After missing last month’s opportunity, things are looking very different two months on from my first and last retrospective at the end of May. I hadn’t quite realised just how much everything had expanded until I looked back at my last post – this meme, hosted by Helen, is such a useful way to track progress of the “bigger picture” that is not so apparent day by day.
The small isolated square of border by the fence billows with the foliage of the cosmos, atop which ride their airy pink and white flowers. The knautia macedonica continues to puncture the greenery with its crimson cushions, and the rest of the bed seems to be settling in well, the hydrangea quercifolia looking happy at the back with two cardoons putting up impressive foliage on either side.
Across the other side of the garden, the border along the field has seen an amazing transformation. I hadn’t quite realised just how much the sambucus nigra had grown until I compared pictures. The rudbeckia (R. fulgida var. speciosa) raised from seed last year and nursed through the winter in the greenhouse have also expanded, and are just about to flower beside the elder.
Neither was I aware quite how much the white leucanthemum daisies that survived in this border had expanded – despite my already having had to transplant some cosmos and ammi majus that had been swallowed up by its edges.
I absolutely love the combination of white daisies and ethereal ammi majus, punctuated with points of colour from cosmos, echinacea, lupins and larkspurs against the dark leaves of the black elder behind.
Since the end of May, we were able to expand this border further along towards the house too, and while the planting at this end is still more sparse, nonetheless it seems to be establishing well, despite the sweep of the prevailing winds across the fields.
The vegetable garden has swollen and grown too, the squash and pumpkins sprawling across their allotted space, while we have been harvesting more crops including the first fennel bulbs and French beans, dwarf and climbing. The sweetcorn, though still small, has also begun to flower.
Another new section of border just below the raised patio and path that were completed a few weeks’ ago is beginning to settle in, with trellis added for the clematis at the back.
Behind the salvia nemorosa ‘Caradonna’, I added an achillea ptarmica ‘The Pearl’, that my mum bought for me at one of Jekka’s open days last weekend on their way down to visit us. This had been on my wish list since seeing it at RHS Wisley earlier in the month.
And this weekend we added a new narrow bit of border along the side of the house between the path and the field. This faces directly south, with no protection from the sun or wind, and I planted this with some of the mediterranean herbs that tolerate hot dry ground; thyme, rosemary, sage and oregano, edged with hyssop raised from seed, and interspersed with lavender and aubretia seedlings also raised from seed. At the end I added the centranthus ruber that I bought at the Crocus open day earlier in the month, and a white centranthus (‘White Cloud’) that again my mum brought me from Jekka’s open day last weekend on request. Hopefully this bed should fill up in time with colour and scent.
What changes we are seeing at the moment still! Onwards we go, and I wonder what progress we will be able to claim in another month’s time.