In a Vase on Monday: What I Call Summer

The weather has taken a turn for the better the past few days – not too hot and no longer humid. Now this is what I call summer! Temperatures are in the mid 20s, and there is a light breeze… ahhh.

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My golden vases are filled with Cosmos Brightness Mixed (orange), Cosmos Xanthos (which is not as yellow as advertised, but a lovely creamy colour), Cosmos Purity (white), Achillea, Fennel, Tithonia, Golden Euonymus foliage, Scabiosa ochroleuca and a Sedum bud.

The tubular vases contain Sunflower Valentine, Tithonia and Echinacea Cheyenne Spirit (a new one in a pot again this year as they never survive the slugs in spring in the ground)…

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Have you noticed someone has been nibbling the petals…

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Whoever it was thankfully left the Cosmos Xanthos intact. I really like this new Cosmos flower which I have grown from seed for the first time…

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Finally a look at my sunflowers from the local “Blumenfeld” where you can pick Sunflowers, Gladioli and later Dahlias too, just for a few cents.

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And the remains of last week’s vase are still looking very pleasing too…

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Thanks to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting this lovely meme. Do visit her, or even better join us all as we share flowers from our gardens across the globe each week!

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Thursday’s Feature: Succisella inflexa

Scabious and Knautia are two members of the Teasel family that have found a home in my rockery. But today, as I join Kimberley at Cosmos and Cleome for her Thursday meme, I am featuring another member of this family – the relatively unknown  Succisella inflexa (Moorabbiss), almost the same as Succisa inflexa.

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It starts flowering in July or August and will continue until the first frost. Like Scabious, the bees and butterflies love it…

Succisella and ButterflySummer Map Butterfly (Araschnia levana)

The buds are slightly pink, the flowers icy white, with just a tinge of violet to them.

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Succisa plants are supposedly happiest on damp ground or wet meadows… well, this year they have certainly had more rain than usual, but I have had several beautiful, healthy plants thriving on dry, well-drained soil in the full sun in drought years too! However, I should point out that mine is a cultivated specimen: Succisella inflexa “Frosted Pearls”, which differs from the wild ones in that it is a little shorter (about 2ft high), and has longer leaves.

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I love this plant for its dainty petals and delicate colour.

It is not invasive in my garden, but is easy to remove if it seeds itself where not wanted. It is very hardy, tolerates heat and drought as well as poor soil, and needs no special care – perfect for the middle of the inaccessible parts of the rockery. (The slugs and snails also pay it no attention).

😀

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Do visit Kimberley to see what she has featured this week, and why not join in too!

(P.S. Most of these pictures are from a post I did a few years ago, which you can read here. And I also featured this plant here. )

The Tuesday View: 2nd August 2016

The summer is flying by and the garden is progressing too. We had rain all day Sunday, which made the Perovskia droop somewhat, and today it is raining again – I picked the perfect 5 minute interval in showers for these photos of the rockery today, and the sun almost came out – two minutes later it was raining again!

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And from a few steps higher…

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The Persicaria foliage and red spiky flowers make up for the fact that the red rose is only showing a few flowers at the moment…

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And the Scabiosa ochroleuca is now in full bloom in front of the Perovskia…

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… then there are also these dear little white flowers, which have spread around the rockery: Succisella inflexa ‘Frosted Pearls’…

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The bees love it as much as I do and were there the moment the rain stopped.

I wonder how the month has begun in your garden. Do share your view so we can see how it progresses through the seasons.

Happy August!

In a Vase on Monday: Diversity

The word “diversity” pops up in all sorts of contexts these days, but as I picked the flowers for my vase this morning I was very aware of the diversity of shapes and textures as well as the origins of my plants. The dictionary definition included the following: “the quality or state of having many different forms, types, etc….. different cultures in a group…”. Very appropriate, as I look at the native wild Teucrium, Japanese anemones, Hydrangeas and mint, to name but a few…

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I shall try and list all the flowers and foliage I included – I did go a bit overboard, but wanted something big this week!

Silver birch foliage, Japanese anemone, Buddleia alternifolia stem, Buddleia buds, Hydrangeas (deep red and pale pink), Heuchera, Apple mint, Perovskia, various grasses, Teucrium (wild T. chamaedrys and T. hircanicum), Zinnias, a white Cleome, a sedum bud, Geranium phaeum, and a pink antirrhinum.

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The Cleome certainly looks exotic, with its spidery petals, and yet the Anemones are so familiar it is hard to imagine European gardens without them. All these foreigners crowding into gardens do create greater diversity indeed.

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I wonder how many plants in my garden are actually of German/ Central European origin!

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… something for me to ponder over during the summer.

Thanks as always to Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for hosting this meme.

😀

The Tuesday View: 26th July 2016

My view today is actually from Monday – luckily I had already taken some photos yesterday, late afternoon, as I knew rain was forecast for today… in actual fact it rained shortly after taking these pictures too. I think Bavaria has shifted somewhere nearer the tropics and our humidity is rising daily!

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Most years the ferns, bottom left, are scorched and shrivelled by now – I usually cut them right back around the summer equinox, but with this year’s weather where we get regular heavy rain they might even last until the autumn!

The Perovskia is glowing like a blue beacon, with the Scabiosa ochroleuca in front now flowering too…

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… and the Perovskia is also humming from the sound of bees…

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I couldn’t resist showing another picture of my beloved Crocosmia, with the yellow Potentilla shrub as a backdrop…

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And here is the view from a slightly different angle, photographed from the top of the steps instead of halfway down. I miss the Centranthus this year, which has almost completely gone over. I will have to think of another filler for high summer in case this happens regularly in future…

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I hope you will join me in focusing on one view each Tuesday, to see how it changes through the seasons.

What is attracting the bees to your garden right now, and is your view still lush and green?

In a Vase on Monday: Garden Joy

After using wild flowers recently, my Monday vases this week are made up of flowers from my garden alone.

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The first has a snapdragon as its centre piece, then Verbena, Perovskia, Heuchera and Allium encircled by Japanese Anemones.

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~~~

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The second has a yellow Achillea at the centre, as well as a small pale pink Hydrangea with yellow tinges.

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It also includes yellow Marigolds, a Clematis tangutica bud, a sprig of Euonymus foliage, some fading Sage and a Nigella seedhead.

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It’s amazing what fits into a small vase, but I shall have to watch them carefully to keep them topped up with water.

The Crocosmia in the background is wonderful, and on the far right you can see the Lythrum I featured last week.

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Do join in and share the joy of your garden in vase – or at least visit our host, Cathy at Rambling in the Garden, and some of the other vase-makers linking in from around the world.

😀

Thursday’s Feature: Lythrum salicaria

This Thursday I am joining Kimberley at Cosmos and Cleome again in featuring a plant growing in my garden. Until choosing this plant for my feature today, I was unaware of its common name Purple Loosestrife, as I only knew the botanical name Lythrum salicaria and the German name ‘Blutweiderich’. I had heard of Purple Loosestrife, but never put two and two together!

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Lythrum loves damp ground, so this year it has done much better than usual. It is one of the few plants that I water if it is dry. It grows down near our river, where it gets taller than mine – this one is just 50cm tall but in the wild with the right conditions I have seen it about 80cm tall too.

It is a fantastic plant for pollinators of all kinds, especially bees and hoverflies…

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Lythrum appears late, with the first leaves visible only after the last tulips have flowered.  It is therefore useful for areas where spring bulbs leave a gap. And in autumn the foliage turns orangey red, prolonging the interest. But the flowers are what I grow it for in this area reserved predominantly for herbs. And it has had many herbal uses in the past; as a diuretic, for stopping bleeding, for stomach disorders and even for skin problems.

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The Nigella seedheads are a happy coincidence, reflecting the pinky red of the flowers and buds. The yellow in the background is St John’s Wort.

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Do you grow this flower, or have you seen it growing nearby?

Thanks to our host once more – do go and visit Kimberley to see what she is featuring this week.

🙂