Plants by Post – do I rate them?

When I asked  Tim Milward of Plant Me Now how many lines of seeds they had in their catalogue he looked at me politely and I realised I was a bit of an idiot.  Plant me now, geddit?  Plants arrive as plugs or in 7cm pots and the punter plants them and tends them. It’s…

The RHS Dahlia Show – what did we think?

My friend Frenchie of Moat Farm Flowers is big into cut flowers.  She lives up here in Suffolk and is growing and selling beautiful blooms for weddings and the like.  A Dahlia Show at Wisley? We gasped with excitement and made the date to go together. She for the learning and I for the gawping….

That orange hunch was right

– just look at this: I can’t tell you were saw this or I will get my arms chewed off.  It’s just enough to say that Pascal Cribier was involved in the planting and the garden is remorselessly orange.

Shimmering border at Pensthorpe

Or Oudolf does it again.  Digitalis ferruginea and echinacea.  There was a time, way back in the blurred mist of yesteryear, when the flower borders were losing it for colour and interest  by now.   These two will go on and on.  A brilliant co-planting. 

Am I mad to go orange?

I just think enough customers have said “no yellow and definitely no orange” to spin my my mind.  I have spent this week in Norfolk in a rose field and with plenty of time, in the heat, to rethink my Pantone schemes. Here is Alfresco:  I am in love with this rose and plan to…

Smelling roses

The best way to smell a rose?  Cut the bloom and put it into the warm bowl of your hands.  Breath warm air into the flower and then inhale deeply. The best time to do this smelling?  A damp morning after a night of gentle rain, when the sun has been up long enough to…

OK just this once a little bit of before and after

Here is a hoary handed son of the soil tilling – with rotavator –  this large border 17 metres long by 4 metres wide.  The photo was taken last September 2014. The planting up was done in the last week of October.  The perennials were all either bare-rooted or in 9cm pots.  The 12 roses…

Visiting a plant trial ground.

I have been round a trial ground before and it is quite something to see good looking new plants that have endured  the selective breeding process, survived the cull  and made it out the other end.

Plantaholic POST: Stipa gigantea

Transparency is a major quality in a perennial.  There are plants that are of a certain stature, take the movement of the breeze and are see-through.  They do not need staking and create allure and atmosphere.  The tall grass Stipa gigantea is in that league.