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Gosh, it’s been windy this week. It’s been throwing down with rain for most of the time, here in Manchester – two storms Ali and Bronagh in quick succession, so my north facing, shady garden is a squelchy mess but the two water-butts are overflowing. The weather cleared on Saturday morning so I ran out to take some photos for my ‘Six on Saturday’ joining up with the Propagator and all the other gardening bloggers around the world. It’s a simple idea to photograph some of the ‘action’ around your garden and its surroundings. The weather’s been warm despite the rain so my petunias are still looking good.
1.Salvia and our new Arbour
I’ve got a couple of other salvias in pots around the gardens. They’re good for Autumn colour and seem easy to grow. I like them as they come in many shades of pink, red, purple and different sizes too. Hopefully, they’ll survive the winter OK.
This beauty is by the new arbour at the bottom of the garden on the decking. We are hoping to paint the arbour before the winter, but it’s under some trees so should be ok until next year. I wrote about it in my first ‘six on Saturday a couple of weeks ago. I’ll try to take a proper photo next week of the whole decking area. It’s looking ok but the fences need painting too.
2. Hydrangea Panticulata – Limelight
This gorgeous hydrangea lives in our front garden right by the path, protected from the winds by a large rosemary bush (tree?) which needs regular hacking to keep it from overwhelming all the plants. I keep the rosemary as My Chap cooks with rosemary regularly. The hydrangea is growing above one of the 15+ lavender plants I have in the front garden – probably my favourite flower and scent. They love the dry, rubbly soil. Our 1990s house is built on an old Victorian bandage factory which started life as a huge 6 story cotton mill, right by the Bridgewater Canal.
I’ve written about #lavender many times on this blog – and lavender played a big part in our wedding last year. I’ve also written about the #Bridgewater Canal – we walk along it often and it’s one of My Chap’s favourite running routes. I’ve got a couple of other #Hydrangeas dotted around the garden.
I loved fuchsias when I was a girl – I thought they looked like ballerinas. They are my mum’s favourite flowers, so I grew up with them all around our garden. She has many in pots still.
Here’s two hardy ones – Magellania – which is about four foot high, has flowered profusely all summer. I’ve had it for about five years and this is the first good show from it. I bought it as a very sorry looking spindly plant in Morrisons of all places.
‘Lady in Black’ is an unusual fuchsia – it’s a hardy, climber – My Mum gave it to me and it’s about three years old now – and about two foot high. I need to start training it on a trellis and a much bigger pot.
4. Cotoneaster Horizontalis – before shot
Sometimes this cotoneaster changes colour to dark red leaves before dropping off, and some years it doesn’t – so we’ll just have to wait and see what happens. The birds love the berries one way or another. This was one of the few plants in the garden when I arrived nearly nine years ago.
5. Potentilla – Abbotswood
This is the second time the potentilla outside the patio door has flowered. The bush wasn’t happy earlier in the summer (June/July) as I think it was far too hot for many flowers…. so it stopped and started flowering again at the beginning of September – and is pushing out flowers. It’s normally finished by now. This potentilla was another of the plants in the garden when I bought the house – there were about six shrubs and one very sorry tulip appeared the following year. I like the contrast of the green, white and the red leaves of the dwarf Acer.
6. Virginia creeper on my neighbour’s wall – Before, during….and what’s next
This Virginia creeper spreads all along the boundary wall of my neighbour’s garden on the way out of our little cul de sac. I watch it change colour every year – it lifts my mood. Here’s the photo from today (22 September). I’ll report back with more photos. I’m absolutely rubbish with Latin names so I had to look this one up. You see very mature Virginia creepers on many of the Victorian Buildings around Manchester – stunning but I’m not sure the impact on the brickwork.
I’ve written before about how gardening and plants help me focus my attention on daily changes, noting cycles and re-appearances – mindfulness in action.
I’m joining up with the Propagator – this week he has a stunning dahlia, some old favourites and some new plants in need of TLC. Like him, we buy plants from the ‘sick plant shelf’ at our local garden centre – usually, they’ve just finished flowering and need some love to come back next year. Have a look at his contribution here– He’s written about the cycle of plants/life too. He’s taking one of his crew to start uni – I hope they have a brilliant time. As someone who’s worked for many years in the Uni sector this resonates with me – each new cohort of students – different, individual, but some of the same worries and excitements as the ones who’ve gone before – all that youthful enthusiasm. It is truly a privilege to work among them in the highest concentration of students in the whole of Europe – Oxford Road, Manchester.
I hope the Autumn treats you well…. and for my readers in the Southern Hemisphere… Spring 🙂 new opportunities – whey 🙂
What do you love about the change in the seasons? Favourite plants? Or for you is September new term, new school/uni year? Let me know in the comments.
Love Bec xxx