April Cut Flower Round-up…

Today I have planted the final seeds for the cut flower beds, there have been a few changes to the original plans but most seeds are in now, so here’s a quick round-up.

Bed 1

  • Euphorbia Oblongata/Spurge (HA) x 4
  • Cerinth Major Purpurascens/Honeywort (HA) 2 Rows x 5 each

Both of the above are growing from last year, the Euphorbia gets a haircut in Autumn and then re-grows and sadly most of the Cerinth Major seedlings growing from Autumn were badly frost damaged but I moved some remaining self sown seedlings into the cutting patch and they are slowly growing.

This bed also contains some Spring Bulbs but I’ll photograph them next week when the tulips have opened.

Bed 2

  • Salvia Viridis/Sage – Blue Clary (HA) x 5
  • Bupleurum (HA) x 5

The seeds for both of these have been sewn direct last week, I had hoped to have seedlings self seeded from last year already on the go, but again, the harsh Winter killed them off.

  • Zinnia Elegans – Sprite Mix (HHA) 2 Rows x 5 each
  • Nicotiana Alata/Tabacco Plant – Lime Green (HHA) 2 Rows x 5 each

These have been sown in-doors today and I’ll move the seedlings into place once they have germinated.

  • Salvia Paterns/Sage (HHA) x 5
  • Antirrhinum/Snapdragon – Crimson Classic (HHA) x 5

These were cut back to the ground last Autumn and covered with a long cloche over Winter, again it looks like they have died but I’ll continue to water them and see what happens.  I will re-place them with bought plants if needed as it’s too late to sow seed for Anthirrhinum now and I’ve had little success growing my own Salvia Paterns in the past.

Bed 3

  • Calendula Officialis/Marigold – Indian Prince (HA) x 4

Seeds are in direct outside, no seedlings survived the Winter.

  • Nigella Damascena/Love-in-a-mist – Deep Blue (HA) x 5
  • Nigella Hispanica/Love-in-a-mist (HA) x 5

These did survive and are growing nicely.

  • Zinnia – Deep Red (HHA) x 5
  • Bupleurum (HA) x 5
  • Zinnia – Giant Dahlia Mix (HHA) x 5
  • Amaranthus Caudatus/Love-lies-bleeding – Viridis (HHA) 2 Rows x 4 each

All the above have been planted as seeds in-doors today, except the Bupleurum which has been sown direct.

Bed 4

  • Helianthus Annuus/Sunflower – Chianti (HA) 2 Rows x 4 each

The evil little fat Pigeons have eaten my Sunflower seedlings which were started a while back and recently moved outdoors.  I have started new seed in the Greenhouse.

  • Ammi Majus/Cow Parsley (HA) x 4

Seed has been planted direct last week.

  • Centaurea Cyanus/Cornflower – Blue Boy (HA) x 4

Yeah!  These have survived Winter and are doing well.

  • Malope Trifida Vulcan (HA) x 3

I have no seed left so have planted Dill instead.

  • Cosmos – Purity (HHA) x 3

Seed planted in the Greenhouse last week.

  • Scabiosa – Black Cat (HA) x 3

No seed left…not sure what I will put in it’s place yet.

  • Cosmos – Dazzler (HHA) x 3

Seed planted in the Greenhouse last week.

So that’s it, a quick catch-up of the raised flower beds and hopefully the start of a nice supply of cut flowers for the house over the next few months.

August Flowers…and sorry!

I bet you were wondering where I have been?  Well, the summer holidays have slightly taken their toll, Mummy duty has been full on (I am writing this sitting in the living room as Mr C can’t be left alone with F, who is terrorising him at every opportunity).  Also, The Linen Cat has been having a sale which has meant a lot of packing and posting and some hasty panic sewing of new stock to fill the gaps.

Owl lavender bags about to be posted

Owl lavender bags about to be posted

This along with a complete lack of rain and not enough watering from me has resulted in slightly neglected garden, and blog, I feel suitably guilty and need to get everything back up to speed.

Right, the cutting garden is still producing:

  • Helianthus Annus/Sunflower – Red Sun
  • Amaranthus Caudatus – Viridis’
  • Centura Cyanus/CornflowerBlue Boy
  • Salvia ViridisBlue Clary
  • CosmosDazzler
  • Salvia Patens
  • Nicotiana AlataLime Green
  • CosmosPurity
  • Bupleurum

I have to admit that at this time of writing some of the above are getting very scratty and a number have produced seed heads but I am still picking large amounts of Cosmos and Sunflowers (warning!  bad photo alert!):

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The boarders are still pitiful, very dry and with little colour, I will correct this for next year with plenty of late summer plants to fill the gaps, for this year I want to concentrate on making sure the cutting garden is planted up in September with new Hardy Annuals that will survive winter and give early flowers next year.  This is made a lot easier by the fact that most of my Hardy Annuals self seed, I prefer to plant in the same spots so I just give a shake of the dry plants as I lift them, give the soil a rake and water to allow the seeds to settle in then move the seedlings into position once they have sprouted.

I have also saved quite a lot of seed this year.  The dry weather and my total neglect of the garden has left me with quite a few dry seedheads so I figured I may as well pack them up.

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Above, you can see Sweet pea ‘Matucana’, Nigella Hispanica and Damascena both of which produce beautiful seed heads which I also use in cut flower arrangements.  I now need to draw up plans for next year’s cutting beds (I will post these, along with photos of the planned plants and instructions on planting Hardy Annuals and Biennials) and get planting so the seedlings have time to settle in before the weather turns cold.