Wednesday, 17th July, 2019.

The last rose to flower, Blushing Lucy, is flowering its heart out up our last remaining apple tree. It was a gift, years and years ago, from the famous Mrs Merton’s garden, where Sue Dickinson worked for some time. I went and looked at some pots that Sue has just done, and realised immediately how hopeless mine were! I have tried to improve them, and resorted to going to Burford Garden Company, where I could not find the plants but managed to find the right colours which was better than nothing! All the Eryngiums are flowering, and what a spectacle they are, the blue of the flower and the stems is so beautiful, and they last a long time. Someone came round the garden at the weekend who said that they did not like blue, I could not believe that I was hearing right.

My younger son Thomas took me to this film on Piet Oudolf that has just come out. I enjoyed it a lot, and in fact would like to see it again. I dont agree with everything he says or does, but a lot of his ideas are really worth listening to. The grasses that I grow in my garden are looking amazing at the moment, particularly the Calamagrostis, El Dorado, Avalanche, and a couple more. What else looks pretty and fresh for months on end, and involves no deadheading or maintenance. I have to admit that I had to experiment with several of them until I discovered what suited my garden. James has now retired, and I am really enjoying having him around, he has taken over my Pilates teacher, Mei! We had a photographic workshop with Clive Nichols, and James adored it, and said he learnt a lot. Clive is a really good teacher, and makes it all fun.

We are cutting back at the moment. For example all the Astrantias, as if left would just seed everywhere, and if cut flat and watered will eventually flower again in the Autumn. What we call the soldiers near the garage, I am cutting raggedy, as I think they look better that way. I will put a photo on sooner or later. All the Alliums have been pulled out as they also would seed and do not look good after a while. Nepeta Nuda looks lovely, and she stands upright which is more than other nepetas do. I am so pleased with the garden this year, and cannot find anything to grumble about.

Sanguisorba stipulata and helenium Sahins early flowerer

One thought on “Wednesday, 17th July, 2019.

  1. The garden is well behaved and rewarding for you now, so much due to your informed choices and observations as to what works. I always say gardening is as much on the mind as in the (green) fingers.

    Interested to hear James has retired. Nicholas did so on 7/12/2018 as all Judges are put out to grass on 70th Birthday.

    I was diffident how I would feel, as I am quite weird in that if I don’t have an 80/20 ratio of solitude and human mingling I get stressed and ill. Only child? Too much living in head? Who knows.

    Happy to report that it has not been a problem, and there are ample spaces in our togetherness to keep me sane(???), and it is nice to do more things together as well, like Darby and Joan.

    Mowing, clipping box and spraying roses are his department, but Worzel Gummage has his nose slightly out of joint, as gardeners can be quite proprietorial about their roles.

    Tact will need to be deployed to maintain harmony there, but no doubt they will come to some alliance.

    Now we will be at Milbourne permanently after 70 years in London, I am lusting after a huge Rolls Royce of a new greenhouse with all the bells and whistles, and spend hours poring over what N calls my greenhouse porn.

    I think it has to be Gabriel Ash don’t you folks?

    Some things you cannot compromise on.

    Like your choice of husband,

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