Every year the Clivia put on the most magnificent show. There is a cream plant at one end (nearest the terrace), and I noticed that the plant at the other end (nearest the spring bulb garden) is much more vibrant in colour – I am not sure if it is a different variety or if it is just because of where it is situated… When the sun shines on this area it almost glows orange, lighting up a normally darker area of the garden.
The star of the show in the Woodland Forest Garden was a red fuschia that I picked up at an Easter Market earlier this year. It is clearly very happy with its new home and providing a beautiful burst of red amongst all of the green. Sadly it wasn’t named, but that really doesn’t matter, as it reminds me of the wonderful morning out with our family. Another little gem that I love is a tiny geranium given to me by my friend Shirley. Shirley is always handing out cuttings to those she knows, she is such a kind hearted soul.
The passionfruit vine, located on the edge of the garden has been in place for 2 or 3 years now, remaining small and fruitless. Under threat of becoming compost, it has taken off. I was so excited to see buds form, and watched with great anticipation as the buds turned into flowers, and finally fruit. Admittedly I did throw a bag of sheep manure around the base of the plant after reading that they are heavy feeders! I chose to plant a non-grafted Nellie Kelly black passionfruit which should produce up to 100 fruit over Summer and Autumn. I’ve just read that it only has a 3 year lifespan, so I think I should look at planting another alongside next year. I have avoided the grafted passionfruit as they are notorious for sending up unwanted growth from the rootstock used, and it is such a pain to get rid of!
The woodland garden, while new, is providing splashes of colour. On the edge, the clivia were in bloom, though not as stunning as in previous years, when the sun hit them they glowed! While the Spring Starflower (Ipheion uniflorum) bulbs have clearly found their place, filling in a gap, and flowering. Hopefully, in time, they will naturalise and call this little corner their home.
Work continued, and the plan for the woodland garden began to come together. Logs and branches were used to create the outline of the beds, creating distinct walkways throughout. Plants gradually made their way into the ground, including arisarum vulare (friar’s cowl) from my late mother’s garden planted around the based of a birdbath, an elkhorn fern gifted to me by my friend Ann, mounted on a log that had had a wire basket nailed to the top and planted with the ever hardy spider plant and the elkhorns that were already flourishing in the Chinese Elm gifted to me by another beautiful friend, Beth, gave the area a kind of established feel. The agapanthus were already in place, and I had to free two massive clumps of aspidistra (originally from my late grandmothers home) from the pots that they have lived in for years, so that they could be planted out, both into the garden and into two new pots ready to be placed inside our front entrance. Still a great deal more work to be done, but it is coming together and giving me a great deal of pleasure in its creation.