Saturday, 25 April 2015

April pictorial including the woodland bit!

So much going on at this time of the year I just took the camera round the garden yesterday to see what I could see. Plenty of early treats but a promise of so much more to come.

Acer platanoides 'Crimson King'
 Rather like the photo' but the Norway Maple is not a good choice for most gardens although it is a popular choice for public gardens and streets. I bought it in a fit of pique to counteract the view from the intrusive extension built next door but subsequently moved it to a a place where it could be controlled without causing me problems.

Amelanchier lamarckii
  June Berry or Snowy Mespilus
Asarina procumbens
I can honestly say that the creeping snapdragon, of which I have several plants as they seed themselves everywhere, is never out of flower 52 weeks of the year, they are not spectacular but with the soft hairy leaves and pale yellow flowers are a wonderfully understated plant and much, much hardier than anyone could imagine. They are also very attractive to bees.

Brunnera macrophylla 'Jack Frost'
The Brunneras are much admired and I also grow Brunnera macrophylla 'Looking Glass'  I suppose the problem will always be to me that they are too much like Forget-me-nots of which I have more than my fair share!

Camellia japonica 'Adolphe Audusson'

Cardiocrinum giganteum
 The king of lilies this is a bulb which is going to produce a flower this year, many of mine were decimated by lily beetle and slugs last year and haven't recovered very well. Lily beetle returned about a week ago and I have now sprayed and crushed what I could find so fingers crossed. Not to put too fine a point on it my thumb and forefinger turned red I was so busy.

Omphalodes cappadocica 'Cherry Ingram'
This is a little jewel I bought at Roger's open day last year, I think I read he is not doing it this year which is a shame.

Primula gracilipes
Very easy to grow for a Petiolarid Primula.

Viola jooi
I have two pans of this delicate little viola which have thrived for at least six years in the same container, native of Transylvania.

Squirrel Mayhem.

Don't we just love squirrels to DEATH.

A survivor.
Tulipa 'Monte Orange' almost intact.

The Hardy Orchid

Pleione formosana
Very much the star of many an alpine show, these beautiful "hardy" orchids are in fact easy to grow,  these were given to me by a good gardening friend.

The Red Corner 

The "Meconopsis bed"

"Woodland" bit in the background the bed in the foreground is for the likes of Meconopsis

Some fern fronds have actually survived the winter.

Meconopsis central with a few lilies poking through.

The "Woodland"

A mixture of my favourite epimediums along with trilliums, erythroniums, arums, geraniums, hellebores et al. 

Magnolia x loebneri 'Leonard Messell'
I do hope you have enjoyed a wander around my very informal garden.

Don't forget you can click on the picture for a larger image.


  1. You have a great many things in bloom. I look forward to seeing pictures of your Cardiocrinum giganteum in bloom later on in the season.

    1. Hi Alain, the Meconopsis and Primulas are really the high spot next month. If you would like to see the Cardiocrinums at their best just go to the lily section from the top of the page menu, unfortunately this year's display won't be as good, I think I have only one flowering bulb.

  2. Some of my favourite plants are woodlanders. Unfortunately if you have trees you most likely have squirrels too.
    Never had too much luck with pleiones though. I expect it was me, they never seemed to last beyond winter coming back weakly or not at all after their dormant period.

    1. I won't even talk about the squirrels, one is even rooting up tulips in flower! The Pleiones were given to me two years ago and have been left on a shelf in my cold tunnel, I was given three but unfortunately the stem of one was broken and the bulb didn't survive, the two that flowered are going to be replanted into a clay half-pot and left to their own devices to see what happens.

  3. I am afraid Pleiones are NOT easy for me! What is the secret Rick? My friend Peter down the road grows fantastic ones.

    1. In my case the secret is neglect on a shelf in the cold mini-tunnel Roger.

  4. It's been a real treat seeing around your garden at this time of year Rick. So many super plants and I just love the woodland area. Of course the Mecs will be the stars of the show next month, plenty of anticipation in the air too. Squirrels and Lily Beetles are about the only pests I don't have here, thankfully. Love the Viola jooi - I must see if I can find that here.

  5. If you don't have squirrels or lily beetles Angie, I need to move up there immediately ;-)

  6. You certainly have your share of interesting stuff going on there Rick. Dont get me going on Squirrels of which in Aberdeen I was quite a fan, see them in a different light now. I like your Brunnera and yes you dont have to plant or sow seeds of forget me nots in this part of the country.

    1. I don't know what is going on in the garden, I suspect mainly squirrels with maybe the odd badger thrown in, but I have never sustained so much damage to my plants, this morning it was the flower stem of my only specimen of Meconopsis 'Kingsbarns' which was broken off, it gets me so mad!

  7. I love the Acer platanoides, but my goodness they become big trees! I would not have thought of putting one in a normal garden – I suppose your garden is rather much bigger than the average London garden :-)
    And I loved your photo of the Brunnera, every year at this time I think to myself ‘why don’t I have any Brunnera??’ I must get some….as for squirrel mayhem, yep, they are here too. I wonder if there are just as many where I am moving to. Would be nice if it was a squirrel-free zone. One can only wish….Enjoyed your woodland walk, many of my favourite plants and plants we have in common.

    1. Yes Helene, Acer platanoides was bought in a moment of madness, but now I have moved it to the perimeter it can be kept in check by hard pruning. The Brunneras I do like but as I look down the garden from a distance I can't tell the difference between them and Myosotis which is unfortunate. The woodland bit is getting wilder and wilder which I love, my Cardiocrinums are bulking up again so hopefully they will give a good display next year.

  8. Thanks for the alert to look out for Lily beetle Rick. It probably comes to you a couple of weeks before here on the East. We have been so windy I would imagine it would not dare to take to the air!
    I love Amalenchier as a fairly small garden tree Lovely flowers and then later fantastic Autumn colour

    1. Hi Roger, lily beetle always starts on Fritillaria meleagris here, after the first few have been squashed I spray my lilies with a Thiacloprid insecticide which seems to do the trick, at the same time I spray the roses against aphids and my Solomon's Seal to control sawfly. I don't suppose the Soil Association approves but I am spraying comparatively early in the year and try to keep it to a once only application.