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Back to the day job!

Garden date 26 Jan 2024

After two and a half years of being barely a part-time gardener, I’m trying to ease myself back into full time work.    This has resulted in a couple of hours soaking in a hot bath!

I usually sow my pelargoniums at Twixtmas – on the cusp of this year they were part of my New Year’s Eve celebration.    I did everything as usual – same propagator, same window sill, same brand of compost, same brand and variety of seed – germination NIL.    Last year they were up in no time.      So I’ve had to start again.    Decided to try Moles seeds – they tend to be used by the professionals and come in larger quantities – embarrassed myself by ringing up to challenge the price – VAT is chargeable on flower seed but not veg!     First packet of 50 F1 Pelargonium Lavender sown yesterday.   Will let you know the results.   This will, however, only establish if it was the seeds’ fault rather than mine -  same brand of compost, same window sill etc.

Following David Austin’s unsolicited e-mail advising that rose pruning should be carried out in January and February, although March is all right if push comes to shove, I have spent the last three unusually dry and frost free days pruning.    There is much dead wood and, in the main rose bed, one completely dead bush -    “Peace” – ironic given the current state of the world.     She was one of my dad’s favourites named in 1945 in celebration of the end of WW2.

I suspect that much of my rose problem is the prolonged flooding over winter.     Unsurprisingly, the lavender around the edge of the bed hasn’t fared much better.    I’ve cut some out and have decided to fill the spaces with cream coloured Salvias.     ‘Cerro Potosi’ seems to have kept blackspot off Gertrude Jekyl and Olivia Rose Austin in the side border.

The snowdrops are beginning to please.   I’ve only got three named varieties.   Most are Galanthus nivalis and G. Flore Pleno.    But I was tempted by Christine Skelmersdale’s slides (Jan meeting) and am awaiting delivery of three ‘Blewbury Tart’.       If you’re passing and the gate is open take a look – come in for a chat!

Still mulling whether to hoik out the Box hedge in favour of Euonymus japonicus ‘Jean Hugues’.  

Until next time ……    


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