Saturday, April 21, 2018

Coming of age

It's Saturday, and you know what that means. Today is when The Propagator hosts his 'Six on Saturday'- a meeting place of gardeners who show the six momentous things that are in their garden today. A bit of boasting, a  bit of confessing, a  lot of fun.
And here are my six:

1. HoneysuckleS!
I have shown off the honeysuckle I planted around my house so many years ago. This is the star of spring, and never lets us forget it. In case you have forgotten what it looks like, here's a pic.
 All these years, I  have also been keeping an eye on a honeysuckle plant that suddenly appeared near the spot where I later built my compost toilet. And now, it has flowered. Lovely, aren't they?
The scent does not have the same knock-your-socks-off quality that the porch honeysuckle has, but is faintly sweet and almost musky. I love it!


2. Sweet Williams.
 When I moved here, I inherited a small clump of dianthus.I fell in love with  its clove+sugar fragrance and have been dividing and taking care of it since. I also sowed a packet of very dark dianthus 'Sooty'. And so I had two.
Last year, for the first time I sowed seeds. And now, I have four types!
My original had a deep pink colour, and sooty is a velvety liver. The 'new' ones are a speckled deep pink and a speckled salmon. I was first not sure I liked the salmon- had a urge to smoke it rather than caress it. But now I think it has grown on me. What do you think?

3. Jasmine buds! Three years ago, a dear friend gave me a star jasmine plant after I admired hers. All these years I have nursed this plant. And now I am rewarded

4. Colour schemes.
Since becoming a fan of Gertrude Jekylls, I have been trying to keep in mind her admonitions to not have garish colour clashes in the garden. It  is still a work in progress, but slowly, I see my garden getting there
I inherited these roses too, but planted the iris. I think they look good together! And in the bed but not photographed yet, are more in the same grey-purple-pink scheme. There are geraniums, cheddar pinks, foxgloves and Himalayan balsam. Sounds a bit of a hodgepodge, but it actually does work well.

5. Donuts.
When I photographed the rose and iris bed, I noticed this.

Another sign of age, but not as heartwarming as beds coming together, or creepers beginning to bloom. This is the dreaded donut of neglected rhizomes. Post flowering, in the monsoon, I need to have a iris dividing orgy. It will be nice to replant them so that they form drifts of colour like Jekyll advises.

6. Cheer.
These little birds come visit us every spring, just around when the aphids arrive. And they are so good as they eat all the bugs on the fruit trees! Watching them probe and snack on the aphids and white flies that plague me is a joy. And it helps that they wear those absurd little masks- like children playing bandits.

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