Six on Saturday | Orchard flowers

Six on Saturday is hosted by the lovely Jon, AKA ‘The Propagator’ where you find links to many more wonderful garden enthusiasts from all over the world who share six things from a garden on a Saturday. I usually join in from my garden in Cornwall which is recorded on my Cornwall blog, naturally. But this week I shall be travelling home after a week away from the county, the first time in almost a year!

So what better way to re-open my garden blog (which has been dormant for 18 months) than a visit to the lovely orchard in the grounds of Glastonbury Abbey where tree blossom and wild flowers were a heady delight. The scent of cow parsley and hawthorn drifted through the air which was alive with the music from a choir of songbirds.

Hawthorn blossom

“Six things, in the garden, on a Saturday. Could be anything, you decide. Join in!”

See here for the participant’s guide.

Six on Saturday

Most Popular Posts of 2019

 

Last year I did a post about the statistics on my blogs in lieu of the report that WordPress used to send us all at the end of the year so I have had a look at this year’s results. This flower blog has not really been very well visited this year, but that may be due to the fact that I only post weekly now as most of my blogging takes place on my Cornwall blog and I haven’t left the county to visit any other gardens. Flowers on Friday was a new theme this year and regularly attracted 50+ views. The Spiky Squares challenge during March was around about the same.

Most views during the last year (2019)

  1. Flowers in Australia #4
  2. Mrs Greville’s Rose Garden
  3. More from Nymans
  4. Flowers on Friday – Anemone coronaria
  5. Last year’s statistics – Things you have liked
  6. Flower of the Month – January
  7. Cornish Wild Flowers in June
  8. About Page
  9. Flowers on Friday – Foxgloves
  10. Spiky Squares #4 and Flowers on Friday – Helenium

Most of my garden visits tend to be within the county of Cornwall at the moment so they appear on the other blog. I might start doing more macros of flowers and nature which I will post on here, but for now this site will be hibernating until springtime. I thank all of you lovely fellow bloggers who take the time to look at my photos for your visits and especially those of you who comment, it is always nice to know what you are thinking and to have a chat. I wish you all a happy, healthy and nature-filled year ahead.

Flower of the Month: October

There’s not a lot in flower this month so I thought I’d take a look at October birth flowers which are Calendula and Cosmos. I have already featured the lovely Cosmos so I have dipped into my garden files to find some of my Calendula photos.

Marigolds and Borage

Calendula officinalis, the common or pot marigold, is a popular annual plant with yellow to orange daisy- or chrysanthemum-like flowers. The common marigold is still widely used around the world to heal cuts and bruises. Its flowers and leaves are edible, and can be used in soups, salads, and other dishes. It also makes a spectacularly eye-catching garnish.

Marigolds

Because of its resemblance to the sun, it is associated with warmth, love, and creativity.

Flowers on Friday

Ginger Lilies are striking perennials and highly prized for their exotic-looking foliage and brightly coloured flowers.  They will thrive in full sun or light shade where there is a reliable source of moisture in summer and will survive outside in warmer parts of the country if the crown is protected by a dry mulch. In colder areas bring indoors and keep dry throughout winter, or lift the rhizomes and store in a cool, dry place until spring when they can be replanted. They are commonly seen in the gardens of Cornwall where they can grow into very large clumps.

Hedychium gardnerianum Large cylindrical racemes of sweetly scented yellow flowers, each with protruding red stamens, put on a very showy display from midsummer. A vigorous species, the bold foliage will often have a slight blue tint.

Hedychium densiflorum Forming a slowly spreading clump of lustrous foliage, this compact ginger lily is one of the hardier forms. The slender spikes of fragrant, orange-red flowers appear early in the season and tend to open in one impressive flush.

Hedychium flavescens Tall stems are clothed in pointed, lance-shaped leaves, which can grow to 60cm long and have a softly hairy reverse. In late summer or early autumn these stems are crowned with clusters of spicily-scented, creamy-yellow flowers.

 

Flowers on Friday

I have featured this flower before, but couldn’t help photographing some recently in the Lost Gardens of Heligan. I love these flowers and how the petals droop as they age. With their swirling skirts I always think of them as ‘little dancers’.

Helenium ‘Riverton Beauty’: Tall, upright and robust with clear, butter yellow flowers and a central brown cone.

Helenium ‘Riverton Gem’: A tall and robust selection forming a large bush of upright stems with mid green leaves topped with a magnificent display of orange flowers with yellow tips in mid to late summer.

With Storm Lorenzo hitting our shores (my little Aussie grandson thinks it is hilarious that he has a storm named after him), these flowers will probably be finished by the end of the weekend. But hopefully the pictures will brighten up your Friday.

 

Flower of the Month: September

This is the month of the Michaelmas Daisy, or Aster or Symphyotrichum or whatever name has been decided upon this year.  I mean who is going to remember Symphywhotsit! The feast day of St Michael the Archangel on the 29th September coincides with the peak flowering season of autumn flowering Asters. Which is how they come by their common name, Michaelmas Daisy.

There’s a colour to suit every garden – they come in shades of white, blue, purple and pink and they can flower for weeks beginning late summer and into autumn.

Asters

They look great in cottage gardens but also work in more contemporary schemes – they associate well with ornamental grasses. They’re extremely popular with bees and butterflies, too.

Some are compact and clump-forming and suited to the front of a border or a container, others are taller statuesque specimens reaching 2 metres and look best at the back of a border where they can waft over the other plants.

One of the best places to see these plants is in Worcestershire, close to the beautiful Malvern Hills. The Picton Garden is a plantsman’s garden that holds the National Plant Collection of more than 400 varieties of Michaelmas Daisies creating a jewel-like tapestry from mid-September. I published a post about this beautiful garden in 2014 so please click on the link and head over there for a visual treat.

 

 

Flowers on Friday

Japanese Anemones make their presence known in September. These pretty flowers are very attractive to pollinators too. The term Japanese anemone is misleading.  Anemone hupehensis is actually a native of  Hupeh province in eastern China, but it was grown in Japanese gardens for centuries, hence the confusion.

Colours vary from the purest of white and the palest pinks through to deep pink. They can be grown in good light or dappled shade and  like many Asian plants, are used to summer rainfall and good winter drainage so these anemones need fertile soil that does not become waterlogged in winter.

Although they may look delicate these flowers can survive with minimal maintenance once established. With a blooming time of 6-8 weeks they are an obvious plant for late summer to autumn gardens and look good in cottage gardens, coastal gardens or a more naturalised, prairie style planting among grasses and other autumnal planting.

Anemone x hybrida ‘Pamina’

Flowers on Friday

A different Friday flower this week on account of a very special anniversary.

The iris flower takes its name from the Greek word for a rainbow, and is also the name for the Greek goddess of the rainbow. For me  Iris is the name of my mother who would have been 100 years old today, had she lived. Instead it is almost 24 years since she died on 07 October 1995.

So  for today, as a tribute to my mother, I am going to post a photo of her as a young woman and surrounded by these lovely flowers.

Iris Edith Beddall (centre) circa 1942 aged 23yrs

Her parents left Thorne in Yorkshire with their two children to live and work in India during World War One. Iris was born on September 06 1919 in Angus Jute Mills, Gourhati, in the Howrah District of West Bengal, India which at that time was ruled by the French. Her father was a blacksmith/silversmith/gunsmith and at the time of her birth he was a foreman at the mills.  The family returned to England when she was still a small child, but she had memories of living in India and her ayah who looked after the three siblings. And she learned from her mother how to make a mean curry.

And it is entirely possible that because of where she was born I grew up being totally fascinated with the idea of travelling to India.

Flower of the Month: August

Looking around the lanes and gardens in August you can’t fail to notice the number of Hydrangeas that are in flower. Here in Cornwall where the temperatures are mild all year round and where there is plenty of moisture they grow into enormous shrubs in colours ranging from the purest white to the darkest purple.

The one place to visit to see these flowers en masse is Trebah Garden on the Helford River. This is when they take centre stage. The plants here are hand pruned in early spring which helps promote the abundance of flowers that remain until long into the autumn. The majority of these were planted in 1949.

Included in the species are H. aspera which has soft velvety leaves. Bees collecting pollen from this plant accumulate a blue sac on each leg rather than the usual yellow.

H. quercifolia has large oak-like leaves which develop burnished tinges in autumn.

H. paniculata “Vanille Fraise” (Strawberry Vanilla) has large panicles of white flowers that turn pink as the summer progresses. This one I have in my own garden.

Hydrangea Valley is filled with plants of all shapes and colours. The pretty ‘Monet’ style bridge provides the perfect place to see them with reflections in the Mallard Pond.

If you want to see more of this lovely garden then please click on this link to my other blog: Cornwall in Colours