Six on Saturday from Sussex

It’s time for a Tete e Tete. Always the first narcissus to flower in my garden. It’s the best narcissus for pot work and baskets, troughs etc……..

At the front door with a yellow viola.

In a hanging basket. Looks like the basket needs some repair work!

Just getting going in a blue box with summer flowering “edgers”.

In a stone trough, nasturtiums planned in here for later,

This time in another blue box on patio wall with some cotoneaster berries still hanging on.

With a spring collection on patio table.

What a fabulous week of weather! Great for the big spring clear up. Thanks to The Propagator for inspiration as always.

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Six on Saturday

I’m back! Encouraged by a short break to Cotswolds and a visit to Painswick Rococo Garden I’m feeling optimistic about my own garden in the New Year. So, with apologies to The Propagator for my absence here is a touch of Spring from Gloucestershire.

A bank of snowdrops to greet you at Painswick. Their first day of opening on Thursday.

Magic! Love the colour.

A tabletop for galanthophiles!

An invitation for later!

More magical buildings!

Pruning in progress for the many fruit trees.

A belated Happy New Year to all sixers and hope to be back again next week from my own garden.

Six on Saturday from Sussex

Friday was the only bright day of the past week so ventured out with iPad and wellies after days of gales and rain. So this week it’s evergreens and how they keep the garden together after the “froth” of summer has disappeared.

Two cypresses semperviren Totem at the front door with box balls and pyramids in pots. The sempervirens were a birthday present and stood just over a metre when they were planted. Last summer they were attacked by some white mildew substance but I cut away the worst of it and there doesn’t seem to have been any problems over the past summer. The Buxus has been in the same pots for about 7 years. They get some blood, fish and bone in April and plenty of water all year round. They’re clipped on Derby Day of course!

Cupressus sempervirens pyramidalis in the back garden. Reaching for the sky. Sometimes I regret not having it properly clipped but I think it would need a cherry picker to do the job properly now that it has reached this great height and it would be difficult to find a level surface to stand any ladder or platform beneath it as the ground slopes away here, which is probably what creates the good drainage that these Cupressus enjoy. There have been a couple of snowfalls when I’ve gone out with a broom and long cane to shake the snow away before it damages the shape. But worth it!

Behind the cupressus and enjoying the same sharp drainage is Cordyline Australis. Growing back to a good height now after having been cut right down after a particularly bad winter here some years ago which left its centre rotting!

One of two potted bays either side of the patio door. I decided to cut them into “mop heads” when they were quite mature. Unfortunately they don’t match but they are still a good statement in the winter garden and they edge the windows as we look out from the lounge.

A potted Fatsia Japonica coming into flower. A brilliant plant for a shady corner with its lovely glossy foliage all year round.

Another Buxus, this time planted into the border. It has taken several years to get to this size (from a cutting) and start to make a statement. It has grown much more slowly than those in pots. Perhaps it doesn’t enjoy the competition of life in the border.

Well that’s it for this week. Christmas approaches and it’s this weekend that many of the houses around here are emblazoned with Christmas lights. Love them or loathe them they do help to pierce the winter gloom for a few weeks. Thanks to The Propagator as always.

Six on Saturday from Sussex

Murky November days make me appreciate the ivies in the garden. They suddenly come forward from the summer background to bring some light and texture to the winter scene. So here is an ivy sos for this week.

Forming a collar around this pot, which houses a fountain (unfortunately not working this year as pump needs some attention). The ivy is one of several planted when we moved in to trail over the red brick walls that form the patio wall behind this pot.

Winding its way up the handrail on the steps up into the garden. Again, from original planting to hide the brick walls. When it gets too rampant I cut it off, sand down the posts and rail and repaint, then let the ivy start its journey back up the post. Looks like that job will be needed by next summer!

In a pot on the top of the steps, the late afternoon sun catches the variegation on this one. Also in the pot are winter pansies (bit quiet on the flowering front at the moment) and dwarf narcissus Tete e Tete.

Always a good component for winter wreaths, cheering up a dull fence at the kitchen door.

Another borrowed ivy runner from the patio wall. I featured this one earlier in the summer when it was joined by a golden hop growing in a pot next to the obelisk. Will bring the hop back to do the same job next summer and/or add a morning glory? Must remove the pot of finished lobelia behind the obelisk. Has anyone noticed how good the trailing lobelias are when grown in the shade? They seem to last much longer than in a basket in the hot sun.

This one was planted 17 years ago, along with climbing roses, to mask some nasty orange larchlap. It took a while to get going but makes a lovely “fence” now. the larchlap panel has probably disintegrated under there! You can probably see that it is under attack from what The Propagator calls “bloody jasmine”,which is growing through from my neighbour’s side. Have had a good hack at the jasmine about a month ago but will have to go back and start ripping up the runners that are invading the border in front of the ivy! Heyho!

That’s it for this week – off to rake up some leaves before the wind gets up. Don’t forget to check out The Propagator this week.

Six on Saturday from Sussex

Autumn lingers on and the first of the leaves are being bagged up for Leaf Mould. Check out the Propagator for more tips on this! There’s a mix of Silver Birch and my neighbours Acer in here. When it’s full I’ll put some holes in the bag and tie it up for storage behind the shed. I find it takes a year to produce the mould that I use for top dressing my hydrangeas in their tubs in Spring.

The show goes on…….with Cotoneaster horizontalis stealing the scene and here in close up……

Behind is Lonicera echoing the leaf arrangement of the Cotoneaster.

More fire against a grey sky. We inherited this cherry in our front lawn when we moved in 18 years ago. Now it has spread horizontally across the lawn and is approaching the path up to the front door. It softens the view of neighbours’ houses from our kitchen window and gives us privacy throughout the summer when we sometimes sit out on a bench below the window to get the morning sun. It holds a bird feeder for bluetits and a robin and it is lit with white lights for Christmas. In Spring it is always loaded with pale pink blossom. Couldn’t be without it!

Pale and interesting! An unknown Hydrangea “acquired” as a cutting! This was its first year in the garden (not in a pot this one!) and it is growing away well. The flower starts out white and then takes on a pink hue as it fades.

Indispensable Bamboo pleioblastus variegatus. Low growing and very slow spreading, keeps its bright colour all through the winter behind the dark dome of a clipped Box. In March I cut it right down and give it a feed and by June it is up and going again.

With thanks to our host The Propagator that’s it for this week folks.

Six on Saturday from Sussex

Have to confess I took my pics on Friday as didn’t fancy being in the garden for the northerly blast forecast for today. My theme is the low afternoon sunlight and how it highlights some of the trees and bamboos here at 3pm, just over 24 hours before British Summer Time ends.

I seem to have photographed this at a strange angle even though the Betula youngii grows straight and true in the top corner of the garden. You might be able to make out a dead branch up there which belongs to Rambling Rose Seagull; I decided that the Rose was getting too strong a hold on the tree and there’s been a serious pruning back. I almost lost the battle but, with some help from my daughter, girl power prevailed except for this last branch, which hopefully the next gale might dislodge.

The sun catches the lovely bark again on Betula youngii.

The Cornus which featured in an earlier SOS, now with hints of gold this afternoon.

Another (too big for this little garden perhaps) Silver Birch. This is a seedling brought from a tree in a former much loved (and bigger) garden. It’s home to a nesting box for bluetits and their feeder. In a couple of weeks time this one will be turning a lovely buttery yellow and probably be featuring again in my pics.

Sunlight catching the bamboo canes.

Not sure if I’ve fully caught the sparkle on the leaves of this clump of bamboo but they are always best just after a rain shower which we had earlier in the day.

Let’s hope we get more days like this to lighten the gloom of approaching November!

Six on Saturday from Sussex

Another great week weather wise here in Sussex and for a two day trip to Gloucestershire. So, three from home and three from the Cotswolds today. Thanks to our host The Propagator, hope you enjoy the lovely Waterperry.

Work still progressing on the winter tubs and baskets. Loved the colour of this pansy with the silvery variegation on the ivy so have decided to repeat it for the three baskets that go across the front of the house. Will set up my workbench next to our parked car where the sun is this morning and get cracking on those! I am tucking away some muscari and dwarf narcissus underneath – the baskets that is, not the car!

Lonicera baggeson’s gold. I’ve been clipping this into a satisfying “blob” that makes a little statement at the end of a border. It originally tried to climb the trellis but I hit upon this idea for it instead. Further along this border I’m doing the same thing with some Box plants – the plan is to have some permanent shapes to offset the froth of hardy geraniums, mallows and pots of lilies that are stood out here for the summer.

Rosa Dancing Queen on some trellis above Fatsia japonica. The Fatsia is over 18 years old and grows in a pot that has had only one change in that time. It loves this shady corner on the patio.

Came around a corner on a visit to Bourton House, near Moreton in the Marsh on Thursday and found the sun coming through this Canna with the Dahlia nearby making a perfect planting combination.

Also at Bourton House, trees with ivy socks! So many good planting ideas and inspiration in this lovely Cotswold garden, including pots lining the entrance path crammed with begonias, salvias and succulents that were enjoying their last week out of doors before going into the greenhouse for winter.

And finally………Plumbago in the orangerie at the “Mughal” inspired garden at Sezincote, half a mile from Bourton House.

That’s it for this week. It’s half term so will be dividing my gardening moments with grandparent duties.