End of Month View for April

A bit late to join in the meme hosted by Helen at The Patient Gardener, but still a good idea to do an end of the month review.

To start with, have you ever seen a bird looking so guilty?

guilty blackbird

Caught in the act!

This bird has been digging up all our front lawn – well I use the term lawn very loosely – it is mostly moss. Anyway the blackbird and his mate, Mrs Blackbird have been making a right mess hunting for worms and other delicacies.

We had a real mixed bag of weather last month, varying from really warm to snow and hail. The other morning I woke up to a frost – just when I thought it was safe to put out my bedding plants.

Snow in May.

Snow in May – you can still see the yellow sprinkler left out from the hot dry weather earlier.

The warm weather really bought on the garden.  Most of the herbaceous plants are now up  or at least showing some signs of life. There are still a few bare sticks which I don’t think will grow now, but I won’t pull them up just yet – maybe they are like the fuchsia which only starts growing once I have decided that it really didn’t make it.

The main herbaceous border.

The main herbaceous border.

There is still a lot of bare earth which I would like to fill with spring bulbs that won’t mind being covered with foliage once the herbaceous plants grow.

Top border

Top border

To the left of the photo you can see a climbing rose, which according to Monty Don I have been tying in all wrong.  He suggests that we train these roses horizontally allowing the stronger vertical shoots to put on most growth and hence blooms.  I wonder if I am too late to redo it?

The delphiniums and poppies are well up and have now been stalked so they don’t flop everywhere. There is a bare patch of earth in the middle of the border in front of the plum tree where I have sowed  (or is it sown?) Laydbird poppies again.  After a resounding success two years ago, I didn’t have much luck last year, so this may be the last time I try these. They are just through, but very tiny and one part of the seed bed was dug up by some type of animal – I suspect it was our squirrel, still trying to find all those peanuts he hid earlier.

Talking of climbers, which I was a couple of paragraphs ago, what is it with Clematis and Honeysuckle? They have a whole fence to work with and all they want to do is grow at the top of whatever you give them?

Clematis armandii with new growth

Clematis armandii with new growth

Honeysuckle ignoring most of the fence.

Honeysuckle ignoring most of the trellis.

The romantic border in the middle of the herbaceous border is beginning to look a little more dreamy with the arrival of the pink tulips, white wood anemone and blue anemone blanda.

Romantic border:

Romantic border: with tulips Bakeri Lilac Wonder (small) and Shirley and Sherwood Gardens

White Wood Anemones

White Wood Anemones

I have started spreading these little Wood Anemones around the garden. They disappear completely in the winter, but what a lovely show they give in the spring.

The other side of the path a have a single arch of white Dicentra thanks to Angie in Edinburgh.  I am looking forward to seeing this grow.

white Dicentra Spectabilis

white Dicentra spectabilis

While at the front of the borders the Astilbes are doing well.

Beautiful new leaves of

Beautiful new leaves of Astilbe

Moving up to the rockery and patio area:

The rockery in April

The rockery in April

The rockery has been pretty with spring flowers:purple primula denticulata and wanda, yellow primroses and now pink Saxifrage and purple Aubretia.  In the pointy bit between the paths the Erigeron ‘Sea Breeze’ took a real hammering this winter with the cold temperatures. It is a surviver though and is showing good signs of regrowth. I still have gaps though and have planted a few new plants. I am hoping this Ajuga will be as good as the other dark leafed one I have already, and will fill up some gaps.

Ajuga reptans Mint Chip

Ajuga reptans Mint Chip

At the left of the rockery there is still a lot of bare earth where I dug up the Houttuynia.  At the top of this area I have planted some Alliums. The hairy leaves are beautiful – I can’t wait to see the flowers.

Allium leaves

Allium leaves

Further up the Photinia ‘Red Robin’ is looking really good this year.  Last year I wrapped it up to try to protect the new leaves, but then it got a lot of greenfly. This year it was left to its own devices and managed fine with the cold weather.

Photinia 'Red Robin'

Photinia ‘Red Robin’

On the patio I have several pots and tubs. These tulips have been very colourful.


Tulips Tres Chic (white) and Ballerina (red)

I know I said I couldn’t grow anemones, but I have proved myself wrong this year. Most of these corms came up and they are such a beautiful rich colour. I do hope they will spread.

Anemone Bordeaux

Anemone Bordeaux

Finally, look at this wonderful bargain I picked up in a charity shop for £10.00. It was much more robust that I expected.

My new growhouse

My new growhouse

It didn’t take me long to fill it.

inside growhouse

Filled with Sweet Pea seeds, Morning Glory seeds and Geraniums waiting for the frosts to pass

I already have plans for what seeds I can grow next year, but I think I will need another one of these.. . . .


22 thoughts on “End of Month View for April

  1. My honeysuckle is always misbehaving. Although it, too, has plenty of fence to explore and cling to, it prefers to latch onto the poor rose bushes! Ah, but their scent makes me forgive, every time…

    • Oh dear. I forgot to mention that mine has made a run for it along the bottom of the fence and is now trying to climb the trained plum tree! Maybe when (if) it flowers I will forgive it too.

  2. It’s been a real mixed bag with the weather hasn’t it? You have so much colour going on up there Annette and everything is filling out.
    I love those tulips – perfect combo. Glad the Dicentra is doing well for you – it will fill out in no time. The white anemone is lovely and the one you sent me is looking just as sweet, so thank you.
    I will sort out some of the dwarf Geum for you as soon as the flowers go over and let you know.

    • It has been a strange spring, Angie. My Persicaria ‘Red Dragon’ really suffered with the frost we had the other day. I hope it will be OK as it was great last year. Thanks for keeping some of that Geum for me.

  3. Your garden always looks so well tended. Lovely! You have so much colour to enjoy. I particularly like your little anemones. Your Clematis armandii is doing well.

    • Thanks Chloris – I do have time these days to look after it. The wood anemones are lovely flowers – they are always bigger than I remember them. Yes, I am hoping for lots more blooms next year from the Clematis.

  4. Your rockery makes a nice feature, i like the eye shape you have made it. The tulip Tres Chic is new to me, I do like the lily flowered tulips.
    Gardeners can never have enough greenhouse/shed space!

    • Thanks Brian. It is the first time I have tried Tres Chic, but it has been lovely. I would love a proper greenhouse, but have never been prepared to give up any flower space to put one in!

    • Do you mean the pink flowers in the header? They are called Saxifrage. I have lots and can let you have some for your garden if you have a space for them.

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