Wednesday, 3 June 2020

Lupins, Lilies and Lists




I'm totally amazed at how prolific this Lupin is this year.  

It's now three years old and has been in this pot since last year, lying dormant under the soil I'm guessing since I had completely forgotten it was even in there.

It's competing for space with a three year old Lily that I bought as a yellow sticker bargain from Tesco, as well as with about four other plants which are somewhere under all that mass of foliage.  Maybe the Lupin and the Lily are actually liking being as squished as they are in this pot because this is their best display yet.

They are being looked after though and manage to get through a full watering can full of water every  day and I will have to think about feeding them soon, as there can't be much goodness left in the original compost with so many plants and so much watering.

I've started an Alexa 'My Favourite Flowers' list so that when I am starting again after I move I can plant up my new garden with all my favourite plants right from the very beginning.

At the moment the list includes Lupins, Foxgloves, Lavender, Daisies, Primroses and Hollyhocks and it will keep growing as I keep coming across things I love.

What are your favourite flowers growing in your garden, or that you buy when you see them?


Sue xx



37 comments:

  1. David Austin Roses for starters! I have amassed about 20 here down the years and they are absolutely STUNNING, especially my Paul's Himalayan Musk rambler, which stretches from one side of the garden to the other. I have about a dozen different Clematis too, and they add colour and height throughout the year.

    I love Cottage Garden plants, and that's what I have always grown. I always have masses of Aquilegia and wouldn't be without them in any garden. I would love Hollyhocks, though they don't do well in Wales, as they tend to get rust (just as the Fruit trees get Canker). Lupins are lovely - have a big one which I got from a car boot sale and it is 3 different plants/colours all in a huge plant this year. I have wild Foxgloves - they thrive, as does Purple Loosestrife - but sadly the more delicate non-pink Foxgloves don't seem to hack it through the wet winters here. Big blowsy Poppies are a must, and Scabious, and annuals like Love-in-a-Mist and Calendula. Masses of Geraniums (especially Weeping Widow) and a nice Apple-scented leaf Geranium. As I have cats, I don't grow Lilies as their pollen can kill cats.

    The garden has been both a sanctuary and a joy to work in this year, but I do miss a slow wander round my favourite garden centre . . .

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    1. I really don't like growing roses, but do like a vase of cut roses occasionally, but all the other flowers you mention I love. Yes it's cottage garden plants for me all the way. I even specified simple country flowers at my funeral, just daisies if possible ... and anyone who sends or brings Lilies is to be sent home.

      Oh to have a slow wander round a garden centre ... yes they are open now but seemingly at our nearest one you have to walk round in single file 2 metres apart and cannot browse or pick up anything that you will not be buying. It's supposed to be relaxing not regimented, so I'm just not going.

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    2. We too have Paul's Himalayan Musk rambler which is over arches up our path. We planted it thirteen years ago when we moved in and now it is spectacular and always peeks for my birthday. I have never seen it mentioned on blogs before so just had to comment. We also love all cottage garden plants.

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    3. I've never even heard of it before, I'll have to look out for it 😃

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  2. I've never been a flower gardener. I prefer plants that I can eat - but with age comes knowledge, and I have found out many flowering plants are edible or even delicious! I don't usually buy plants, I try to grow them myself from seeds or barter with someone to get what I need. Once a year I buy two small roses to plant on the grave - I do like roses, and those small pot plants also smell nice (not that I get to smell them so often, nowadays I rarely visit graveyard). Mostly I buy herbs, I'll never be able to walk past new to me herb. Most of them will not survive my hard and cold soil of clay, and rest usually die during winter, but I'm not easily defeated!
    Few years I have been trying to help pollinators, so I have sown flowers - and stopped nagging about unmowed lawn ;-) dandelions and clovers are treat to bugs. Last week I bought lavender! I don't even like lavender - but bees love it (or so I have been told).

    But on the other hand I'm battling invasive plants, giant hogweed, lupins (I think it is different from what you have in your pot), Impatiens glandulifera (Himalayan balsam) and rosa rugosa (japanese rose). I'm winning the war with giant hogweed, and I think I'm on control with lupin situation in my and in my neighbours yard/field, but japanise rose... It's a pretty flower and it smells wonderful, but I really need to start fight against it soon.

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    1. I too would glass myself as a veggie grower first and foremost, it's only in the last couple of years with our bee population in decline that I have made the effort to have more flowering plants. And of course I do need some flowering things in the tunnels to bring in the pollinators for my tomatoes and blueberry bushes and as companion planting to deter bugs. Of course having previously had a Lavender shop I LOVE lavender of every description and it's always planted everywhere, oh and I cannot leave a garden centre without buying a new Rosemary :-)

      Please be very careful with the giant hogweed, Alan is severely allergic to the sap from them and a few other plants and has to be covered head to foot in thick clothing if he is chopping anything similar down. The welts and lesions on his face arms and hands the first time he chopped one down without realising were horrendous and took weeks of cream applications to heal.

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    2. I'm (luckily?) aware of giant hogweed's sap - one villager got those horrendous blisters and scars from it several years ago so I knew in the beginning I have to be careful. But it is somehow unbelievable how bad it could be!

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  3. I've never been able to grow Lupins in my garden here, they just disappear!! I would have never thought about putting them in a pot, but I will definitely try Lupins in pots next year. Lupins are my very favourite and I love all the cottage garden plants (I think our lists would be very similar). What a nice thought to have to make sure you plant all your favourites in your new garden. Gardens are certainly a joy to have in these strange times and although mine is only small, I still have my chickens, pond, greenhouse and tiny veg patch and I feel lucky to have it.

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    1. I'm really looking forward to gardening in a smaller garden, I think as growers we can adapt to any space we are given. Yes, do try Lupins in a pot, these are the best I have ever had like you I have had a few completely vanish in the ground!!

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  4. I love my agapanthus and peonies, lilies are my favourite but I have a cat so can't have them.

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    1. The Lilies will be snipped if they flower just to be on the safe side, although Ginger shows no interest in the pots at all.

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  5. Favourite flowers? Well usually what just happens to be out at the moment but certainly all the ones on your list would be on my list. I have just seen a photograph on Sue in Suffolk's blog of a jug of simple cornflowers and it reminded me just how much I love them. I shall buy a packet of seed and scatter them in my garden - if they like you then you will have them for life as they seed easily. Oh and you can add any of the Hellebore to my list.

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    1. Yes I do like Hellebores, we planted one in Nut Wood that I had completely forgotten about until I saw it yesterday bravely raising its head above the wild flowers. I may have to try transplanting it to come with us,. it's just lost over there.

      I hope you have some of the rain we have today to reach those plants you can't get to, to water.

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  6. I like things that just appear and don't need much looking after - I'm a lazy flower gardener!

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    1. Oh gosh yes, me too. I didn't even remember the Lupins were in that pot, or the Lilies for that matter, it's completely planted up at ground level with little early Spring plants that we bought to make the front door area look nice on the estate agents photos and then all this came up.

      Things that come up year after year or self seed are just brilliant for us lazy flower gardeners. There's enough work in growing the food without having to grow the pretties as well !!

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  7. I have a few lupins, reminds me of growing up in a garden of many lupins. Not much else among the weeds, just lupins. Fuchsia's are my favourite.

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    1. I don't like Fuchsias much but where Mum lives there is a magnificent huge bush of a Fuchsia that seems to flower for around 8 or 9 months of the year, I can see the beauty of that in a garden. Never malign the weeds, they are just wild flowers by a different name ... and much needed by the bees. We are a mass of Buttercups this year, the grass is full of them, but not many Dandelions which is very strange.

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  8. I'm rubbish at gardening but I love roses and all the cottage garden plants. I've never had a lot of time to do gardening over and above keeping the grass mowed and the garden tidy. I am getting more into plants though and have recently planted some new ones (fingers crossed). I always really love seeing everyone else's beautiful gardens and envy you your green fingers Sue.

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    1. At least I won't be watering today as it's raining now!

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    2. I was worrying about my green fingers this year they seemed to be failing me, but everything that can look after itself is doing really well and the vegetables are just starting to pick up ... phew!!

      Yes it seems we are all leaning towards cottage garden plants and flowers, maybe it's an age thing or are we just all country girls at heart?

      Yes raining here too, and much harder than the forecast suggested ... which is a huge relief. No carrying buckets of water over for the sheep now that the grass is lovely and wet.

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    3. I've always loved them and the colourful chaos of them!

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  9. i also love foxgloves but pansies are my favourite x

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    1. Yes Pansies are lovely aren't they, you just have to love a flower that has it's own little face :-)

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  10. My favorites are roses, lavender and california poppies. Those lupins are beautiful! I might just consider them next year.

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    1. California Poppies are beautiful aren't they. Oh yes, you must invest in some Lupins, so much show for so little effort :-)

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  11. I've just added Cornflowers to my list after seeing them on Sues blog. Marigolds, California poppies, Welsh Poppies, Lavender, Wallflowers, Snow on the Mountain, Aubritia, Londond Pride, Blue Moon Rose, (reminds me of my Dad), White Iceburg climbing Rose and David Austin, Jude the Obscure as soft yellow colour and Herbs. I particularly like scented flowers/ herbs and I am also a lazy gardener and love ground cover as it means less weeding. Anything that comes up year after year is good for me. I have a notebook which I am making a note of what I want to grow in the next garden. Your Lupins are brilliant by the way. Helen S.

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    1. Although I love Marigolds for their companion planting benefits I absolutely hate the smell of them, so they have not made my list. After seeing Sue's beautiful Cornflowers this morning I was tempted to add them ... I might yet.

      Oh I love scented herbs Rosemary and Lemon Balm being my favourites, with Sage, Chives and Thyme closely on their tails. Wherever I end up there will be a herb garden of some description.

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  12. Sweet peas are my favourite, for the beautiful pastel colours and amazing scent. Second must be cornflowers for the gorgeous blue.

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    1. Sweet peas are pretty aren't they, my Mum lives the scent of them.

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  13. Alstroemeria/Peruvian lily because the cut flowers last do long. Lupins, Cape daisies, fuchsia, so many really!!

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    1. Cape daises,yes they are lovely and perhaps should go on my list too 😃

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  14. Replies
    1. I've never had such a spectacular show before. It must love being in a pot, and the hot dry weather we've been having ♥️

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  15. Don't lupins give you value for your money, ours always give a gorgeous show.

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    1. Definitely, this started off as such a little thing a couple of years ago. I feel guilty for crowding it in this pot now 😬

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  16. I definitely do not have a green thumb but I have had good luck growing Salvias. The red ones do best for me as long as I water them. Your Lupins are gorgeous!

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    1. I'd forgotten about Salvias, yes I love them too. I have red and blue ones in the front garden bed. I'm adding them to my Alexa list 😄

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