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hot-record temp. yesterday and today-90's. clematis warsaw nike very vigorous-already at 3 ft. while others have just leafed-it should be able to compete with the vitis purpurea for a few years. gravetye beauty seems to have disappeared so must come up with a replacement with the humulus aurea. perhaps self sown morning glories-that intense purple might be good for a season. need to go wading in the canal and whack the siberian elms-today will be hot enough. the garden almost all purple and blue-lunaria ,hesperis, muscari, myosotis, brunnera, veronica the last scillas in the shadiest part of the garden. hydrangeas all in leaf-annabelle the most, quercifolia the least-it refuses to be happy although i try and try-oh,lord.
wonderful day today-lawns full of dandelions and the air full of the scent of lilac-magnificent this year. iberis starting-it is everywhere from seed-cornus controversa about to bloom-the caterpillars do love it so. cornus sericea hedgerow gold is possibly the best variegated dogwood(green, gold, pink) or is it just that it is new? two seedling clematis and four seedling peonies will bloom for the first time this year, always exciting although seldom anything worthwhile-one of the ancestors of the peonies is hana dai-jin a single japanese, so, perhaps? ligularia stenophila is back, not really a goer here but it mayl settle in-five kinds of filipendula are all coming at the same rate-highly unusual but isn't every year? arounfd town wonderful tangerine colored tulip.
this justin-seedling miniature iris open-3"tall, less than 2" across. white and pale purple with white falls highly reflexed. something to be said for gardening with fairly severe ADD, you do get a lot of different things going-unless you forget them entirely.
cercis forest pansy badly broken up by winter winds but blooming beautifully- the exact shade of the magnolia loebneri behind it, very good with the early morning sun shining through. saxifrage urbium, london pride, doing poorly while the more difficult flourish, oh well, i shall coddle it a bit and tell people it is a great rarity. gentian acaulis blooming, a friend asked what the color was and i could only think of gentian blue-when a name is a descriptive how does one describe it? a gold leafed lamium,with lysimachia mummularia aurea and tradescantia aurea, if you don't know the tradescantia it is i think the most brazen, in both senses, of all the yellow leaves and quite vigorous despite a complete lack of green in its complexion
came home and found some people sitting on the deck smoking grass, drinking wine and looking at the garden. it surprises me how many of my old friends are still stoners-oh well, it's a peaceful sort of thing.hydrangea paniculata heavily budded. it is spurred every autumn and responds nicely. water plants showing off-reeds, rushes, pontaderia-lilies and polygonum amphibius(probably not it's name any more) are unfurling. the polygonum looks like persicaria bistort-very handsome but is a spreader-i pull about 90% out of the water every autumn. stachys helene von stein enormous-but is she worth it? kniphofia green eyed envy seemed to have disappeared but found it overwhelmed by galium, people seldom write what apest that one is. kniphofia little maid-one of beth chattos-looking good-if i could have only one it might be the poker i would keep. but then what would i do with red nancy?
the dahlia tubers which were captious all spring to the point of despair, mine, not theirs, have gotten down to business, perhaps too much so.
the gardener new to dahlias might very well rejoice at the forest of sprouts-but don't do it. we all know that four canes per plant will give many medium flowers; two will give a few large blooms and one strictly managed and disbudded will produce a giant flower which the wind will snapoff on the day it opens.
just tossing most of the sprouts seems harsh, but on the other hand making more dahlias when the garden hardly has room for the 25 or 30 we already have seems foolish, but oh the joys of propagation. is there a better way to know our plants than by making more?