Six on Saturday 2020 08-05

There’s been a lull in gardening activities this week, we’ve reached a sort of in-between stage. The seedlings are in the greenhouse, not yet ready to venture outside, and the final few half-size trays hold seedlings that are still too small to pot on. It’s too early to plant out the tender plants, the garden is mostly weed-free (that won’t last long), and it’s mostly just watering and feeding to attend to for the moment.

Right now it’s late Friday afternoon and I’m sitting in our summerhouse relaxing, looking out at the garden and pondering over changes and additions for next spring. It’s sunny, there’s a light breeze, still a little bit cool, but pleasant, and there’s not a sound, except for some happy birds singing nearby. It’s peaceful.

For a little while this week there’s been time to sit and enjoy the colours and perfumes of the springtime garden. Those are special moments.

But now it’s time for Six on Saturday! I have just two subjects this week, though plenty of photographs.

Malus Everest, Apple Blossom

It amazes me that blossom so delicate and beautiful can grow from such a knarled old branch and trunk! But here it is, laden with white flowers and tiny red and pink buds that look like little polka dots scattered throughout the tree.

A comely sight indeed it is to see, a world of blossoms on an apple tree.
~John Bunyan

Tulips in situ

If I’ve learned anything this year about growing peony-flowered tulips in a pot it’s this – don’t pack them too tightly into the pot. Many of the bulbs produce multi-headed blooms and they need room to grow – if they’re deprived of that, it’s hard to fully appreciate their individual beauty.

This is only my opinion, and others might disagree, but next year I will be looking for an airier, more natural look – and I’m hoping that I manage to remember my own advice when it’s November and time to plant the bulbs!

Five pots of double late-flowering tulips
Same pots, different view
Tulips on display outside the summerhouse
Tulip Copper Image

This is a particularly lovely double tulip, which has very large copper-coloured blooms adorned with a profusion of petals.

Some of the petals have touches of magenta, making them look a deep dusky pink in strong sunlight, but the overall flower colour is a very unusual (but beautiful) coppery tone. I’d be happy to have more of them planted in the borders and expect I’ll be adding a few more bulbs to next year’s tulip order.

Peony-flowered ‘Copper Image’
Bathing in sunshine
Tulip ‘Charming Lady’

I’m absolutely smitten with this tulip. The soft and delicate sunset colours vary through yellow to gentle orange, soft apricot and pale pink, with a few magenta touches.

It’s multi-headed and the flowers vary in size from large to petite, and the stems vary in height, giving it a more airy appearance than the other double late-flowering varieties that I’ve grown this year. Sigh…it’s simply gorgeous!

Gentle sunset colours
A truly ‘Charming Lady’
Soft and gentle
A Zingy yellow in sunshine
Tulip ‘Dream Touch’

Another well-named variety, the petals of Dream Touch are soft to the touch and almost velvety. I just love the richness of its red-purple colour and each petal that’s distinctively trimmed in white.

It’s less cupped than the others mentioned here and has a slightly more open bloom – almost water-lily in shape – which reveals the individual layers of white-edged petals. The flowers are approx 11-12cm diameter, making it an impressive sight in any garden. It has earned its keep and will be a welcome return to the borders next year.

Tulip ‘Nachtwacht’

It’s dark, it’s dramatic, it’s different, and I’d love to say that I adore it, but I’m not so sure that I do.

Tulip ‘Nachtwacht’ – or ‘Night Watch’ is named with a nod to the Rembrandt painting ‘The Night Watch’, famous for its dramatic use of shadow and light. Tulipa Night Watch displays petals of dark and light but in a way that’s just not subtle enough for me. When I look at it I feel it’s like rumpled tissue paper – I think it is just a little bit too untidy for my taste.  In its own way, it is beautiful, but I wouldn’t choose it again.

However, I’ll lift and store the bulbs over summer and autumn, and if it doesn’t feel I’ve insulted it, I’m sure it will make an equally dramatic appearance in next year’s garden.

That’s my contribution for this Saturday, be sure to check out all the other Six on Saturday posts from around the world, where you’ll find plenty of inspiration and garden beauty. Enjoy your gardening weekend, and stay safe and healthy. 🌈

Here are the details:


Six on Saturday is like a weekly journal. Take six photographs and post them to Twitter and/or your blog. You can get all the details from The Propagator who kindly set it all up. If you want to join in and see what everyone else is doing in the garden, just follow the link!

All photographs copyright of Catherine Wood unless otherwise stated.



33 thoughts on “Six on Saturday 2020 08-05

    1. A few of mine are starting to go over as well. I’ve been hoping they woull last until the peonies and roses start to flower, but I don’t think that will happen.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Sorry you’ve lost an apple tree – I always think their blossom is equal to, if not better than, the cherries.


  1. What a beautiful selection of tulips, as most have stated, ours are finished here. The blossom is stunning. I mentioned a few weeks ago that the eating apple trees had very few flowers although they were covered last year. In my experience, they do occasionally have a year “off”. I’m looking forward to a better show next spring.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. A year off? I haven’t heard of that. I wonder if that was what was wrong with mine last year – the blossom was fairly poor compared to what it normally is. Happy to say that it’s much improved this year.


  2. I think your double tulips look amazing crammed in like that. Maybe it’s one of those things that looks great in a photo but less good in real life where you can see the plants struggling. Beautiful features as ever and your tulip selections are just gorgeous, Dream Touch especially.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dream Touch is beautiful. I think all it will take to keep me happy is probably two bulbs less in a pot. 😁


  3. Copper Image and Dream Touch do it for me! I rather like them packed in, and they have such lovely tidy foliage! All mine are done now except for ‘China Pink’ a lily-flowered variety which was later to open than the rest. I’m not a pink person, but these are so lovely and look like pretty flamingos! Your photos are stunning as usual.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s two for having them crammed in. 😁 The foliage is very strong, as are the stems, especially Copper Image. The only thing I’ve noticed though is that the heads are very easily snapped off if you are lifting the pots around the garden. China Pink is a beauty (I’ve just googled it) – I really need to add more variety next year, and I’m making notes of recommendations!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Some of my White Triumphator heads were snapped off in last week’s winds, but the rest were fine. Last year all my Brown Sugar lost their heads! Luckily this year the wind has been mainly light during the tulip season.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I’d be so annoyed if the wind took off the tulip heads. Winds have been light here too – until last night and today. The tulips survived but I had to pick a number of plants up from around the garden this morning. It’s calmed down now but we’re expecting -1C overnight. 🥶


    1. I was impressed with the size of the bulbs from Farmer Gracy. There was a problem with a small number of bulbs in one pack, but they replaced the entire pack of 30 without any hesitation and assured that the remaining bulbs would be fine – and they were. A family member benefitted from the extra bulbs. I was very pleased with their customer service.


  4. Beautiful tulips. Especially loved Copper Image. Hope I remember the advice about planting come November. When you say an airier look, how are you going about it? (I thought your display was wonderful as is.)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I feel the tulips would look better with a bit more space between them, and I’ll make note of how many are in the pot when I empty them out, then plant a couple less next year. Dream Touch is fine as it is, though the others are multi-headed and there’s little space available for the secondary heads to open. I’ll try less in the containers next year, who knows – I might decide I preferred them the way they were in 2020!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Such beautiful apple blossom! I have a love/hate relationship with tulips (I love them, they hate me) so enjoy seeing other people’s fabulous displays. Your pots are most colourful and beautiful Catherine – all new varieties to me with the exception of ‘Charming Lady’. I grew her last year and she certainly lived up to her name.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love apple blossom a teeny bit more than my two cherry trees, Anna. Those tulips are new to me, including Charming Lady, and I’m so pleased with them, but I’ll have to add some different varieties for next year.


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