Bright Colours in a Grey Day
Last Sunday it was a very springy day with grey clouds coming and going, some little rain and an overall dull light. That upset me because I wanted so badly to see the gravel garden done but I only managed to cover a little more than a half with the gravel, then it started raining again and I had to give up. I have plenty of jobs started and left halfway inside the house, so I took the chance to carry out with some of those boring jobs. I had the second coat of paint in the guest room done now and I’m rather happy with it, even though the first coat is much more enjoyable because you have the idea of doing more with less…
A large display of primary colours was there in the garden, every single flower clearly outlined by the green of the surrounding foliage, it almost made me feel like painting something different than a wall!
As Single Cherry continues to produce new spicy scented blooms and rosa chinensis Odorata is literally covered in flowers, new roses are blooming everyday now and every one is a surprise!
Zéphirine Drouhin is a large Bourbon rose, said to be very incline to mildew, rust, black spot and whatever disgrace could happen to a rose, indeed mine is always very healthy, with a main flowering time in spring and some reliable scattered flowers during all the remaining season, until fall. New foliage is a deep purple, a colour that perfectly matches the flowers of clematis Niobe, that I’m in fact planning to plant together again (as I used to have in my previous garden). This perfect match doesn’t come out from my little head, I saw it ages ago in a book, maybe the book about roses written by Roger Phillips and Martin Rix (of which I don’t know the original title).
This rather recent hybrid spinosissima has a very odd and mutable colour: Maigold changes from deep salmon to peach to pale yellow while fading. I was skeptic about this rose colour but at the end I decided to grow it anyway just because it was an hybrid spinosissima (which is apparently – one of – my new obsession-s). I kind of alienated her from the Rose Garden because I didn’t know how this colour would have blend with the others (I’ve done the same with some Austin roses too), so she’s now growing in the middle of nowhere with a big clump of iris pseudacorus behind: I have to admit I like this plant although I don’t regret my choices, and I need to keep an eye on her.
Another new entry is Rival de Paestum, another Tea/China. I used to dislike china roses because of their weak neck and the tired petals and their overall shabby look: now I love them for the same reasons. I change my mind but I always have my good reasons to defend my point of view… I should have been a lawyer!
I don’t know where all these tiny flowered forget-me-nots jumped out from, because I surely never sowed them, I’m not a forget-me-not kind of guy and this image is too sweet and romantic (in the very sticky and sugary meaning of the word) for my taste but how could I eradicate one of them with all those other little blue eyes looking at me? I hope they’re going to find their natural death soon anyway.
Marguerite Hilling is a reblooming hybrid moyesii, with very wide light scented pearl pink flowers. The plant is growing strongly and I like the ferny foliage, very similar to those of rosa Moyesii but bigger. Omar Khayyám is a beautiful damask rose, his strongly scented flowers are opening now. Of this rose I like the sage green foliage, the strength in his rather short prickly stems and the very up pointing buds along with his strong damask perfume. A very elegant rose.
All the salvia microphylla hybrids are already in flower and they are going to keep up the show until next fall. They’re such reliable plants I wish I could plant some more this year. They can flower and increase the plant volume at the same time, the only thing they give up a little is colour: in summer salvia Navajo is much paler, almost pinky white and the other crimson one becomes deep pink. I’ve planted a pale cream one called Vanilla which is in flower too. Tulipa turkestanica found its way to catch attention even after its flowering time: its alien shaped seed pods are very showy, I don’t recall any other tulip that can hold on for so long: keep playing your maracas a little longer, and then spread your seeds around for next year, little tulip!
Under the crab apple trees my sedum spot is so lush and green it makes you feel like chewing a little bit of the leaves! I may give these sedums a Chelsea chop and make some more cuttings, maybe in a more sunny position so Matrona would become more maroon and Xenon more purple!