Six on Saturday 2020 03-10

There are times when gardening has to take a back seat, and I have two such afternoons each week. We had mixed weather again this week, some days heavy rain, others gloriously sunny. On two of those sunny afternoons we were back on the beach, and of course, the play park on the prom, with our two-year-old grandson, a little boy who has the ability to spread his own sunshine wherever he goes. I’m sure I could have been getting some plants and bulbs into the ground, and making the most of the good weather, but when you have a little person who waves, smiles and calls out ‘Hiya’ to everyone he passes, gardening jobs that you are desperate to tackle, become less pressing.

Every person we passed responded with a smile and a friendly acknowledgement and it’s nice to think that one little person’s warmth perhaps brightened up someone else’s day. We grown-ups could learn a lot from little children.

Friday however, was all mine, and that glorious sun was still shining and back in the garden I did get some plants into the ground, a few bulbs into pots, I removed Lavatera ‘Baby Barnsley’ (more of that below), deadheaded, cut back, and did some general tidying up. It doesn’t sound much, but it made a difference to the appearance of the borders.

Rosa ‘Graham Thomas’

The flowers of Graham Thomas are a strong yellow, and right now it seems to have forgotten that this is October, with plenty of strong, healthy cupped roses on each stem, and with more buds getting ready to open. The leaves are marked and a bit tired looking, but overall, this lightly scented shrub rose is putting on a pretty good show.

Rosa ‘Queen of Sweden’

This rose is looking as beautiful now as it was in summer – if not better. The flowering plant behind it, Lavatera Barnsley Baby is distracting – it has grown too tall, too wide and shortly after this photograph was taken, I cut it back then dug it up. A neighbour then claimed it for a space outside her garden fence, at the side of her house. Cutting back should have been left until early next year, but hopefully, it will survive.

Clematis ‘Fleuri’

This clematis featured on the blog, as a new plant, on 30th May this year, and it’s still flowering well. There are another 6 or 7 nice fat buds that should open fairly soon, and I’m hoping that it will continue to flower for another few weeks.


Look what has been delivered! This wooden box with a sliding lid contains Camassia, Allium sphaerocephalon, Narcissus and Tulip bulbs. 😊

I’m planning to use the box to store my dahlia tubers in the garage during winter and it should be fairly easy to find. Husband’s garage could never be described as a tidy place, and bulbs & tubers in cardboard boxes quickly vanish from sight. I should be able to see this one! After spring it will then revert to storing bulbs – unless I find a better use for it.

Lupin ‘Tutti Frutti’

The ‘Tutti Frutti’ plants were grown from seed this year and I’ve been watching to see what colours each plant produces. So far all the flowers have been purple as shown in the photograph taken this week, plus a couple of cream spikes. The plants have only been producing one flower spike at a time, but I expect (hope) that it will be more prolific next year – assuming they make it through the winter – or the snails don’t get them. If they were all purple and cream I’d be perfectly happy with that.

Border View

I was at my kitchen window on Tuesday evening when I noticed a bright splash of red in a border on the right of the garden. For a few minutes I couldn’t figure out what it was, but then I realised that it was the climbing red rose that is having a second flush of flowers. From the window I was looking through the conifer border onto a second border and beyond to a third. I stopped preparing dinner (some things are less important than others), lifted the camera and went outside to take a few shots.

In the foreground, we’re looking between conifers towards Hydrangea ‘Limelight’, with the red roses pushing through foliage beyond it. In the background is a third border showing two Japanese Anemones and an H-frame (which I really dislike) supporting the wisteria tree that has been uprooted twice in storms, so this frame was an essential addition, but I’m looking forward to the day when it can be taken away.

Have a great weekend everyone! We’re in for a rainy weekend here so any gardening jobs I do will probably have to be done in the greenhouse, but I hope it’s sunny where you are! Take care and stay safe.


To join with other garden enthusiasts from around the world, and see how they garden, just take six photographs and post them to Twitter and/or your blog each Saturday. You can get all the details from The Propagator who kindly set it all up.

All photographs copyright of Catherine Wood unless otherwise stated

38 thoughts on “Six on Saturday 2020 03-10

    1. The box had to be paid for. It was one of those ‘offers’ that popped up when I had added so much to my basket – but when I saw it I thought ‘dahlia storage for the garage’. Some things you can’t resist! At least, I can’t. 😁

      Liked by 1 person

  1. There’s something quintessentially autumnal about your border picture, muted colours, flowers moving about at the end of long stems, a background wash of yellow. I’m trying to envisage the Queen of Sweden rose without the Lavatera, which is slightly bluer giving it depth and you don’t immediately notice that they’re not just more rose blooms, at least not in the photo. It’s annoying when something works better in a photo than in real life.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I swithered about whether to use that border photo or not Jim. The light was poor and I had to use a high ISO. It’s an untidy view, but oddly, one I like. Queen of Sweden usually has Ammi of one variety or another around it, and gives it a more airy look, without competing, but my Ammi visnaga failed to grow tall enough this year.


  2. This lupin is superb! I love the colour and the photo of course.
    Plant bulbs for next year are gradually arriving in garden centers in France but there is not much to choose from… I will have to order them online again this year…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Almost everything that’s arrived in the garden this year Fred, has been from online sites, but that has been fraught with delays. One tiny Thalictrum arrived the morning, with another five plants delayed for a further two weeks. Hope you manage to get all the spring bulbs that you need.

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        1. Today’s arrival is Thalictrum delavayi ‘Splendide White’ and the taller, purple variety Thalictrum delavayi ‘Hewitt’s Double’ has still to be delivered.
          Enjoy the plant fair!

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Can I confess that Graham Thomas is not a rose I particularly like? I’m unreasonably prejudiced against yellow. Then I see your photograph against that black background and I immediately think, why did I imagine I didn’t like it? It looks stunning.
    The repeat flowering clematis seems well worth having in the garden. I do like a clematis, bud none of mine repeat flower reliably. Thanks for featuring it again.
    That’s a handsome crate for Dahlia storage. Mine get overwintered in the garage too, and I thought you might like to know that it is a complete mess in ours too (which is nothing to do with me!).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. Graham Thomas was shot on an overcast and moody day, so the background was particularly dark. My husband’s getting seriously stressed that I plan to paint the new fence black. Plant colours against black can really pop – but when I get started – I think there’s probably no going back. Black won’t cover up well if it turns out wrong!

      Nice to know that our garage is not the only one that needs a really good clearing out. 😁


    1. It is in full sun Jude, though it didn’t do too well during the summer months – perhaps because we had so little sun this year. It has been performing better since September than it did during June-August.


        1. Yes – it shows on the David Austin site as “suitable for pots & containers”. That could perhaps solve your problem. 😊


          1. Yes. I also had a look 😊 I need to buy a new pot for the camelia which was blown over yesterday, so I’ll have a look for a nice one for the rose. Then it can go on the patio in the sun. Thanks Catherine 😊

            Liked by 1 person

  4. What beautiful roses still. Mine are mostly going strong too but I haven’t deadheaded for a couple of days so they quickly look untidy. I do like your crate, perfect for storing bulbs.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have some rose plants that need deadheading too – but it won’t today, it’s been raining heavily for much of the day.I’ll get round them all next week – weather permitting.


    1. Thank you, March. Graham Thomas is a wee gem in the garden at this time of the year. I’m hoping to get some of the bulbs planted into the ground this coming week – but our forecast isn’t too encouraging. I’ll just have to get the rainwear on!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Your roses are looking fabulous – and I love the Farmer Gracy box, very handy!. We have found them very good for bulbs also, reliable and good quality.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Paddy, I almost don’t want to hide the box away in the garage. 🤣 This is my second year using FG for spring bulbs – always good size bulbs, good delivery and good customer service.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. If I understand correctly ‘Tutti Frutti’ is one of the only lupins to come true to type from seed. I hope you manage to find some.


    1. Some of the rose flowers are getting smaller and paler now, but the two above really surprised me with their size and strength of colour.


    1. The box was a payable option, I think described as an offer, possibly when the order reached a certain value in the cart. I could see a use for it, liked the idea and added it to the cart at £12. The box + bulbs were heavy, so I expect that cost also went towards any additional delivery cost that FG had to pay.


  6. I swoon every time I see photos of your roses. They always look so beautiful and healthy. Such a beautiful Clematis too! I certainly would not mind a wooden box like that. As you say, ideal for storage! Looks as if you have a lot of planting to do! Gorgeous Lupin, which I think is so aptly named. Have a wonderful gardening week!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The winds and rains have taken the sparkle out of the roses for the moment, perhaps they will have to take a back seat now until next June. The box is a little bit of fun. I’m making good use of it!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. You were right to enjoy the beach moment, rather than tackle garden tasks! These are moments to treasure both for you and the little fella.
    I’ve shopped with Farmer Gracy several times. A bit expensive, but made up for by excellent quality & service.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree with you about Farmer Gracy, Pádraig – a smaller order arrived this morning, just two weeks from the date of order, and direct from the Netherlands. They are more efficient with their order deliveries than some well known UK suppliers. I’m still waiting for perennials ordered in early August from a UK supplier. ☹️

      Liked by 1 person

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