Keen 1

Latest posts by Keen 1


Posted: 06/07/2013 at 13:32

Hi Verdun. Glad the "Slug Hunt" works for you - I always got good results and apart from that a look at what else is going on by torchlight is often an eyeopener. Ref that Salvia it is I feel sure Salvia sclarea and I have had them in the garden for ages, biennial I think but self sows and that is how I have kept it going though always leaving it to its own devises. Most handsome plant but does "pong" a bit strongly if bruised or even brushed against. Well a little jest comparison could be -  so do Pigs at times but I love a bacon sandwich. I will certainly look into  grass thing, sounds good. I have often read of many of them and as i said do grow a few. IThink I am correct in identifying one that was growing on the "spare plot" when we came here - think its called Carex pendula - largish - 3ft tall and broadly round, very nice pendulous grass sprays going outwards and round. _ you perhaps will identify it for me or put me right - could send a pic if necessary. Have a good w/e if I dont see you again meantime.


Posted: 06/07/2013 at 12:54

Hi Salino. I may have in the past but if I did it has now passed out of my memory. That Rose is as it looks with that deep maroon over light pink in an all over but circular pattern. That name is not vital and thanks for your time.


Took this pic yesterday - don't know how it will arriive.


Posted: 06/07/2013 at 12:34

Hi Salino. Ref the "Picotee "(?) Rose you looked up for me on description but no photo. Heres some pics - not good but look at them as they are, the dark areas are darker red - the lighter are a light


pink  with this mixture all over. Perhaps you can name it for me now with a photo to look at. Many thanks. 

Mystery Plant

Posted: 06/07/2013 at 12:14

Hi Just a thought.Cannot see it well but could it be a Salvia sclarea


Posted: 06/07/2013 at 11:48

Hi Salino. Just found its lable - the pink Hemerocallis is called "Luxury Lace" I just cannot find those plant lists I mentioned . Firm favourites with me are the true Geraniums and three of my favourites are flowering now Thats psilostemon with the black eyed magenta flowers, a nice tall semi dbl blue(?)  called I think grandiflorum violaceum plenum ( will have to check) and a smaller version of this - still going away like goodho is.sanguineum -  renardii and sylvaticum are done as is pheum (sp) - have trimmed back so may get a repeat. Another plant just finished is a nice oldie -  Asphodeline lutea with its yellow star flowers produced at random on its stems. It will ( for me) now look shabby for a while with its foliage dying away  but this will be replaced by/in Autumn ready for next year. Do you grow the Liatris?  - I like its habit of flowering from the top of the stem down rather than from the bottom up -  Astrantias now flowering and looking good as always - this one I have is major but I did at one time have rubra with reddish flrs. Its all happening but the problem here for sure is keeping it going due to this dreadful dryness. Hav ean unusual herbaceous Salvia to tell you about later, it is too just beginning to flower, this is  a biggy - can be 4-5 ft tall.


Posted: 06/07/2013 at 10:53

Hi B-L. Ref those slugs and snails again. I totally forgot to mention this yesterday - its something I read of in a book years ago, have practised it with good results.  It means sacrificing a little sleep but well worth it. The idea is to go into the garden in the early hours with a good torch ( and bucket) and have a thorough look at your vulnerable plants. At this time of year with it staying lighter later and dayligh treturning earlier I suppose sort of one'ish. Any evening I guess since they are big eaters but probably a dampish one would give best results. I have caught a lot of villians this way - another thing is that they cannot do a bunk when they see/hear you. Look under the leaves and into the base as I believe they can just drop off and down. Just a thought and hope you do  not mind. Happy hunting and when caught take them for a really good long walk into the fields where they will provide a snack for other creatures.


Posted: 06/07/2013 at 10:41

Hi Salino. As I have just said to Verdun this garden here is only approx one third in cultivation for reasons stated plus my age etc  - whilst still a pretty (not literally) nimble lad I am not as sprightly as I was. Ref the hard landscaping again see my comments to Verdun last. I have always tried to grow as wide and varied a range of plants as poss and acordinlgly just a few of each can be grown, as with the Daylilies. I have just a few - the bog standard one which I love with the red/orange flrs - a semi double form of this called Kwanso Flore Pleno, Thunbergii a yellow and a so called "pink" one bought this season and yet to flower when we will see just how pink it is, according to its lable should be nice though probably with that orange tint still there - something different anyway. Will find the name for you - its Pink ....?.I have a bit of a prob remembering names on new stuff being bought still, the older ones are indelibly printed on my  "bit of grey"( well mostly anyway). 


Posted: 06/07/2013 at 10:29

Hi Verdun. Firstly again I say it is really nice to natter to you and thank you - you grow a much wider range of plants than I do  and I am sure are far more knowledgeable than myself. May I clear up this "hard landscaping" and "preferring grass" thing. My first garden was twice as big as the second and this one. In this first I also loved  grass as preferred to paving etc of which there there was none , only necessarfy paths.. I had some good meadow grass on that site and made the most of it leaving all the natural undulations in and cutting beds with shrubs across it in two places to create corners and to avoid seeing it all at one look. Mowing - a chore to so many always was/is to me a matter of simply taking the mower for a walk and having a good look at things on the way round. Altogether there I had approx 500 plant "names" on my lists of all types but this total also included varieties etc etc so, never got round to counting the Species (?) etc.   Second garden apart from a small patch of grass for sitting out at the back and a small paved area immediately outside was all cultivated with plants, that included the whole of the front garden. Problem again there was it was like this one, in the dryest parts of Country - over the years ( 28) it got drier and drier there and eventually I had to shingle the front - also I was getting older and still working full time. This one is in an even drier area and there is as I have said also problems - firstly the Moles and believe me in all this area  and for a long ways around they are really very very numerous, this garden here was riddled with them and hills when we arrived - I have told you I sheeted and shingled all the front to get it under control and also that portion of the back garden over to the woods which also got more than its share of attention from them. I prefer by far to see a nice neat stony(not paved) area with some containers etc than a shambles looking like a battlefield recently been shelled. I have approx one third of the garden used for plants and a small area of grass but here again is another problem with this - all around here is pretty well hopeles for growing grass ( nicely as for garden) due to the ravages of a Cockchafer Beetle of some sort eating all the roots. Lady next door because she loved her grass  had all the soil taken out and renewed but in no time it was back to normal,  now paved.  I like a bit of variety of surfaces/textures etc but I cannot stand seeing this blocking over a whole garden with the inevitable umpteen cars etc standing on it -. nuff said .Better end here but my true style of gardening is on the cottage garden style with as many plants packed in as poss. Thanks again and good to natter to you. Regards.


Posted: 05/07/2013 at 18:23

Hi Verdun. Ref those mottled Willows. Sure you are correct here in that your ones are shown at their best with most suitable and appropriate companions to complement and set them off.. to each their own as always but these not for me though. Your garden is as you like it with what you like in it and this I totally go along with. Enjoy.


Posted: 05/07/2013 at 18:12

Hi all. I am going to call this " A trip into the (gardening) past - a plant medley". With the thoughts,comments and sugestions in this post it will hopefully be interesting but depending on your attitude it will either give you much to think ( and hopefuilly talk) about or indigestion.  Either way yer 'tis.  We are all so very interested in our garden and plants as we buy today from the Garden Centres etc but how many have a thought about their Histories? - where did they come from, when, who found them, their naming, all the many myths and fables which over the years have accumulated round them?.. So off we go and here may I ask who has ever read about the "Doctrine of Signatures"?  - this was where all the early medics devised a system whereby they believed that a plant by its appearance showed exactly what illnesses it could cure - a good example being the Lungwort (Pulmonaria) with its green spotted white leaves signifying a lung disorder and so on - can be read about on Wikipedia whatever. Next on the list has anybody obtained a copy of the very comprehensive "Gerards Herbal" in which so many of these early plant introductions and all about them is written ( in old English). To come up to date some  more of this same can be read of - did mention a book by Alice Coats called Flowers and their Histories. I do believe that all this is well worth while i n that it tells of the plants you are buyings histories, so much and many good talking points obtained thereby. Lastly and just to digress a little may I say that amongst my many interests I also have a great love of Pottery and Porcelain, particularly the 19th cent and earliert/later blue and white transfer printed items and the earlier/later hand painted floral items - the early and later Worcester, Derby, Coalport, Spode, Davenport etc etc. Do pse have a look and sure you will agree some really lovely things there. Nuff said except to give an example of the myths of these plants and here consider the Mandrake ( Mandragora) plant - believed to have magical qualities and therefore not to be pulled out of the ground by a human. What they did was loosen it in the ground, tie a rope from it to a dog and let that pull it out of the ground for them. Cranky? - well maybe but most interesting reading  non the less. Do not pse blame me for any indigestion you may have after all that little lot. Will leave it with you - enjoy. 

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