – short sleeves, long sleeves. A true British summer. After cleaning up after the odd northerly wind which bent things back in ways they are not used to we then got the usual south-westerlies blowing through. Neither of which makes photographing flowers in the garden easy.

So this week’s six are the hardy geraniums. I love these plants – cut them back hard in the autumn and up they pop in the spring. If you find the right place that is, several of mine have been moved around to find their sweet spot and one or two still have to find it. A huge bonus is that they not only come in many colours and sizes, but the S&S leave them alone and bees love them!

Famous gardener Margery Fish was once asked for the secret of gardening. She answered ‘The secret is, when in doubt plant a geranium!’

G. Oxonianum – I have several of these inherited so no names, different coloured pinks. One likes to self-sow all over the garden (possibly ‘Wargrave Pink’), sadly it is not the rather sweet white one which might be ‘Lace Time’.

Geranium sanguineum ‘Elke’ – still in a container as originally I had her in the shady front courtyard, she needs to come out and go into the ground where she should make a nice mound. Large deep pink flowers edged with white and middle sit just above a spreading mat of deeply divided leaves.

One that does make a nice mound is another Geranium sanguineumwhich might be ‘Max Frei’ I have several clumps around the gravel garden which is where I shall plant Elke. Its tiny leaves are small and narrowly divided. The bright flowers are slightly ruffled in appearance.

Geranium ‘Orion’ is reportedly a hybrid cross between G. ‘Brookside’ and G. himalayense ‘Gravetye’. It forms a vigorous clump with lots of large, saucer-shaped, blue flowers with violet veins and white centres. The foliage turns reddish in the autumn.

Another blue geranium is one I have grown from seed last year – the meadow cranesbill which is native to the UK and Europe and can sometimes be found growing in grass verges in parts of the countryside – Geranium pratense. It likes full sun. This grows quite tall and has mid-blue flowers with white veins, held over divided foliage.

Finally G Rozanne which is a sterile hybrid of Geranium himalayense x Geranium wallichianum ‘Buxton’s Variety’ makes a lovely clump with profuse large saucer-shaped blue-violet flowers with a white centre.  Similar to ‘Orion’ though slightly paler, it grows into a very large and tall plant and will happily scramble through other shrubs and plants in the border. This will flower well into the autumn.

If you want to visit Margery Fish’s garden East Lambrook Manor please click on the link to the post on my garden blog where you will find lots of gardens from outside of Cornwall. I no longer update this blog, but it is a good resource of gardens and plants.

The header photo is of Geranium ‘Anne Thomson’ which is a more compact and upright version of ‘Ann Folkard’ and was shown in the dappled shade border three weeks ago. Now much more floriferous and loving scrambling over other shrubs. The bright magenta flowers are borne non-stop from June to October.

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

48 Comments

  1. fredgardener says:

    I too fell in love with hardy geraniums: the flowers are so varied and delicate, and they are very pleasant maintenance-free plants.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Yes, you really do need to study the flowers close up to see the different veining and eyelashes.

  2. A lovely selection. I’ll have to make a note of some of those – especially Orion and Elke. I’ve not visited East Lambrook Manor for a few years but it’s a great garden with a good plant nursery too.

    1. Heyjude says:

      If the garden is close by I would suggest going now, the geraniums will be fabulous.

  3. margaret21 says:

    Well, your garden looks pretty good to me, even if the weather doesn’t.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Lots of sunshine and showers, but not overly warm and quite windy. Some of the plants have gone a bit crazy!

  4. I love a geranium. Though gradually removing wargrave pink for less vigorous ones. My lace time seems to have spread around a good bit too though this year.

    1. Heyjude says:

      I might need to try dividing the lace time, and yes the pink one is invasive. I shall be digging several up once they stop flowering.

  5. peggy says:

    Beautiful. Your flowers are so lovely.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Thank you Peggy, all their own doing.

  6. The Oxonianums in particular are blooms that require time to stop and stare – divinely pretty in an unpretentious way. I love your G Rozanne though and the sight of all these blows the weather blues away – besides warmer weather on the weather next week coming up from the Azores!

    1. Heyjude says:

      Warmer weather would be good. It’s been sunny here in between showers, but not overly warm. All geraniums should be looked at closely, so many lovely veining.

  7. Ann Mackay says:

    I love geraniums and there are some familiar little faces here. 🙂 They are one of the main plants that got me into gardening – so easy to grow and propagate and coping with all sorts of conditions. They are wonderful. Margery Fish had the right idea!

    1. Heyjude says:

      I am beginning to appreciate the smaller ones. Rozanne is a bit of a thug and although I love the fact she flowers forever I think I am going to have to remove her, or find a place where she can romp away without smothering everything else.

      1. Ann Mackay says:

        Ah, that is interesting – I have a Rozanne that’s fairly well-behaved so far but I may just move her somewhere she can spread without causing trouble!

  8. beetleypete says:

    You have not had the best of it in the west, so far this summer. We have had lots of sunshine and heat. In fact today feels very different, as it is dull and cloudy, with a maximum of 19C.
    Best wishes, Pete. x

    1. Heyjude says:

      To be honest it hasn’t been too bad, just nothing consistent – I’d really appreciate a few weeks of guaranteed warmth.

  9. restlessjo says:

    Great British summertime and no British hope at Wimbledon. You should be used! Geraniums don’t always do well here but they’re a welcome splash of colour 🤗💗

    1. Heyjude says:

      There are still some Brits in the championship so I haven’t given up hope. You coming over to child sit during the school holidays? Or are they coming to you this year?

      1. restlessjo says:

        Both. They are here for a week at the end of this month and we come to the UK 5th August 🇬🇧💗

        1. Heyjude says:

          Oh, how wonderful. You must be one very happy lady 🤗

        2. restlessjo says:

          And I’ve just subscribed to the Sports channel where I can watch Wimbledon. Fingers crossed for the upcoming match 🤫💗

        3. Heyjude says:

          I don’t think he has any problem 😊

  10. I love geraniums too for very similar reasons despite our gardens having such different climates. Amelia

    1. Heyjude says:

      The older I get the more I appreciate plants that just get on and do their own thing, though Rozanne is proving a little too boisterous for my small garden.

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