festival of spring #10

A flower that is quite common around Cornwall and  the Isles of Scilly is the Gladiolus communis subsp. Byzantium better known as ‘Whistling Jack’ or the ‘Sword lily’. It is a relic of the Scilly bulb fields and is extensively naturalised where there is little frost. It flowers from May to July. You can buy bulbs for…

Six on Saturday | In the Shade

Long-standing readers of this blog will know by now that I don’t have a proper front garden to my property. We are in a courtyard shared with four other neighbours and the only outside space is a granite ledge and steps to the front door. To make matters worse it is north-facing so receives no…

festival of spring #9

Introduced into gardens before the 1600s, this plant from the Mediterranean soon escaped and became naturalised in the wild. Despite its non-native status, it is a good source of nectar from May to October for bees, butterflies and moths like the Hummingbird Hawk-moth. This is Centranthus ruber var. coccineus. Often known as the red valerian,…

Six on Saturday | What heat wave?

Whilst the rest of the UK – well the south east anyway – reached the highest temperature of the year so far here in the far west of the south-west it has been a challenging week at best. Torrential rain, wind, muggy mid-teen temperatures and some sunshine. At least it meant I could get my…

festival of spring #8

May in England means one thing above all else. Frothy white country lanes. Suddenly they erupt with the white umbelifers of cow parsley / Anthriscus sylvestris. The umbrella-like clusters of white flowers are a familiar sight along the lanes of Cornwall and one of the prettiest is where I live, on the way to Wheal…

Six on Saturday | Mid-May 2022

Mid May already! We are almost half way through this year and it feels to be going altogether far too fast for me. Things are popping up in the garden quicker than I have time to notice, including cleavers and bindweed! Until Wednesday we hadn’t had a lot of rain or wind here in the…

festival of spring #7

Bluebells English, of course… I am going to join in with Dawn’s Festival of Spring which will last for 10 -12 weeks in celebration of this season.

Six on Saturday | May flowers

So, the first week of May and here in the northern hemisphere everything is turning green. That lovely fresh, bright green that only exists for a few weeks. Birds are singing and doing the things that birds do at this time of year; bees are buzzing around the garden; there are lots of things for…

Spring Bulb Wrap-up 2022

In the autumn of 2021 I purchased new bulbs for pots and replanted some of my older bulbs that I had previously had in containers, allowed to die down in the full sun and then stored in my conservatory for a couple of months – these were mainly narcissus and iris reticulata bulbs. Most of…

Six on Saturday | Spring Delights

I adore tulips. I have no idea why these flowers excite me so much – perhaps because there are so many varieties, so many colours, so many shapes, but I love having these in my garden (or on my balcony) during early spring. Sadly even the so-called late flowering types seem to arrive in April,…