Sunday, 25 December 2011

Merry Christmas!

Happy Christmas to all you garden bloggers out there and thanks for stopping by at ernie and i this year. There are still some surprising things happening in my garden on Christmas Day. An iris that didn't flower in the summer is now trying to flower - I don't think it will quite manage it but I could be wrong. My Hydrangeas still have a bit of colour - I've seen some locally that look wonderful. Today on a walk along Eastbourne seafront we marvelled at some Agapanthus in full flower. I think the hundreds of people strolling along listening to the band playing carols were fairly oblivious to this floral anomaly. Perhaps most surprising of all however is my nextdoor neighbour's show of daffodils, which have been in flower now for about two weeks. Most bizarre, and a bit of a shame really as they won't be there in Spring.

This fellow has left it a bit late...

Good old Cyclamen never disappoint

I like the faded tints on this hydrangea

This chappy is still busy on Christmas morning, taking some
Hellebore pollen back for a festive feast

My Marguerites are still flowering - despite not being deadheaded for quite a while!

My Arctotis are still going strong, that's at least 7 months of flowering!

Nextdoor's Daffs - how bizarre!

Eastbourne December 25th 2011. Agapanthus in flower.

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Don't they know it's (nearly) Christmas?

Someone needs to tell some of the plants in my garden that it's time to rest! But it's been so mild, plants which should have long finished flowering are still parading their wares. For instance, this Ceanothus:

It flowered, as usual, in May, but it must think it's May again as it's breaking out all over with its powdery blue flowers. And cowslips are having a resurgance, which is most disconcerting:

And of course, good old primulas are flowering everywhere, they don't seem to have a season.

They aren't my favourite plant, or at least not this variety, but you can't knock them if they give a splash of colour at the end of November, can you?

It's all very strange. What's still flowering in your garden?

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Sheffield Park in Late Autumn

My favourite time to visit Sheffield Park, in East Sussex, is at Rhododendron time. However, Autumn is a close second. The colours reflect beautifully in the lakes, giving you two trees for the price of one! I have heard that it has not been the best year for Autumn colour around these parts. That was certainly borne out by my visit yesterday, although it is the end of Autumn. Acers were standing knee deep in their own russet confetti, and the gentians must have been a picture a few weeks ago. Luckily it was a still day so the reflections in the lake were undisturbed, and I was able to take a few decent pictures:

Getting ready for a Winter sleep: Gunnera, or as my mother-in-law
calls them (accidentally) Gonhorrea!

Friday, 4 November 2011

My Garden in November

I love winter gardens, but a winter garden mine is not. But it's surprising how many flowers are still going strong, mainly thanks to a mild Autumn and a fair amount of rain.

Good old Crysanths never disappoint. Time to divide this one.

A Gaura coming into its own.

Sedum and Stipa tenuissima

My globe thistles are enjoying a second flowering

A lovely Cosmos grown from seed by my mum.

Lantana - always reminds me of Spain. Oh to feel the warmth of the Spanish sun...

This is my last sweet pea flower. They began flowering in June.

An Aeonium looks fondly down at an Iris.

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Hyde Hall-oween!

At RHS Hyde Hall in Essex, pumpkins and witches abound this week, but for me the only scary thing was the price of the cakes! The gardens still have plenty of colour, as you can see!

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Time to Tidy

Saturday afternoon was spent tidying up around the garden. Lavender was cut back, the greenhouse was cleared of weary tomato plants, then cleaned, and dahlias were deadheaded. I also planted a dozen foxgloves in a tricky area of dry shade - fingers crossed! Sunday was meant to be part two of the tidy up, but the weather was so lovely, and the sea, which I can see from my sofa here, was looking so beautiful that a walk seemed in order. Sitting on the beach with a flask of coffee on a Sunday morning with a warm October sun on your face - does life get better than this?

Monday, 10 October 2011


Having been given a cucumber plant back in June and being a total novice in growing them, I'm afraid I just left it in its pot in the greenhouse and forgot about it. Yes, I watered it, but I failed to give it any support. I don't think I even knew what I was watering as it was stuffed behind a tomato plant. However, the poor neglected thing did bear fruit - just one. But I spotted it too late, as you can see:

Hey presto! The world's first square cucumber, perfect for sandwiches!!!

Monday, 3 October 2011

October Heat at Wisley

Well who'd have thought it?! My last visit to Wisley (read here) in June was all about dodging storms, and now here we are in October dodging sunstroke! This weekend's glorious weather certainly brought everyone out and about, I've never seen Wisley so busy - lots of families too, which is great, as long as the kids stay off the borders! How the gardeners at Wisley keep the interest going throughout the year is a constant source of amazement to me - every month of the year seems to be the best time to visit!

The summer borders are at the height of their powers:

The Glasshouse had some unusual offerings:

Coleus - now called Solenostemon

Calliandra selloi

Brugmansia x candida

And here are some other shots of the garden:

This cheeky heron wasn't perturbed by onlookers!

The delicate autumn crocus