close up, personal and reasons why

July 6, 2010

Just cut the alchemilla and brought it into the house. It’s sitting in a green glass jug below a print by Gillian Ayres and looks great. After a private conflab with W., we hope we can cut enough to figure in next weekend’s decorations for a big event.

Cloe gave me this agave for Christmas 2008 – a difficult time as someone was passing away – and I was charmed with it.  The plant is totally self contained, requires little attention but is always interesting nonetheless. I’m fond of it for all these reasons.

Something so transitory, unexpected and beautiful has seeded itself in an ugly concrete tread on the back steps.

The ‘Giant Bronze’ fennel has already figured in the blog  – way out of scale for a small courtyard but that’s the point! The filigree texture is quite perfect – it’s fun to look deep down into the network of foliage.  Tastes good too! The osteospermums just nestle at the base of this monster and look brilliant in contrast and sort of cosy. The flower reminds me of a freshly painted surface – smart and  accommodating – the plants just get on with it and flower almost continuously. 

The tabulate aeonium seems to cause comment. Friends came to supper recently and we were chatting to one about work related things. I was conscious of the other as he walked into the courtyard, saw the plant on the table and said ‘Oh, my, that’s wooonderful’. He’s an actor!

Looking forward to seeing how Dahlia ‘David Howard’  (above) works with the ‘Karma Chocolate’. Both planted in pots (there’s very little available ground for planting here) which is a new way of growing dahlias to me. Both plants are dark, but not gloomy, one is majestic and the other is positive and that’s just the mood now. . . the arrangement of the petals is very pleasing.

Free, unpredictable, wild, uncontrollable could describe this duo of Californian poppy and Stipa tenuissima and that’s why I like them – individually they appear and flourish where and when  they please. Totally promiscuous and even better when nudging up together. This is the top of this site by the old gate. The ground is poor – hardly any top soil here as it used to be a path through – a twitten – but it has been blocked off years ago. So some reclaimed garden in a narrow channel with planting that the neighbour calls  ‘the seaside look’. Well,  it has to be self sustaining and has developed this year into an eco system in its own right. Hurrah! 

And some music here.

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