Sunday, 4 June 2017. How glorious. Summer's here.
11. July 2017. Look at the beautiful white lily gracing the garden.
This is 'New Dawn' taken from a cutting. Once established it blooms all summer.
This is Albizzia Julibbrissin. I first came across it whilst visiting a garden centre in Cornwall. I bought it of course. It looked fantastic in the garden but I had to leave it behind when moving house. This one, a present from my son, has been in my present garden for 10 years. Last summer (2018) it bloomed for the first time. The flowers are spectacular. I've collected plenty of seeds because I will have to leave that one behind as well due to moving house again.
Below the pink flowers and the seed pods, not quite ready then. Seed pods, ready to pick, are shown in my autumn garden
Black Elderberry, Sambucus Nigra - Black Lace. This shrub, almost a tree, grows quite tall but you can cut it back, down to three feet or even a bit shorter in late autumn. It has beautiful flowers in early summer and later on black berries. I love the almost black dissected leaves. It is easy to care for and a joy to look at.
6. August 2017. Lovely hibiscus. The first leaves appear in May. It grows fairly quickly and brings an exotic flair to the garden. Personally, I don't feed the plant. They say that you should, to get lots of blooms. I find that I get them anyway. You could collect the seeds and grow them on. I have a couple of plants that seeded themselves, not necessarily the colours that I want. They come from my neighbours garden and they are a mauve. Unfortunately, my double blue and double white, or any of the above hibiscus plants, haven't seeded themselves.
You can take cuttings from your plants and get new ones. Hydrangeas are really easy as well as roses. Cut 10" of the stem and leave one leaf, stick it in the ground, keep watered. Be patient. By next year you'll have a new plant. Do take several stems it will increase your chances. You can also increase your plants by layering. Take a small branch near the ground dig it in and secure it with a stone. Leave it there. It will grow roots and you have a new plant. Most biennial plants seed themselves like Aquilegia, Forget me nots, Foxgloves, Nigella, Eryngium (ornamental thistle), Verbena bonariensis or Hollyhock.
Just collect their seeds or leave them and thin them out where you don't want them.
You can also collect rose hips, open them up and cover them lightly with soil. I actually got some results. I got the hips from a park in London. I won't tell you where I got them because I'm not sure if you're allowed to do that. Anyway I won't do it again because I collected some insects as well. They seemed quite happy living in my handbag.
Helleborus, the Christmas rose is easy to grow from seed as well. Once you have the plant it will seed itself. A few years ago I bought a lot of Peony seeds on the Internet. They didn't come up. But I took some seeds of the 'Pink Silk Tree' Albizzia julibrissin' whilst in Spain and that was a success. Got a tree to show for it. Good luck with your efforts.
That's the little rose from my 'London park' seedling. The flower is still quite small only about an inch and half. This picture was taken in June 2015. It wasn't much bigger in 2016. It might develop yet. It's my little pet and I'm watching it all the time. I put the seeds (hips) down in 2013. The other seedlings, about 12 of them initially, didn't all survive only about four but they haven't bloomed yet. That's what gardening is about. Patience.
Although Michael Caine had full grown trees planted in his garden. Maybe patience isn't always a virtue.
End of May 2017 my little pet has lost its bud. I'm so upset. Maybe a bird did it.