auntie betty

Latest posts by auntie betty

Clematis Montana

Posted: 05/06/2012 at 22:51

Agreed Obelixx. Smaller clem or bigger garden.  I'm currently living in hope that a 40ft run of boring golden leylandii hedge I've got will kark (possibly after some 'accidentally' overzealous clippage on my part) so I can have a rose and clem-covered fence instead. I wonder if bramble killer works on conifers...mwah hah hah

June in Your Garden!

Posted: 05/06/2012 at 22:43

Scrummy stuff, Spikes. Just my cuppa tea. Yummy yum yum.

Planting scheme....

Posted: 05/06/2012 at 22:34

Eee you little shopping devil - you didn't waste any time! Its a lovely book and great for inspiration. Some of the options offered are very traditional associations, but plenty of surprises too. Let us know how you go. And how the Sarah Raven turns out too. Always on the lookout for another good book...

Clematis Montana

Posted: 05/06/2012 at 22:29

Nah, I'll be patient when I'm dead (of course, all my plants probably will be too). Except the bindweed, which will live FOREVER!!! Fortune favours the brave - yahoo!

Clematis Montana

Posted: 05/06/2012 at 22:17

Cowards!  I am a bit of a hackmeister. Personal choice, this one. I'm just too impatient. Maybe the real solution is to take it out altogether and plant a smaller clem in the first place... Montana's lovely, but it is a rampant beast. Wouldn't be my choice in a small garden, especially if I only had room for just the one. xx

Planting scheme....

Posted: 05/06/2012 at 21:34

I can heartily recommend the RHS book on planting combinations. Well worth the price as it saves you buying things that end up not working. You look up a plant and it gives you info on it, plus a selection of suggestions of what works well with it, both for looks and for site/soil preference. Look em up in your encyclopaedia and choose one or two, perhaps based on colour and/or flowering time. Then search the combo book for THOSE plants and see what's suggested... and so on.

The key, I think, is choosing things that contrast with each other, preferably (to me) in foliage colour and texture. I often use plants that I may not even like much (such as bergenia) simply because they show other things off so well because of the contrast. And have decent sized clumps. It also helps in island beds to have one central focal plant to work around. Stops it looking like a cold frame. xx

Clematis Montana

Posted: 05/06/2012 at 21:22

I dunno Daintiness - I'd probably be brutal if it were me, and have it look butchered now but get to where I want to go quicker in the end. Tattianna, these clematis flower now, and then spend the rest of the year growing the new wood on which next spring's flowers will form. So, the ideal time to prune is as soon as this year's flowering is finished (or sooner if you're not bothered about chopping them off since you can't see them anyway). Generally, people cut back in stages as described above in order to avoid the plant looking scalped for a few months and be a bit gentler on the plant, but if you don't mind effectively starting from scratch you can cut back the lot to within a couple of feet of ground level. A mature montana won't flinch. Put in some wires or something on the fence, so you can spread out and tie on the new growth, giving you maximum chance of seeing next spring's blooms. It'll recover really quickly if it's well established - I've known them put on 8/9 feet of growth in a single season. Give its feet a good thick mulch of well-rotted manure and don't let it dry out this summer - this'll keep its feet cool, which clematis love, and the goodness will also seep down and feed it, which it'll need if its got to put on all that growth anew. And Bob's your uncle. If you tie it in nicely you'll probably find it gets to the size you want this year, or next at the latest, and then you can just do the staged pruning to keep it to size and keep it flowering from lower down from then on. That also increases your chances of getting a second flush of flowers in autumn, as you won't have chopped off all those bits every year.

Garden gaffes

Posted: 05/06/2012 at 14:47

Wintersong, get your gorgeous little heuchs somewhere nice and cool and on the moist side of average and you'll be amazed. I was!  I've got a massive clump now, having salvaged some teeny pieces of my original shrivelled and much abused specimen just like you did. It came back really fast once I shifted it. Done so well I just bought 2 more for elsewhere - havent the heart to start chopping my old one! Seems too cruel. Its one of my favourite guys in the garden now. Super special with a whacking clump of dicentra, or euphorbia robbiae if the thought of bright pink and lime together horrifies you. Truth is, I imagine a healthy Rickey looks pretty tops with almost anything that isn't silver. xx

olive tree

Posted: 05/06/2012 at 14:22

You can prune out weak or diseased shoots or branches in spring. Other than that, best to leave it be if you're in a climate where you could expect fruit.

can anyone id this plant for me thanks

Posted: 05/06/2012 at 14:11

tricyrtis? turks-cap lily?


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