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Six on Saturday 13/01/2018

img 1662 2 Six on Saturday 13/01/2018

It doesn’t seem possible does it? Already 2 weeks into January, almost halfway though the month! But what a mild week it has been, the grass seems to be growing, certainly put on a bit of growth in the weeks between my visit to one site, hoping we get a little bit of colder weather to slow it down! One thing I hate is those winter days where it’s just dull all day, makes me feel very inclosed and we had a week of those, only day it was bright and cheerful was on Wednesday when I had the pleasure of taking a pruning workshop for a small group at Waterperrys in Oxford, the gardens there are always wonderful and it was lovely taking time to spend basically talking about a job I love doing, pruning roses. Taking about pruning let’s delve into my sin on Saturday for this week, again coming from a clients garden in the new forest.

img 1657 Six on Saturday 13/01/2018

img 1662 1 Six on Saturday 13/01/2018

First one of the 6 this week has to be pruning these beautiful espalier apple trees, not had much pruning done for a few years, had to do a little corrective works on them to get them into a little more of a shape but very happy for the finished works, will be summer pruning them next time.

img 1679 Six on Saturday 13/01/2018

Ahh yes a simple pot marigold or calendula, been flowering non stop since the summer! A massive ray of sunlight on a dull January day and also the first time I have seen on flowering this late in the season

img 1677 Six on Saturday 13/01/2018

Ahh still some rose hips about, almost like Christmas baubles left on the Plants, forgotten by all, for some reason the birds have left these alone but how lovely is it to see them on the plant this late on in the season. No idea on the rose yet, not seen it flower properly,

img 1686 Six on Saturday 13/01/2018

Rosemary and I am guessing this form is Miss Jessop upright, well the straight upright stems are a little bit of a giveaway! One plant we never think about using as a wall shrub, it makes a great espalier if grown on a sunny wall or 6ft fence panel! Takes a few years to get there, but well worth it, sorry got lost on another line of thought! Yes flowering remarkably early this year.

img 1675 Six on Saturday 13/01/2018

I just had to add this Sarcococca into the mix, the smell from its tiny white flowers just filled the whole garden with its scent, again without the planting plan, the size of the shrub along with the leave shape leads me to believe its hookeriana var Humilis. Great for a small garden and the scent is just out of the world!

img 1669 Six on Saturday 13/01/2018img 1685 Six on Saturday 13/01/2018

Another pruning shot, this time of a pear tree that’s been fan trained, not seen many fan trained pear trees, normally it’s the stone type fruit trees that get fan trained, once again though these trees need a bit of work to get them back into a little bit of shape, felt happy with them now I am done, will summer prune umm in the summer 🙂

I hope you enjoyed my 6 on Saturday from My clients gardens. If you did please checkout other people’s 6 on the memes founder website https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/ I love seeing other people’s plants and what’s happening in their gardens. Why not give it ago yourself next week and give me a shout so I can take a look

Until next week, have fun in the garden

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Pruning cuts-how to get them right! Part 1.

img 0590 Pruning cuts how to get them right! Part 1.

It’s the time of year we all start pruning the dormant summer and autumn flowering shrubs and trees and getting the pruning cuts can be crucial for some plants for so many reasons. First of all you have to remember that you are being a surgeon on the plant and you would hate to have someone cutting you up with a blunt tool so make sure the tool you are using is not only sharp (will be featuring a bit of sharpening soon) but clean as well, if in doubt, just spray it with so household cleaning product that kills 99.9% of all know germs dead! You know the one I mean.

img 1287 Pruning cuts how to get them right! Part 1.

Now one thing to remember is that all plants don’t heal themselves but work to reduce the damaged area to stop fungi and other diseases entering the plant. The plant first of chemical process that reduces the risk of the wound becoming infected and then it callus over in time using callus cell in the stems of the plant. This all depends on the type of shrub or tree you are pruning. Some plants can have very thin bark with a thinner layer of callus cells that can mean the cut takes much longer to heal, roses and beech trees are good examples of this. There is a difference on age of the wood too, the younger twiggy wood doesn’t heal at the wound but near the next available bud. Again that something worth remembering for in a bit.

For this next bit, I am focusing on using secateurs and loppers and will do a bit of using saws later.

img 1613 Pruning cuts how to get them right! Part 1.

First thing to look for is whether the buds are opposite each other or alternate (see pictures) this does change the angle of the cut. With plants that buds are opposite, its best to cut level just top of the buds so basically you don’t damage them. The plant will boast either one or both these buds into life in the spring. Now with alternate buds, you are looking at taking a sloping cut away just above the bud and angled so the bud is at the top of the slope. Some people think that you do that to allow the water to drain away but that’s not the main reason why, it’s done like that so the plant pushes the sap into that bud and allows that bud to break. The cut should be ideally no more than 10mm above the bud as any more above it can result in die back and the stem dying back past that next bud and down to the next, leaving more dead wood in the plant to attract in diseases. One thing to remember though, no one can get it right all the time, not even us professionals, the idea is to aim to get it right most times and try and achieve at least 80% good cuts. Hopefully the pictures below will explain a bit more.

img 1578 Pruning cuts how to get them right! Part 1.

A rose has alternative buds, as you can see there’s no bud opposite

img 1579 1 Pruning cuts how to get them right! Part 1.

While this Hydrangea has its buds opposite each other

img 1594 Pruning cuts how to get them right! Part 1.

When pruning plants with opposite buds, you aim for a level cut just above the top of the bud

img 0586 Pruning cuts how to get them right! Part 1.

This picture shows the dieback from poorly angled cuts for a rose that has alternate buds. notice the church window of doom and also the damage down into the next bud at times

img 0590 Pruning cuts how to get them right! Part 1.

The alternate bud cut at the right angle with the blue lines showing what is happening to the sap and how it pushes it towards the bud to encourage that one to break.

Well that’s the end of the first part, next time we shall look at using a pruning saw and how to make the bigger cuts with that.

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New on the site!

img 1349 New on the site!

img 1352 New on the site!

Well a few of my regular followers may of noticed that my normal mid week blog is missing this week, it’s been due to two main things, first of all a trip down to Cornwall to speak at the Cornwall Gardens SocietysDecember meetings (more about that another week!) but also my time has been spent putting the finishing touches to my couple of new webpages. A few weeks ago, I printed some blank greeting cards to sell at my talks and quite a few of you are interested in buying them, so here we go! I hope you like them! Will be adding new ones as soon as I get them printed. Would love your feedback!

img 1349 New on the site!

In the new year, I am also hoping to do a days seminar on becoming a speaker and all this will be bookable though my shop.

Please also don’t think this will make my site become commercial, I have no intention of becoming a shop first, it will always be my blog site

I hope you enjoy it

img 1350 New on the site!

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Planting bareroot roses 

img 3342 Planting bareroot roses 

As we move more towards the middle of November, the Rose nurseries start lifting the bareroot roses from the ground. What are bareroot roses I hear some of you ask? Well there’s two main ways of buying roses, first one is in a pot with compost that allows the rose to be sold all year around and planted all year around, that’s called containerised. The second way is what is called bareroot and that is just as it sounds, the Rose is dug up without any soil and is sold on like this. As there’s no soil on the roots, this can only happen during the dormant season ie the winter. Main advantages over containerised roses is the cost, generally speaking they are much cheaper to plant this way, other advantage is you can buy a wider range of roses bareroot as it is more cost effective for the growers to grow small amounts of some varieties. It is also felt that bareroot Plants also can establish better as the root system isn’t trained into a pot and will push out into the surrounding soil much better.

Whatever the reason you wish to choose, it is a great time to order and plant bareroot roses and hopefully my simple method will help you to get the best start for them if you are trying it for the first time

img 3335 11 Planting bareroot roses 
First thing you need to do is dig a hole, the hole should be ideally about 40cm square and deep. I always do square holes as it helps to force roots out of the planting hole. With circular holes, the roots can go round and round but in square holes, they can’t, they hit a corner and then have to break out into the wider bed around them
img 3336 Planting bareroot roses 
Add about a handful of good fertiliser around the hole and at the bottom of the hole. Vitax Q4 or blood, fish and bonemeal are good choices. I also add some good compost around the hole at this stage, I prefer to use garden compost or recycled green waste product like pro grow rather than manure. This is because the manure is too strong for the mycorrhizal and will kill it off
img 1720 Planting bareroot roses 
Add some form of mycorrhizal to the bare root plant , mycorrhizal is forms of friendly fungus that live on all plant roots, they form a symbolic relationship with the plant, helping it to get up more water and nutrients from the soil, this can be up to 1/3 more. It is a naturally occurring around all plants but in cases of bareroot Plants, it’s all been left behind, so they will benefit from some being added. This will help the plant establish much quicker and grow away much stronger than one without it. There’s 2 ways of adding it at this stage, best way is to use a root dip, which is a paste mixed to wallpaper paste thick and has the mycorrhizal added to and then you just dip the roses into it. This is ideal if you are planting a lot of roses
img 3338 Planting bareroot roses 
Then you put the rose carefully into the middle of the hole, I would also aim to have the base of the rose ie where all the stems are coming from, about 25mm deeper than the surrounding soil height. if you are adding dry mycorrhizal instead of the root dip, I sprinkle half on the exposed roots now
img 3340 Planting bareroot roses 
Next stage is to work the soil into the gaps around the roots using your fingers and firming it in as you go. Once I have gone halfway up, I add the rest of the dry form of mycorrhizal if I am using it

img 3342 Planting bareroot roses 
And then back fill the rest of the soil around the plant being careful not to bury the stems of the roses. All you need to do now is tidy up any rough cut stems down to a bud, remove any weaker growths down to the base and try and aim for 3-4 good stems from the root stock, if there’s less, done worry, and enjoy the rose in the summer months
 

And that is all there is to it, nice and simple. If you would like further advice, please feel free to ask away 

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Six on Saturday 28/10/17

img 0920 Six on Saturday 28/10/17

Well it doesn’t seem like a week since I was writing the one for last week, the weather that effects us gardeners more than others, ended up being pretty wet but so warm this week thankfully drying out a little towards the end of the week, with that strange yellow thing in the sky appearing for one day. The rumour is Jack Frost could be arriving this week, I wonder how tough he will be, need to get the rest of my tender plants in overcome this weekend, hopefully to save them for next years enjoyment. Anyway here are this weeks 6 highlights from my own and my clients gardens.

img 0930 Six on Saturday 28/10/17
This lovely hydrangea has decided it’s time to flower again for some reason, seems a common occurrence amongst hydrangeas this year, never mind, we get to enjoy their beautiful flowers for a little longer!
img 0919 Six on Saturday 28/10/17
Acer palmatum Dissectum Atropurpureum delights us in this garden with its purple foliage during the summer months and then turns this wonderful colour in the autumn supposed to be a slow growing shrub, it loves the clay soil on this site and is now putting on about a foot of growth every year
img 0920 Six on Saturday 28/10/17
Time for some hips and Rosa glauca is having one last throw of the delight dice, after thrilling is all summer with its grey foliage and small but perfectly formed pink flowers, it finishes the season with some great hips and I love great hips!
img 0932 Six on Saturday 28/10/17
Iris foetidissima is better known as the stinking iris mainly as the flowers and to a lesser degree the foliage just stink! It’s a horrid cat wee smell and for me the only saving graces are it is a british native, the leaves are evergreen and the seed pods are stunning,
img 0924 Six on Saturday 28/10/17
Leaf piles! Nothing and I repeat nothing says autumn more than a pile of leaves and no matter how long it takes me to produce a huge leaf ruck I can not help myself going through it and kicking some into the air, grabbing a handful and just smelling them, only to be done with fresh dry leaves I may add! Fallen leaves are the sign summer is over and the naked trees a sign winter is here
img 1040 Six on Saturday 28/10/17
Spiders spiders everywhere! Wherever you look at this time of year the evidence of spiders can be found in hedges, grass and borders. Their cobwebs are like natures own deadly decorations bringing in winter, really luck to get this one after a heavy mist the other day!
I hope you enjoyed my 6 on Saturday from both mine and a clients garden. If you did please checkout other people’s 6 on the memes founder website https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/ I love seeing other people’s plants and what’s happening in their gardens. Why not give it ago yourself next week and give me a shout so I can take a look

Until next week, have fun in the garden

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Six on Saturday- 30/09/2017

img 0778 Six on Saturday  30/09/2017

Another week has flown by, with it, it seems so has the summer. More and more plants are slowly putting their autumn clothing on  and getting ready for the winter. It’s been a odd week weather wise, a bit rain, heavy at times but also so mild and humid. The plants and gardens are still producing some beautiful moments

Well I hope you enjoy my 6 on Saturday this week, all the plants are from my garden again this week

img 0830 Six on Saturday  30/09/2017
Edgeworthii has now produced its flower buds for early spring and it looks like I am going to have a cracking display on my plant this year! Just need to add a child protection zone around it and enjoy the beautiful flowers and scent. Love watching the buds develop and slowly open up. Something to look forward to enjoying this winter
img 0824 Six on Saturday  30/09/2017
Unknown Pyracantha, it was here on the house we rent in chandlers ford when we arrived here and the great looking berries are the reason it’s still here, pain in the backside to prune it back and shape it every 3 weeks, the flowers are beautiful but stink but the berries oh the berries!
img 0829 Six on Saturday  30/09/2017
Rose climbing lady Hillingdon, one of my favourite roses and I think it’s second time up on the 6 on Saturday, but she is still flowering so well even now, at least 30 blooms on a small plant, going to be a big show for the last show of the year
img 0825 Six on Saturday  30/09/2017
Now I know The Propagator loves his bargain plants and so do I! I couldn’t resist this stunning salvia microphylla Bordeaux for only £3, hoping to over winter it and enjoy its stunning flowers all of next year
img 0832 Six on Saturday  30/09/2017
Ok ok not a brilliant photo of a stunning plant but pelargonium sidoides has really dark flowers finished off with lovely silver foliage, looks great on my patio table, certainly will try and sneak this into the kitchen windowsill for this winter
img 0778 Six on Saturday  30/09/2017
Rosa falstaff is one of my top David Austin hybrids, the flowers shape and scent remind me so much of an Heritage rose, this one was planted in the spring and really struggled to get going, then about 6 weeks ago it started growing and rewarded me with three flowers! Growing it as a low climber on my wall but makes a good shrub rose.

I hope you enjoyed my 6 on Saturday from my  garden. If you did please checkout other people’s 6 on the memes founder website https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/ I love seeing other people’s plants and what’s happening in their gardens. Why not give it ago yourself next week and give me a shout so I can take a look

Until next week, have fun in the garden

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Pruning once flowering rambling roses

img 2858 Pruning once flowering rambling roses

Pruning roses always seem to have a mist of confusion around them, no matter where I go, who I talk too or indeed listen too, roses are one plant that leaves them confused when it comes to pruning. What to prune, when to prune, taking too much off, not taking enough off. It’s no wonder really with so much Conflicting advice around in books, the internet, magazines and on telly. Hopefully over the next couple of years, I will go through my own methods of pruning and hopefully explain how I get the best from the roses I look after and hopefully make it a little clearer! 
To prune any plant no matter what it is, you have to know not only what it is, how it flowers and grows but also what you want from it. Now the first two I can help with but the 3rd is down to you to decide. First of all what it is the difference between rambling and climbing roses, this is the hardest part for most people, so many times I get asked what is the difference between a rambler and a climber. A climbing rose is basically a shrub or bush rose that grows too big to be grown without any support, as a shrub or bush rose it needs a framework of wood 2+years old in the plant to allow it to flower the best. While a rambler is the true climber, it uses long growths to scrabble over anything it’s path whether it’s a tree, building, rock face or even the ground. These new growths can be up to 25ft in one year depending on the variety grown. These new stems are the best for producing flowers the following year, i.e. Wood that’s  1 year old at time of flowering. The 2nd year old wood tends to produce smaller flowers on the growths, but also produces new longer stems further from the base which maybe too long to use on a frame or a structure. These long and mainly flexible current growing stems makes them ideal for wrapping around features like poles, ropes and arches. This also encourages the rose to flower from the bottom to the top. There are 2 types of ramblers, the repeat flowering and the once flowering. It is the once flowering ones we are looking at during this blog. Again once flowering rambling can be divided up into 2 types, those who produce hips and those that don’t. Pruning is the same for both, just the hip forming ones can be done in February while the none hip forms can be done now or once they have flowered. Reason being that all the flowering wood is removed to encourage these new growths to grow even more. This is because with removing the flowered wood, it puts more effort and energy into the new wood and this will grow even more  after pruning. That said a weekly feed of liquid seaweed and a handful of vitax Q4 after pruning will help it to grow even more. I hope the picture guide will help explain it even more 

img 0175 Pruning once flowering rambling roses
The rambling rose once it’s finished flowering showing both flowered wood and new growth
img 0176 Pruning once flowering rambling roses
The new growth! This is what you want! Please please please don’t cut these off, try and tie in during the season before flowering
img 0185 1 Pruning once flowering rambling roses
Prune back the flowered stems to a nice new growth, always find its best to do this for all stems can thin out older ones or not as good ones after you have finished and have a chance to review what’s left
img 0186 Pruning once flowering rambling roses
Once I have pruned the stem, I lay it at right angles to the base of the plant so it out of the way and all together
img 0190 Pruning once flowering rambling roses
Once all the flowered wood is pruned away, I start tying in the new growth, using the longest ones growing from the base if possible, tying them to cover as much as possible
img 0193 Pruning once flowering rambling roses
I like to use a figure of 8 knot to secure the new growth to the fixings, don’t tie it too tight or the string will dig into the plant as it grows
img 0199 Pruning once flowering rambling roses
I try and train the stems in curves to encourage as many breaks of the flower growths next year as I can, it can also be useful to cover a bigger space with the really long growths, the shorter ones I use to cover the bare patches near the base of the plant.
img 0196 Pruning once flowering rambling roses
The finished pruned plant, note the amount of waste produced, pruning like this does produce a lot of waste, all there is left to do now is feed the plant with Vitax Q4 and tie in the new growth once every 2weeks and enjoy the flowers next summer
img 2858 Pruning once flowering rambling roses
The rose flowering the following year
img 3860 Pruning once flowering rambling roses
This rambling rector is spread out more but is still pruned the same way
img 3866 Pruning once flowering rambling roses
This rambler is pruned the same way but the new growths are wrapped around the pillar, going both clock and anti-clockwise
011 Pruning once flowering rambling roses
The new growths can be turned into any shape you like and will flower well!

Really they are that easy, just a case of removing the old flowered wood and tie in the new stems, they are really as simple as that. I tend to use just my silky pruning saw, my trust Tobisho SR1 secateurs to prune and nutscene 3ply twine to tie in. 

I hope you enjoyed the blog and found it useful! 

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The curse of the rose sawfly

img 0253 The curse of the rose sawfly

img 0110 The curse of the rose sawfly

It almost sounds like a horror movie, well it could well be if you get them on your roses. The large Rose sawfly, Arge pagana, has really increased over the last couple of years and is becoming a real problem on roses. This beautiful insect gets its name sawfly by the way it lays its eggs, it has a sawlike egg laying dagger that it uses to cut into the rose stems to lay its eggs, these cuts can be from 25mm to 75mm in length and it's quite amazing to watch it. Once the eggs are laid, they hatch quite quickly into caperpillers. These little beasts are again pretty obvious compared to other caterpillars. If you get near them, they stick their bodies out trying to look like the veins on a chewed leave, if that doesn't work, its next trick is to fall to the ground and once safe, the crafty little so and so's, then climb back up the plant once the danger has gone! Don't let that fool you though, they will strip your rose bare of leaves faster than you can believe and having up to 3 broods a year, well worth looking out for their tale tell signs of the scar on the young stems on the roses.
img 0253 The curse of the rose sawfly
Treatment is pretty easy on smaller roses, if you notice the cut lines in time, just cut out the damaged section and add to the green bin or rubbish bags. If they have hatched into hungry caterpillars, place your hand underneath to catch any that will drop off the plant and just squash them in your fingers! If you are a little Squeamish, best way is to put a tray underneath the branch and tap them onto it and then add to green waste bin. If they are really covering the plant or covering a climbing rose, spraying maybe the only choice, sometimes putting a white sheet underneath and then try and blast them off with a high pressure blast of water and stamp on what falls down or collect into a plastic tub and leave them out for the birds otherwise a spraying with something like provado will kill most of them on the plant, try and spray first thing in the morning or last thing at night to avoid other insects. This is always a last resort for me. I prefer to use as little insecticides as possible. 

Anyway just watch out for these little beasties on your roses before they strip them of most their leaves!
img 1248 1 The curse of the rose sawfly

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Rose of the week- Buff beauty 

rosa buff beauty 2 Rose of the week  Buff beauty 

rosa buff beauty6 Rose of the week  Buff beauty 
This is the last rose of the week this week as I will be going back to the plant of the week not because the rose season is over, indeed far from it, the roses in my garden are still flowering away so well, just feel I want to carry on exploring other plants, with the Butterfly count starting, I think it would be great to focus on plants that butterflies love as well, during the survey time. 

rosa buff beauty 2 Rose of the week  Buff beauty 
So on with the Rose of the week and I have left one of the best roses until last, buff beauty. This rose brings back memories of childhood as my dad planted one alongside a path to the White House ( no not The White House!) that grew into a fine specimen, pretty disease free and full of these beautiful buff yellow colour flowers, delightly scented and flowered all summer long. Buff Beauty is a hybrid musk rose, a wonderful group of roses are thought to be a cross between rosa multiflora, chinensis and moschata and the hybrid teas from early 20th century. These crosses were started by the Rev Joseph Pemperton at his home, the round house, Havering atte bower, Romford, Essex, a house he was both born (1852)and died (1926). He wanted to bred roses like he remembered from his childhood visits to his grandmas houses, rose that not only looked beautiful but also smelt wonderful! And he succeeded with this wonderful range of plants. We know one of the parents and that’s William Allen Richardson, (a beautiful yellow noisette) sadly not the other. But there’s also a little confusion about whether he did bred the rose, it was introduced by Ann Bentall, in 1936. Ann was the daughter of Pemerton’s head gardener and it is thought she introduced it from his garden. Others have said she wanted to carry on his rose breeding programme and bred this rose and another. My feeling is that it’s the first version that is true, looks so much like his type of breeding, I may aso be incorrect. 

img 5740 Rose of the week  Buff beauty 
No matter where it came from, its a great great garden plant, I have used it as a small climber, shrub and a bush rose to great effect, as a bush I prune it down to 300mm in the spring and then it responds with 600mm lengths of growth. It will make about 1.5-1.75m in height as a climber and it works so well with underplanting of blues, as I have said it’s pretty disease free and will grow away quite happy on most soils as long as it well fed. 

It can be brought from most of the main rose dealers like David Austin roses, Peter Beales and Trevor White Roses. 

img 1296 Rose of the week  Buff beauty 

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6 on Saturday, 15/07/2017

img 0427 2 6 on Saturday, 15/07/2017

Well I thought I wouldn’t be able to join in again this week, but nature has a way of proving us wrong and issuing out more delights for us to enjoy in our gardens and that’s certainly been the case this week, with plants just starting their 2nd or even 3rd flush in my small Hampshire garden. Well here’s my 6 for this week, I hope you enjoy seeing them on the web as much as I enjoy them in my garden

img 0423 11 6 on Saturday, 15/07/2017
Leucanthemum x superba ‘Little Miss Muffet’ is another new plant for my garden, I planted it out in April this year, I love the daisy like flowers on the lecanthemums but never like the height, this small version should get to about 25cm tall, perfect for my borders
img 0113 6 on Saturday, 15/07/2017
Geranium traversi var elgans is a delightful and very frustrating little Hardy geranium, also know as Chatham island geranium, this beauty hates winter moisture, indeed its taken me 6 winters to get this beauty though the winter, in the end a 60/40 grit and soil mix worked for me and made me very happy indeed, it’s a great little plant, well worth the effort!
img 0111 6 on Saturday, 15/07/2017
This delightful clematis is well a mystery to me, came in as vitacella alba luxurians and it’s certainly not got the lovely white and green delicate flowers of alba luxurians, it’s a form of viticella just need to work out which it is, sadly not going to stay where it is as I planted it next to a lovely dark rose called Falstaff, sadly I don’t think it’s going to work.
img 0115 6 on Saturday, 15/07/2017
Ah the great rose Lady Hillingdon makes it onto my super 6 on Saturday after being rose of the week a few weeks ago, this rose has really taken off this year and is making a great plant, just starting its 3rd flush of the summer with me now. It’s sentimental for me really as any house I have called home had one of these growing on the wall.
img 0114 6 on Saturday, 15/07/2017
Salvia gregii ‘Icing Sugar’ another tough plant, its needs to be with me and this pot, I always try to repot it every year, just haven’t this year with my leg but it’s still flowering well, will flower all summer up until winter months. The foliage is also wonderfully scented and it has managed to survive many winters with me. I also love the name!
img 0116 6 on Saturday, 15/07/2017
Sempervivum ‘Lilac Time’ its flowering 🙂 I find the flowers of house leeks so beautiful, coupled with the foliage and tight form, it is one of the very best of the sempervivums and is quite often used for showing as well. It’s another in my lovely alpine trough too
 
Well that’s my 6 on Saturday, I hope you enjoyed them! This brilliant meme is hosted by https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/, there’s some other very good 6 on Saturday there, please take a look and enjoy them, I know I will 

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Rose of the week- Stanwells perpetual 

stanwell perpetual Rose of the week  Stanwells perpetual 

stanwell perpetual Rose of the week  Stanwells perpetual 
This rose is a slight oddity, it doesn’t fit into the ‘normal’ brackets of our garden roses that we like to add them too, it even doesn’t quite fit into wild shrub rose bracket I like to add the more species based roses into. But that doesn’t make it a bad rose, it just means we humans can’t add it into a ‘bracket’ like we do to understand things. So why is it so difficult to label? Well it’s a cross between rosa pimpinellifolia and an autumn damask rose that happened by accident in a garden in stanwell, Middlesex. It was introduced a few years later by Lee of Hammersmith in 1838. The rose pimpinellifolia is a suckering wild shrub that can be found around Europe including the UK, it tends to flavour a poorish soil and will take over sand dunes quite happily. 

rosa stanwell perpeual Rose of the week  Stanwells perpetual rosa stanwell perpetual Rose of the week  Stanwells perpetual 
It does make a shrub up to 5ft tall if allowed but it does make a pretty lax plant that needs the support of the older branches, the thorns are pretty fine and very numerous on the shrub but that adds to its charm added to the greyish green fine foliage that makes a brilliant drop back for the lovely pale pink quartered flowers that have the most delightful scent, that are indeed are borne all summer long and well into the autumn months followed by some large black hips. It is a beautiful rose, one that is at home in a border and also at home in the more wild parts of the garden and was indeed Gertrude Jekylls favourite rose to plant into this type of area. Normally such heavenly quartered flowers aren’t good for bees but this one is the exception and will attract bees in quite happily. It is also an exceptionally tough rose, it will take all soil conditions apart from heavy clay and will also take a shady spot in the garden. In her book of roses, Gertrude Jekyll, recommends planting them 1ft apart to form a self supporting group, from my experience, I would agree with her and found it does make a better specimen if treated like that, otherwise it makes a pretty arching shrub. Can be trained into a informal hedge as well. Pruning is dead easy, almost as easy as rambling roses! Any long growths reduced by 2/3rds and remove expired wood and that’s it! Pretty disease free as well. A great rose to start with! 

Can be brought from most nurseries and garden centres as well as being seen in most good gardens. 

stanwell perpetual 2 Rose of the week  Stanwells perpetual 

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6 on Saturday 

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Well felt it was right to join in with another garden blogging friend, The Propagater, www.thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com with his idea of 6 plants of interest each week on a Saturday. Sadly my garden is quite small, indeed even a couple of postage stamps would struggle to fit into my garden, so for me, it might be every couple of weeks, otherwise it would the same ones every week! 

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My first is the paper like flowers of Catanache caerula, a tough little Herbaceous plant that’s a member of the daisy family. It gets to about 18inches high in my garden and loves a nice sunny spot here in my borders 

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Next one has to be a rose, this one is a rambler called ‘Blushing Lucy’ and was planted about 3yrs ago to cover my dividing wall with my neighbours. This year, it’s finally got going this year with some great new growth,so it’s looking even better for next year 

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Gaura RosyJane is one of Rosemary Hardys finds and it is one of my favourite Gauras. They are a plant that’s gained a bit of favour in the last few years and rightly so, need a sunny free draining spot in your garden

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Hydrangea quercifolia ‘Applause’ only the second year of this beauty in my garden, I have a love of oak leaved hydrangeas and this form I brought from Head Gardeners Plants down in the new forest, really doing well in my free draining chandlers ford garden 

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Armeria maritima ‘Pride of DĂĽsseldorf’ time for a little alpine and I do like my alpines, this beautiful form of sea thrift loves my alpine pot, built with fossils me and my boy found in Dorset a couple of years ago, like all Armeria needs a free draining soil.

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Geranium ‘Azure Rush’ well it looks a little like Rozanne but it’s a lot lower growing and pretty well behaved. It doesn’t take over the borders but gives you a summer of flowers. Well worth growing! 

Well that’s my 6 for this week, will be back in 2 weeks time with another 6 I hope! Until then, I hope you enjoy these ones