The End of Day Walk

A walk around the garden, with camera in hand, is an excellent way to see and appreciate the plants which grow there. Oftentimes we can be so busy that we don’t take time to relax and simply enjoy what is growing well or in flower on any particular day. This is something I do at lunchtime if I have done a hard morning’s work or last thing in the evening as an opportunity to bring the gardening day to an end. It also often comes as a sort of catch-up activity for something may have caught my eye during the day and I may not have had the opportunity to stop and look at it more carefully – while riding on a lawnmower, for example. Yesterday, it was the first flowering of an iris I had received from a friend. I don’t recall its name so it goes by his name for the present until I talk to him again.

Oxalis valdiviensis with Galactites tomentosa, Cyclamen purparascens Balbianello
Of course, there are distractions along the way and before I could get to that iris my eye was caught by this little combination of flowers growing on steps leading down to the front lawn. What struck me was how we have plant from all a round the world in our gardens and how fortunate we are to have them. Here is Oxalis valdiviensis (yellow flowers) from Chile with Galactites tomentosa, a thistle from Spain, and  Cyclamen purparascens which came from Lake Como in Italy. A little international gathering. 
Polygonatum hookeri with Hosta 'Dawn'
This is a close-up shot of very small plants. The lilac flower is from a miniature (less than 5cm) species of Solomon’s Seal, Polygonatum hookeri, and I love the fact that I planted it with this miniature hosta, Hosta ‘Dawn’ – purely a happy accident of planting rather than any design on my part but I am so happy for such accidents. 
Geranium phaeum (1)
Geranium phaeum has the peculiar common name of “mourning widow”, “black widow” or “dusky cranesbill” which give it a hint of something sinister but I think it is a very dainty flower and it holds itself in a very elegant manner. 
Geranium phaeum (3)
Seedlings of Geranium phaeum can give rise to various colours and this more lightly coloured one has done very well here.
Geranium phaeum 'Album' (2)
And a white-flowered cultivar is certainly less sinister and makes a very attractive garden plant. 
Aesculus x mutabilis 'Induta' (2)
We have a very large specimen of Horse Chestnut in the garden which must certainly be approaching a century in age and also several horse chestnut trees which we planted ourselves but this miniature is one which I like very much. It is Aesculus mutabilis ‘Induta’. The photograph shows its size after twenty years, still a small, tidy and very ornamental plant. 
Aesculus mutabilis 'Induta' (1)
The attractively-coloured flowers of Aesculus mutabilis ‘Induta’ 
Brugmansia
This Brugmannsia has just begun to flower in the glasshouse – a kind gift from a friend. Plants are such good reminders of people and of their kindness. 
Sparmannia africana
Sparmannia africana, again in the glasshouse, and, again, another kind gift from a friend. It makes a large shrub in the glasshouse and will soon have to be pruned to continue to allow it to fit there. 
Podophyllum 'Spotty Dotty' in flower
This might not be immediately recognisable for the plant is more appreciated for its attractive foliage and the flower is hidden underneath the large leaves. This is the flower of Podophyllum versipelle ‘Spotty Dotty’ and it is a wonderfully rich red. 
Geranium nodosum from The Bay Garden (2)
Geranium nodosum would very often be dismissed as a weedy plant for it has the ability to spread itself about very generously. However, this form has a darker flower than the normal species and I like it very much and I have it in a position where I am happy to leave it spread all it wishes. 
Papaver orientalis 'Beauty of Livermere' (1)
Now, you couldn’t fail to see this one. That red simply screams at you. This is Papaver orientalis ‘Beauty of Livermere’, a perennial poppy. Here it is planted against a shrub, Physocarpus opulifolius ‘Lady in Red’ which tones down the vibrant colour a little. 
Iris pallida 'Phylis Moore' (1)
This is an iris which may have lost its name. I received it as Iris pallida ‘Phylis Moore’. It was given a cultivar name because it was considered different from the species – the six petals all falling rather than having three falls and three upright. Recent research seems to indicate that it should not have been given a cultivar name at all – but what will I do? Yes, I should discard the ‘Phylis Moore’ but names stick in one’s mind and it is hard to let go. 
Iris from Mark Roper
Finally – for I can’t show you every flower I photographed – I have arrived at the iris which caught my eye while on the lawnmower, the gift from my friend and I will have to ask him to remind me of its name when I meet him during this coming week. It certainly is an attractive one and a delight to have in the garden. 

16 thoughts on “The End of Day Walk

  1. A day seldom passes when I don’t do the same thing, Paddy, although I am looking for wildflowers. Your photographs are wonderful and capture the love you have for the beauty in your garden.

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  2. Thank you for sharing these lovely images taken from your garden … do you ever open it to visitors as per U.K. Yellow Book scheme? We currently have a phaeum thriving in an empty moss covered pot … one of my favourites but I do have to share it with friends. Our garden is small and I have to manage philanderers …

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    1. Hi Angela, No, we don’t open to the public. We open for local clubs of which we are members but not otherwise.

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  3. What a wonderful and eclectic selection. Always wanted to use that word. You are both amazingly talented gardeners.thank you both for sharing so much with us. “And still they gazed and still the wonder……”

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  4. Thank you, you have inspired me to photograph my garden regularly. I also will give Geranium phaeum a little more respect, thanks to you. So enjoy your strolls through your garden.

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    1. I love photographing our garden and the plants in it and it is great to look back at photographs from a few years previous and see the changes.

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  5. I do the same Paddy, but early morning about 5 am with just the birds for company! Love your little chestnut, we had 6 of the huge variety but only 4 now as 2 have fallen over, they must have been at least 2 or 3 hundred years old, their trunks were so huge. I could cope with a chestnut the size of yours, must make a note of it, thanks.

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  6. I think many of us share a similar joy in those moments when we have paused from the tasks of the day, and can enjoy what we have done, or what the plants have accomplished on their own when our attention was elsewhere. You have some lovely, and lovingly-tended plants, it surely must be a pleasure to wander among them. Your iris reminds me very much of iris fulva, which has a similar form and coppery-red color.

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    1. Iris fulva it is, to the best of my memory. Many thanks. Yes, like you, I really enjoy a little walk around the garden especially after a day’s work – a rest from work and a moment to appreciate.

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