New plants for the flowerbed near the kitchen

As the slugs have eaten a whole load of the new plants I’d put in, the flowerbed near the kitchen has been looking a bit bare (which, realistically, means more bloody creeping yellow buttercup).  I had a load of foxglove seedlings in the cold frame that were getting a bit leggy – the instructions on the packet said to plant them out in October but no chance.

So I ended up putting a load in the wildflower meadow, the lower garden, the upper bank, the bed at the bottom of the garden and the bed by the kitchen (I had loads of plants).

These are a bit leggy – I hope they become more cabbagy soon
Bed with the foxgloves in

I assume that (as they are poisonous) the slugs won’t eat them.  They aren’t terribly pretty as the plants but when they flower they are glorious – for about three weeks.

Carrots

We’re a bit later than I’d intended but a couple of days ago, we sowed our carrot seeds.

Bed for carrots

The bed wasn’t too weedy as I’d covered it in wood chippings over the winter.  My husband spent far longer than I would have raking through the compost and breaking up the clay.  Still, we will probably get better results.

The seeds we sowed were one set of easy-grow, early cropping orange carrots and one set of multi-coloured carrots that I suspect won’t grow as easily.  There were about 2,500 seeds in the first packet and 200 in the second so I should think we’ll get a lot more of the “standard” carrots in any case.

I really need to sort out a couple of flowerbeds.  One in particular is a weedy, grassy disgrace.  I wonder whether it would be worth putting a load of lavender and herbs in there?  I had meant to make it more “fancy” but anything is better than what I have at present.  And oregano would be great at going to battle with the weeds.

Spring?

Last weekend, we went to the IoW.  Although it is still winter (at least until 1 March), quite a few daffodils and blossom were out.  I even saw my first bumblebee (I was in the kitchen and didn’t have my camera or I would have taken a photo).

Primroses!
Primroses!

The primroses are looking very pretty.  Last year I planted a whole bunch of more exotic primroses – so far they haven’t appeared.  Perhaps it is a bit early or perhaps they just haven’t survived.

Little daffodils
Little daffodils

The little daffodils are out and the big daffodils are appearing.  I haven’t seen any sign of the alliums – I don’t think they came back last year so perhaps it is the wrong spot for them.

There are quite a few beds that are an utter disgrace.  Weedy, full of grass, just plain looking awful.  When it stops raining, I will sort those those out.

New rose and bark chippings

Some friends came round last week and gave me a miniature rose with white flowers.  Now that I’d done some weeding, I did, finally, have some spaces between my plants.  I had rather a dilemma as to where to put it though – my rose garden is walled so you only see small plants when you look directly down into it.  However, I have a policy that the children Are Not Allowed In The Rose Garden Because There Are Prickles.  So it does seem rather unreasonable to put a rose somewhere that isn’t the rose garden.  Plus, the miniature rose was a prickly bugger.

I ended up planting it in the front of the rose garden.

My new rose!  And some bark chippings
My new rose! And some bark chippings

Now, a few people (I think including you, Kal?) have recommended that I put down bark chippings to try to control the weeds.  I’d resisted, for ridiculous reasons like occasionally I like the weeds and weeding is good exercise.  However, it was getting ridiculous so I ended up putting some down.

We’d had them for a little while so when I opened the packet, they smelt.   My sister in law said the chippings smelt of vomit.  I decided that they smelt more of someone’s cheesy, garlic arse when they hadn’t washed for around a week to ten days.

Anyway, I spread 200 litres of bark chippings on my rose garden, around the hydrangeas on the terrace and bunged the leftovers on the front flowerbed.  I’ll put more down when I do an Autumn prune; I estimate that I need another 600 litres.

Lovely plants

The other day, I noticed this bindweed.  Bindweed is such nasty stuff – t wraps itself round plants and smothers them.  I am on a constant mission to get rid of it.

Bindweed - you don't want this in your garden
Bindweed – you don’t want this in your garden

However, I do think the flowers are rather beautiful.  It used to grow in a graveyard near my house when I was young and something about it is very witchy and spooky.

I also love this rosa alba that I noticed on a bed on the New North Road.  It looks great, smells amazing and is super for bees.

Rosa Alba
Rosa Alba