Monthly Archives: September 2015

More Recycling

As you know I am always being given odd things that I usually find a home for. For many years I have had a few  cutlery holders you know what I mean, wooden containers to go into a drawer. Well I have been using these as a means of keeping buttons tidy. That was one use, but as I had several and the buttons were being sorted and some  given away I needed to find another another use for an empty one.

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After painting with some old emulsion paint mixed with artists acrylic paint I lined the inside with some wrapping paper from my stash and hey presto a neat little display shelf just right for small items. Ta Dah…..

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All Summer Long

Flowers bloom and fade and that’s usually the last you will see of them until the next season, but there are several plants that go beyond this, these are the stalwarts of my garden. Flowering from the early spring right up until the cold pushes them back to ground. Some of my favourite are the perennial wallflowers especially Erysimum ‘Bowles’s Mauve’.

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Flowering from very early spring my one large plant has flowered all year. It makes a huge plant but tucked into a corner it fills this space with long stems with more always waiting in the wings. I have taken dozens of cuttings as they strike very easily. These are going on the allotment soon to over winter. They will be ready for the garden opening next year.

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This is Erysimum ‘Red Jep’. I bought this a few years ago from West Green House Gardens and I can honestly say the apart from snow and ice nothing has stopped it flowering. This is a neat compact plant again striking easily from cuttings.

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This is Erysimum ‘Orange Bedder’ and that’s what I thought it would do, be a bedding plant for the spring. No, this is another perennial that just keeps on giving. The orange looking fantastic with all the purples in the garden, salvia, verbena and the bluey/purple hydrangea. I have several more on the allotment ready to bring home.

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I have to thank Plant World Seeds for this poppy. Grown from seed many years ago Papaver Ruprifragrum ‘Orange Feathers’. A hardy perennial that is never without flower. As the evening closes in, the flowers drop giving you another show the next day. I find dead heading and a little snipping off of the spent stems encourages more and more flowers. At around 60cms tall they are excellent at the front of a border with their soft billowy habit.

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Now I must have a fairly sheltered garden as this salvia hardly ever gets cut down to the ground. I think it could be Salvia microphylla, making a shrub of about 125cms and flowering all summer, with a bonus of aromatic foliage. I just take off the flowering stems to encourage more. And again I take cuttings for insurance and to sell.

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Now who couldn’t be without Viola Cornuta ? I have it seeding all over the garden but without being a nuisance. They get a hair cut two or three times a year, with light and dark purple plus white. You never know what you are going to get, but I do covet the white. As you can see in the picture they make a good edge to the lawn.

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This is one plant that I couldn’t do without while I have the G/Daughters young. they know they can pick what they want of these and they also race them down the rill from the top pond to the bottom. That’s pleasure enough from one small flower with a rather long name, Erigeron Karvinskianus.

As well as starting to rearrange plants in the garden, with all the hard work I know is to come, I like to sit with a cuppa and take stock of what has done well and what has failed miserably. You can see above what has been successful but not many of the sub tropicals have done well, canna and dahlia have put on a poor show, a lack of sun and heat. The early roses were poor and generally failed to recover well after several attacks from rose sawfly. I am very reluctant to spray but I am losing my patience. It might be one more year then they may go and there will have to be another large rethink. On the whole though this year has been my most floriferous with the borders being continually in flower. A lot of forward planning goes into this as this is where I get most of my enjoyment from, I think I’m a born planner.

So here’s to an Indian Summer in the UK, some gorgeous late colour and to some successful rejigging of the borders…… Sue

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New from Old (a spot of recycling )

A few days ago I saw a jacket in Oxfam, a lovely autumn colour and only £9-99. It had to be done. It just had one problem, the shoulders were quite droopy. I can’t make out the age of the jacket, it could be 80’s 90’s but it could also be as early as the 40’s 50′. Either way I love the shape and the colour, so a little tweaking and reshaping on the shoulders a quick de-pill and I now have a presentable jacket that will see me through the next few months.

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The label on the jacket.

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Jacket fits nicely apart from the shoulders.

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Sleeve head out.

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Trimmed and reset.

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New shoulder pads and the lining to hand stitch in.

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Sleeve head and shoulder looking a lot more tailored.

So for a little effort and all for under a tenner my autumn jacket is ready.

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