Six on Saturday: Flower burst

Another week of glorious sunshine 🌞 and everything in the garden is about to burst into flower. Peonies are about to pop, roses are about to ravish.

The highlight of the week was joining a Zoom lecture by Fergus Garrett head gardener at Great Dixter on layered planting. For a couple of hours I felt transported to one of my favourite gardens. I’m already looking forward to the next one.

Each week our own head gardener The Propagator invites us to share six things from our garden, share in his comments, then link back to his blog.

1. Phlomis fruticosa

The dazzling yellow flowers of our Jerusalem sage have opened up in the hot April sun. Everything seems earlier than usual this year thanks to the warm weather.

2. Lady Hillingdon rosebud

We have had the first couple of flowers on our Lady Hillingdon climbing rose and this year it is covered in buds so there is the promise of many more to come. Lady Hillingdon was the one who famously wrote that when she heard her husband’s footsteps approaching her bedchamber she would “lie down on my bed, close my eyes, open my legs and think of England”!

3. May blossom and cow parsley

My favourite time of year is when the hawthorn blossom is out and is accompanied by the foaming flowers of cow parsley. ‘Ne’er cast a clout til May is out’ is said to refer to the blossom rather than the month and we have certainly had the weather to strip off layers of clothes.

4. Ceanothus ‘Trewithen Blue’

A couple of weeks ago I promised more pictures of our beautiful Ceanothus when it came into full bloom and here it is. We may not be able to visit Cornwall at the moment but we can enjoy this Cornish blue.

5. Across the border

The border is brimming with life with alliums about to burst and the peony putting on lots of lovely foliage. Meanwhile the Negrita tulips in the foreground are still doing their thing.

6. Aquilegia

We have lots of self sown aquilegias and I am happy to let them grow as I love their ‘Granny’s bonnet’ flowers in a range of pinky purple hues.

16 Comments Add yours

  1. Noelle says:

    The buds of Lady Hillingdon are just perfect…the red tinge magic.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Looking good! Love the rose buds, and that blue…….! Can’t wait to see the peonies. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Lovely roses, well ahead of mine.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. janesmudgeegarden says:

    Your photos are full of light and colour. Just beautiful. I have aquilegia as well, and am happy to let mine spread around.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. fredgardener says:

    Superb blue of the ceanothus. Mine will be at its peak in the next few days… That rosebud is full of promise. Great pics !

    Liked by 1 person

  6. The Ceanothus is beautiful. I love cow parsley. My wife and I have been admiring it our evening strolls around the block.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Katharine says:

    Ceanothus is one of the first climbers I fell in love with. I found the blue just so dazzling. Your one is looking mighty fine.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you – it’s a great plant!


  8. Lisa says:

    Ceanothus has been on my list since I moved into my house in 2011! It’s a native, and the blues are my favorite color.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. tonytomeo says:

    Ceanothus is so pretty this time of year. It is also known as California lilac, because it blooms as well here as lilac does in other regions. It is not often planted in home gardens though, just because it is pretty finicky about pruning, and does not last very long. (Most of us irrigate too generously, even though we are supposed to conserve water.) It is less common in the forest than it used to be because the forests are so overgrown and crowded. Because of fire suppression, this region has not burned since the early 1950s. Ceanothus is more common in a nearby region that burned in 1985. It also enjoys areas of selective vegetation management. Where naturalized exotic vegetation and some of the most combustible vegetation gets cut down, ceanothus regenerates rather early, and, even though thickets of it are combustible, it is typically left while vegetation around it gets removed. (We try to manage vegetation as responsibly as possible, to decrease combustibility without completely destroying what remains of the ecosystem.)


  10. Heyjude says:

    Six lovelies, but my favourite has to be that Ceanothus – what a gorgeous colour! And the tulips are also very pretty. I wish I could persuade cow parsley to set seed in my Cornish hedge, but although it grows in the lanes nearby it just never sets seed where I want it to, unlike the hogweed!


  11. I love the apricot colour of Climbing Lady Hillingdon. The name makes me picture a mountaineer clad in tweed skirt. I didn’t know she was the originator of ‘lie back and think of England’.


  12. Lora Hughes says:

    What a great Six! That purple of the columbine is breathtaking, & love that border as well. The tulips make great punctuation for it. I’m glad you said phlomis was early. Someone gave me some & there are even buds on it. She actually pointed out the spot in my garden where she wanted it planted but it’s not in sun for hours & hours – will it not bloom, do you know? And that rose . . . I love how the little outer things look like they have claws to hold in the beautiful petals.


  13. Fergus lecture sounds good. Have to keep an eye on the website to see if they do more. Lady Hillingdon looks great. My climbing roses are in their 3rd year looking to have tons of buds. Fingers crossed.


  14. cavershamjj says:

    ooh was the dixter lecture open, or did you have to cough up for it? I like Lady Hillingdon, she seems like a pragmatic sort of gal! I also have lots of rose buds this year, sunshine and the rose tonic are clearly a winning combination.


  15. Lovely picture of the Aquilegia. My roses are some way off at the moment but all look healthy.


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