Like coming back across the fields with Molly the dog late this afternoon, and noticing the light on the snow in the distance, and hints of green appearing in the fields if not yet in the trees. Also, looking down the river Adour this afternoon, which is replenished by the recent rain, and not just a pebble-run as it has been most of the winter, I thought to myself how very lucky I am to live here- I am often prone to thinking this when I contemplate a visit to a city! Not that I don’t really enjoy the hustle and bustle, but it can be too strong a contrast sometimes.
Back in the woods around Tostat, we have some wonderful swathes of snowdrops, they seem really glorious this year, maybe because they made us wait till about 3 weeks ago to put in an appearance.
Back in the garden, continuing the big attack on my congested border by the wall, Andy was hacking away at a long-past-best Phlomis fruticosa, more dratted wisteria adopting guerilla tactics behind it, and some Kerria japonica, which is also getting the order of the boot. I love the yellow pompoms but that is all it does- not enough for me to continue to love it. It has been a neglected spot, and one of those parts of the garden I have been avoiding- not any more. The soil is actually quite good as there is some spring activity which keeps it from being bone-dry, and although technically North-facing and with our boundary wall behind it, it actually gets a lot of sun in the morning catching it coming in from the East and then again in the mid to later afternoon. So, it will be a good place, I think, for plants that don’t need it to be boiling and bone-dry.
So, I am going to thread some grasses through it, beginning with Pennisetum alopecuroides ‘Red Head’ and then moving on to a new-to-me Miscanthus sinensis ‘Adagio’. In some ways, I need more Miscanthus like a hole in the head, but this variety is so gorgeous, golden and upright and not tall, maybe just over a metre, and so I will man up for the seedlings. More about this grass when I get a chance to blog more about ‘Le Jardin Champêtre’ in Caunes-Minervois, which was where I saw it for the first time a couple of weeks back. Yes, I have got it so bad that an order went in pretty much immediately.
Then I have a lovely rose that survived my attempt to over-test its drought tolerance, Rosa ‘Alissar Princess of Phoenicia’, which spent last summer recuperating and is now back on song. And in amongst that will be a new perennial for me, Kalimeris incisa ‘Madiva’. This should have masses of light lilac daisies all summer and should not behave like sprinting Asters, which have almost been eradicated from the garden. I am also going to try out my Abutilon megapotamicum drifting in arches over the heads of these plants, as I think I will be able to persuade it to do that with a bit of judicious plant support here and there.
So we will see. And the last delight? Seedlings coming up of Colutea x media upstairs. It was on ‘last strike or out’ stage after I have lost two previous small plants. But these seedlings look really strong, so maybe they will make it.