From a Beginner


Our classes are for gardeners of all levels of skill and knowledge, and it’s lovely to see beginners looking at new ways to garden.  Here are a couple of images from one of our members who is finding her gardening feet.


Here we have some nasturtiums in a recycled bag that has been varnished for longer life.

Lesley's nasturtiums A


A pot fest of many plants.  I think I can see a baby fig tree in there, too.

Lesley's pot fest A


Tuesday Treats

There was a little drama getting onto WordPress for Tuesday Treats, but hopefully I’ll get this finished!

The answers to last week’s Tuesday Treats have been added in – they’re here, if you want to check:


It’s time for this week’s mystery plants.  See what you make of these.



Rob's Kniphofia A


2  The pink-flowered shrub

Rob's Weigela A


3  The orange flowers

Rob's poppies A


4  The purple flowers

Rob's Allium Purple Sensation A



Rob's dutch iris A


6  Yes, this plant.  Also, name the type of inflorescence, for Brownie points.

Rob's Arum italicum pictum A


7  The white flowers in the centre foreground.

Meg's white camassia A



Hugh's Nectaroscordum


Best of luck!



A Tough Time for Seedlings


Many people in the UK have spent more time in their gardens in the last two months than they have in the last two years.  That’s a good thing.

And many people, including our gardeners in the gardening classes, have been trying things they haven’t tried before.  Growing plants from seed for the first time is hard and uncertain, at least until those little green shoots pop up above the surface of the compost, making all the angst worthwhile.  Growing vegetables from seed is even more of a worry, even if you aren’t utterly dependent on what you grow for food on the table.  There’s so much to go wrong, you think, as you lovingly consign your tiny seeds to a pot or seed tray.

And then there’s the weather.  April here was very warm and dry.  May has been July, very hot and dry.  Except when it wasn’t, and went back to being January.  Temperature records have been broken in both directions.  This has been a tough month for seedlings and for first time seedling growers.  They’ve probably drunk a lot of tea and eaten a lot of cake fretting about it.

Still, these gardening students are tough, and their seedlings are tougher.  here are some pictures sent by one of our gardeners of her first efforts.

Seedlings of the pretty Knautia macedonica

Lesley's knautia seedlings A


Lettuce seedlings that have struggled a little with the heat…

Lesley's lettuce seedlings A


And have now picked up again after some TLC, or possibly a good talking to.  I find that both seem to work.

Lesley's lettuce seedlings 2 A


Rocket seedlings

Lesley's rocket seedlings A


You can see that there’s a great deal of recycling going on as well.

Let’s wish our gardener success in this first seed venture!

Things Missed


There are many things that we’re missing, even though the lockdown is easing just a tad.  Here’s a picture from my collection.  It was taken in 2016, at about this time of year, on a visit to Felley Priory.  I want one.


Felley Priory 2019


It’s a wonderful apricot tree peony with a wisteria.  I would have loved to see it again this year – and all of Felley Priory’s other treasures.  Ah well, next year maybe…

The Golden Pea

For years I had a golden pea – Lathyrus aureus – which I’d grown from seed.  Then, the rabbits decided they liked it too.  The rest is a dismal story.

After its demise, I tried to grow another one, but all attempts failed.  Then, one of our gardeners in the Gardening class gave me a seedling from their Golden Pea.  She has just asked me if it still survives, and sent me a picture of the parent plant.

Yes it does survive!  And it’s flowering right now.

This is the picture sent to me of its Mum, or Dad, or both…  And a lovely thing it is.


Judy's Lathyrus aureus A

It’s a shrubby, herbaceous plant, not a climber.

Thanks for giving me one of your offspring!  :~))