Roses are Fed

First of April, very much sign of Spring now, buds are out on most plants, and the apple blossom is just waiting in the wings

With the new planting of roses in the Age Concern garden I decided to try and give them a good start in life by feeding them this year. I do not normally feed plants in the open ground

The fertiliser I am using at present is Maxicrop complete, first time purchase of that, normally I find it too pricey for me, luckily I bought some last weekend during 20% off weekend at the local garden centre

I gave about a gallon diluted to each bush, watered around the roots, supposed to be done about twice a month but may wait and see, cut it to perhaps once a month

I also did same to my recently planted apple trees, and the Opal plum in it’s pot, and the Thorn free blackberry and the figs in pots

The daffodils I planted last year are going well now, as are the wallflowers, and their scent is lovely as they are in a sheltered corner where the scent lingers

Continuing with the patio cleanup, noticed the pear tree was encroaching onto patio, so I have decided to try and train it sort of espalier, never done that before but I think it will look nice once settled

Knocked in two metal posts to tie the pear into, and took the opportunity to tie back a goosberry, currant & rose that live nearby

Pyracantha pruned to pieces

Finally finished off the very severe pruning of the Pyracantha and Buddlia, wanted to get it done before new Spring growth starts in earnest. I will forego the pyracantha flowers and berries this year but it certainly needed doing

I have left some of the larger branches near the path for me to use as steadying handholds when I use the steps

Noticed the warmth has brought on the flowers on the dwarf daffs I bought in a pot from Morrison’s last month, looking good now

Pyracantha at front with bird feeder, buddlia at the back, near the Dalek compost bins

Begonias

Potted up the new begonia corms I have bought over the past few days, making an early start by temporarily potting them up  in unheated conservatory to help break the dormancy

Once growing and the weather has warmed up they will be transplanted into their final growing pots, probably out the front on raised area near my front steps

Here are the types,

Fimbrata – Home bargains £1.50 for 5 corms

Cascade- Morrisons offer 3 for £5, 4 corms

Double – Morrisons offer 3 for £5, 4 corms

Double – Wilkinson’s £5 for 10 corms

Pendula – Wilkinson’s £5 for 10 corms

It became very obvious as I potted them that “you get what you pay for”

Here are two corms, the smaller one is Home Bargains @30p per corm, larger is Wilkinson’s @ 50p per corm. I think I can guess even now which will be the better blooming plants later in the year

begonia-corms-feb-2017

Free corms – sort of

Over time have collected points from shopping at Morrison’s and last week I reached the magic total to get a five pound voucher off my next shopping trip

Today was the day to use my voucher, Morrison’s have bulbs / corms and the like on offer, three packs for a fiver, normal is two quid a pack

I spotted one of my all time favourites in there, stargazer lilies, 6 in a pack, so grabbed them, plus a pack each of double begonias and trailing begonias. The begonias are mixed colours,  with four in a packet

Not sure yet where I will plant them, possibly in pots out the front, but a bit early to worry about that just now as the North wind blows so cold today

I did grow Stargazer before, had a lovely show for years, but lily beetles did for them in the end I think, despite my best efforts, they just gradually died away over the years, so here’s hoping new strain and new location will succeed

Here is a picture of my old ones past glory, in 2014

 

Daffodils

Prompted by having just bought a pot of “mini daffodils” in Morrison’s this morning, reduced to 50p, variety not stated but I guess Tete a Tete , I thought I would write a few words about the daffodils I have planted for this coming season.

Like most of us I have always had daffs in the garden, normally unknown or mixed varieties that have been acquired over the years, they pop up spring after spring

However on a visit to RHS Wisley in April 2013, as well as the beautiful displays of spring flowers, including daffodils, I saw a lovely pink daffodil, “Chanson” and at that moment decided to grow some pink daffodils for a touch of the unusual

Come the autumn of 2013 and I was looking for bulbs of pink daffs the only ones I saw were at prices I was not willing to pay, like one pound or more per bulb, seem my tastes were a tad too exotic then.

Roll on three years, to autumn 2016 and an unsolicited catalogue from J Parkers arrived, with offers on pink daffodils, plus 40 free Tete a Tete with every order, the time had arrived to get in quick

Ordered bargain package of 15 Delnashaugh and 20 Salome, both £2.99 plus my 40 free Tete a Tete and they arrived very quickly, not quite by return of post but under a fortnight. Some of the Delnashaugh were a bit soft but all the other bulbs supplied were firm and a good size

That delivery re sparked my interest in daffodils and I decide to go big on daffs for 2017 spring both at home and in pots at Age Concern.

The free Tete a Tete were planted in pots both at home and Age Concern, and I set out to buy more bulbs for pots at Age Concern

I bought the following over the next month or so, in no particular order

All except Double Dick Wilden have Award of Garden Merit from RHS

10 Mount Hood [white] from Wilkinson’s £1.75

10 Mount Hood [white] from Wilkinson’s £1.00 reduced from £1.75

10 Double Dick Wilden [yellow double] from Wilkinson’s £1.00 reduced from £1.75

12 Minnow [white, lemon centre]from Home Bargains £1.00

36 Quail [bright yellow] from Home Bargains, all £1.00 they had run out of Minnow by the time I went back for more

All planted during October November 2016 in large pots at Age Concern, and at time of writing some are just poking above the soil