A day late, but here I am with my contribution to Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day for August.
So many bloggers grew wonderful dahlias last year, which looked fantastic in a vase, so I was determined to seek out some new ones myself. I studied what everyone else was growing and made lists. Then suddenly time had gone by and it was too late to order anything, so I ended up with a few shrivelled tubers that were left at the cheapy shop.
Never mind, I am pleased with the results. I love the way that the petals of ‘Akita’ are edged in gold.
‘Contessa’ is such a lovely shade of red and I love the pompoms in vases.
‘Genova’ and ‘Musette’ are two more pompoms which I probably wouldn’t have chosen if I had more choice.
I am very pleased with ‘Rebecca’s World’ which is a showy cactus, with wine and white flowers; each one is different. I have picked a bunch for tomorrow’s In a Vase on Monday.
I have plenty more Dahlias which will soon be flowering. Amongst them there are my own seed grown ones. The species Dahlia merckii always comes true from seed. I love its simple beauty.
I have plenty of young plants which started off with The Bishop of LLandaff as parents. I have some like this bright red one.
Mostly though, I am trying to grow them darker and darker and so in another part of the garden, I have some like this. I love the way that this one has a distinct stripe.
This year’s babies are yet to flower so I am quite excited to see how they will turn out.
Another plant which I used to dislike because of its ubiquity in suburban gardens is Hydrangea. Now I love it.
The tall growing Hydrangea aspera has lovely felty leaves. I love its two tone flowers.
The flowers of Hydrangea macrophylla ‘Madame Emile Mouillere’ are pure white and contrast beautifully with the pink buds. I think it is one of the best white ones.
I have the lovely Hydrangea arborescens ‘Annabelle’ with its large round heads. I also enjoy Hydrangea paniculata ‘Limelight’, although mine is puny compared with the one my son grows on his jetty garden.
I am redesigning a shady part of my garden at the moment and I think I shall certainly be adding a few hydrangeas. There are so many lovely hybrids around. I like the white ones with Crocosmia x crocosmiflora ‘George Davison’ and ferns.
The first Aster to flower is Aster x frikartii ‘Monch’. It is one of the longest lasting Michaelmas Daisies. Beth Chatto said: ‘..absolutely the best Michaelmas Daisy for beauty and long display’. The one in the picture has the butterfly flowers of a white Gaura threaded through it.
Still in blue, one of my delphiniums is blooming again after being deadheaded earlier.
For highlights of the garden in pink, I would choose first of all the lovely Crinum powelli with its huge trumpet flowers.
Other flowers pretty in pink are the Platycodon grandiflorus ‘Fuji Pink’growing with a Penstemon.
Diascia personata blooms for weeks on end and is a mass of pink flowers. It is very easy from cuttings.
For pink annuals I don’t think you can beat the silky flowers of Malope trifida ‘Vulcan’. This is great as a cut flower too.
There are some beautiful new hybrid Echinaceas around but I find most of them don’t survive for more than a year. The ordinary pink Echinacea purpurea not only keeps coming back, but it seeds around too.
I have several Roscoeas, but I am particularly impressed with a new one called ‘Monique’ which is tall and long flowering.
Hollyhocks are coming to an end now, but this one, ‘Halo Apricot’ with a nice dark eye is still going strong.
A cousin of the hollyhock is the wonderful Alcalthaea suffrutescens ‘Park Allee’. I have described this amazing plant before on this blog, but each year it gets better and better. The flowers are a satiny apricot pink colour. It is easy from cuttings, so I now have it all over the garden.
I never used to like Kniphofia very much. I was put off by the horrible red hot poker, Kniphofia ‘Atlanta’ which was all you ever saw at one time. There are some lovely hybrids now. I love the peachy salmon,”Timothy’.
I will talk about what is going on in my August pots in another post, as this is turning out to be rather too long.
To see other Garden Bloggers’s Bloom Days around the world, please go over to Maydreamgardens where Carol hosts this popular meme.