Tuesday Treats

A little late today, but it’s time for Tuesday Treats.

Last week’s post has been edited to show identities, and can be found here:

https://thepleasuregardener.blog/2020/08/11/tuesday-treats-19/

So, what do we have today?  Let’s see…

1   Edited to add:

This is the white version of Tigridia pavonia (the name, roughly, means Tiger Peacock).  These tender bulbs are not grown as much as perhaps they should be – they sell at about 10p each, so not a big investment.  These are a bit short because of the drought we’ve had – they’re about 2 ft tall.  Tigridia can get to 3-4 ft, , so quite impressive.  They are members of the Iris family, with several flowers per stem.  They come in red, yellow, pink or white.

Jo's Tigridia

 

2   Edited to add:

These are Begonia semperflorens, or the wax begonia.  They are grown here as annual bedding plants, but are tender perennials.  They root from cuttings very easily, and once the weather turns in autumn, they can be dug up, potted up, and will give months more of colour either in the greenhouse or on a windowsill.  I’m a particular fan of dark-leaved cultivars like these.

Glynis's Begonia A

 

3   Edited to add:

Agapanthus.  The photo’s owner didn’t say which sort.  I’m guessing they came in a big bag from the supermarket…

Rob's 2 A

 

4  As many of the things as you can name

Edited to add:   The main subject is the Aeonium arboreum.  The red leaves peering over the wall are Persicaria ‘Red Dragon’.  The trough contains sedums, sempervivums and echeveria.  The grassy plant in the pot is not a grass, but a member of the Lily family.  It’s Ophiopogon planiscapus.  Some are the species’ green, others are the black of ‘Nigricans’.  The lovely thing about Ophiopogon is that, if you save the seed from ‘Nigricans’, the seedlings exhibit almost perfect Mendelian inheritance ratios for green or black colour.  Try it.

Glynis's Aeoniums plus A

 

5  The yellow things

Edited to add:  The yellow thing is Rudbeckia ‘Goldsturm’.  With it is a rose, agapanthus, eleagnus and what looks like a Ribes, identity unknown.  Oh, I wonder whether it’s a hardy hibiscus…  Not sure.

Rob's 3 A

 

6   Edited to add:

White Cosmos ‘Psyche White’ and Lavatera ‘Mont Blanc’, with Dahlia Bishop of ‘Llandaff’ in the background.  But the main event is the orange Canna ‘Durban’.  There’s a long story of litigation over Plant Breeder’s Rights on this, which I will share if anyone is interested.  But it shines a light on the South African Appeal Court, for whom much paperwork was prepared.  However, the judge was only interested in what must have been about the first line, identifying the owner of the Plant Breeder’s Rights as someone who ‘discovered’ the plant in a garden in Durban.  No, no, no, said the judge.  You can’t discover something growing in someone else’s garden, because it is already known.  Appeal upheld!  Don’t you love judges with minds like a bacon slicer?

Jo's Canna Durban

 

7  Edited to add:  The real plant is a richer, deeper red than this – a red that my camera doesn’t handle very well.  This is Crocosmia ‘Hellfire’, and is a gorgeous plant, far better than ‘Lucifer’, with huge flowers.

Jo's Crocosmia Hellfire

 

8  Edited to add:  My apologies.  I wasn’t specific enough, I think.  Yes, there are Cosmos in the picture – the varying shades of Cosmos ‘Rubenza’.  But the main event is the Salpiglossis ‘Black Trumpets’.  I used to grow Salpiglossis years ago, and they were just over a couple of feet in height.  Things seem to have changed, and these are about 10 inches.  But, they have been very good, and I’m pleased with them.

Jo's Salpiglossis

 

Good luck!

 

Edited to add:  So, how did you do?  Treat yourself to a virtual chocolate if you got any right.  Well done!

 

A Garden View

 

It’s always nice to see other people’s gardens, and for the last few months, we haven’t had a chance to do that.  Except, of course, here in this blog.  Today, we’ve got some lovely pictures from a new contributor, with lots of interest and colour, and making the most of every inch.  Let’s have a wander…

 

Maxine 1 A

 

Maxine 2 A

 

Maxine 3 A

 

Maxine 4 A

 

Thanks for sharing!

Tuesday Treats

Our last Tuesday Treats has now been edited to show the identities of the plants on the Nature Table.  It’s here:

https://thepleasuregardener.blog/2020/08/04/tuesday-treats-18/

I thought we might change things around just a little bit for Tuesday Treats.  Still the Nature Table, of course, but it’s a different sort of Nature Table.  We’ve had a couple of weeks of tricky ones.  This one should be easier.  It’s from the allotment, so expect to see veggies!  This change, to easier challenges, won’t always last, but this week I have my Annual Review as a tutor, so I need you to show progress in your recognition skills!  :~))

The second little variation is…  If you look at the header for the blog, it says:

If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

We haven’t really touched on the library part, so I thought I might share with you what I’m reading, and you might sometimes share what you’re reading.  What do you think?

I’m reading ‘The End of Everything  (Astrophysically Speaking)’.  It’s by cosmologist Katie Mack, and it’s meant for public consumption.  It explores how the Universe got started, and the different ways in which it might come to an end.  It’s very interesting.  Did you know this – we speak of the observable Universe, i.e. the bit we can see with our range of telescopes and such.  We can’t see further, not because our kit is lacking, but because the observable Universe is bounded everywhere by a wall of flame, a nuclear inferno, space on fire from the Big Bang 13.8 billion years ago.  The light from that inferno and from that long ago time is just reaching us now.  And, you can’t see through fire.  We will never see what is on the other side of that wall of flame.  How about that?

If you like a bit of science, this book is recommended.  (People who know me will know that no money was received for that recommendation.  In fact, I paid money to be able to read the book!)

Right, the Nature Table.

1  What’s in the trug?

Edited to add:  Sweet peas – lovely!  I’ve got no information on the veg varieties except, if I remember right, the tomatoes are Sweet Million.  Then there are potatoes, looking very tasty, radish – might be French Breakfast, with its white-tipped longer root – and beetroot.

Across the Atlantic, I think that beetroots are called beets, whereas here, the word ‘beets’ is more for sugar beet, grown as cattle fodder or, more importantly, for sugar.  Did you know that, in the UK, there are two primary suppliers of sugar, Tate and Lyle, and British Sugar.  Tate and Lyle get their sugar from sugar cane, while British Sugar (packaged as Silver Spoon) get theirs from sugar beet.  British Sugar is the only company in the world manufacturing sugar from sugar beet.

 

Nat's 1 A

 

2  What have we got here?

Edited to add:  Yes, sweet corn!  Never grown in rows, because it’s pollinated by the wind.

 

Nat's 2 A

 

3  The veg and the flowers, please.  And why are they together?

Edited to add:  Peas, which have come back from the dead.  They were eaten off by rabbits, but look at them now!

The flowers are Tagetes, or Tagetes tenuifolia, those smaller relatives of French and African marigolds.  These look like Starfire Mixed, the commonly available strain.  They’re commonly used for companion planting, especially with tomatoes, to keep pests such as whitefly away.

Nat's 3 A

 

4  The flowers, please, both lots.

Edited to add:  Dahlias and nasturtiums.

I know the dahlias came in a bag labelled ‘Mixed’, so great value there, but we can’t recover the names.

Dahlias are classified into 14 different groups, depending on flower form.  This pretty red and white one looks like a decorative dahlia, or possibly a waterlily.

Nat's 4 A

 

5  The flowers in this image, and in the last, are classified into 12 different groups.  Decide which groups are represented in these two images.

Edited to add:  Sorry, it really is 14 – I think.  Sources seem to differ.  Dahlias again, from that same mixed bag.  The purple and white ones (might be a variety called Checkers) look like decorative dahlias.  The red ones behind might be cactus (very narrow petals) or semi-cactus (not quite so narrow petals).

Nat's 5 A

 

And that’s it!  Easy peasy.  Probably.

Good luck.

Edited to add:  So, how did you get on?  Virtual hot chocolate all round?  Well done!

 

 

A Tale of Two…Crinums

 

Well, not really a tale, but I couldn’t resist…  I have two images of Crinum x powellii, all dressed up for a summer party.  Let’s hope there aren’t any beheadings…

 

Jo's Crinum A

I had this Crinum in a pot for a couple of years – and it did flower – but, for one reason or another I finished up with a number of pots of Crinum, so decided to take the risk and put one out into the garden.  That was three years ago, and this is the second year that it’s flowered.  For scale, the white Phlox on the left is about 4ft 6ins tall.  The foliage is remarkably free of slug damage.  Today, I counted 12 flowers and buds on the taller spike.  It’s never been as good.  And, while the central bulb is huge, now, there are a whole flock of adolescent-sized youngsters.

And, one of our gardeners has sent an image of his Crinum, which I’m sure is in a pot.

Hugh's Crinum A

It, too, looks as though there are a goodly number of buds coming up from the centre, so it’s definitely a good year for Crinums.

They don’t last for very long, but I do love something as flamboyant as this.  And it seems that pot or garden will do – at least until we get a bad winter.

 

 

Tuesday Treats

 

It’s Tuesday Treats time again.  Last week’s has now been edited, to show the answers, and it’s here:

https://wordpress.com/post/thepleasuregardener.blog/1591

Let’s see what’s on the Nature Table this week.

 

1  Edited to add:  This is Eryngium.  It’s probably E. planum, but it could be E. bourgatii.  Whichever, it’s commonly called Sea Holly, largely because it’s prickly and lives by the sea.  The thing about growing near the sea, unless you get too close, is that you tend to be growing in sand, which is extremely well drained.  That’s what it likes.

Glynis's Harlow Carr 2 3 A

 

2  Edited to add:  This isn’t easy, but we did see some on the Nature Table very recently.  It’s Veronicastrum.  This is from Harlow Carr, and I think the ones on the left are their plantings of Veronicastrum virginicum ‘Fascination’.  The main clump that we’re looking at has different coloured spikes, and I’m prepared to hazard a bet that they are Veronicastrum virginicum ‘Erica’, which opens pale pink from redder buds.

Glynis's Harlow Carr 2 4 A

 

3  Edited to add: This is Helenium.  No name was attached to the image, but I suspect, from the time of flowering, that it might be ‘Sahin’s Early Flowerer’ AGM.  The common name for Helenium is Sneezeweed because, I understand, people used to make a form of snuff from it.  People also used to make a form of coffee from acorns, when things got really bad.  Because you can, doesn’t mean you should…

Glynis's Harlow Carr 2 11 A

 

4  Edited to add: This is Russian Sage, Perovskia atriplicifolia.  Oh no, it’s not.  It’s Salvia yangii.  Who knows what Mr Perovski might think, but renaming has taken place.  However, the Royal Horticultural Society heads the data entry as Salvia yangii, but the text refers to Perovskia atriplicifolia.  Also, they’re selling it as Perovskia atriplicifolia, so the change seems to be a bit, um, half-hearted.  Whatever you call it, this is a plant that needs drainage as good as that for the Eryngium.

Glynis's Harlow Carr 2 12 A

 

5  Edited to add: Hippeastrum.  You usually buy these bulbs in a box from the supermarket, where they are inevitably called Amaryllis.  But, they are Hippeastrum, meaning ‘knight’s star’, as in a mounted rider, and the star on his horse’s forehead.  It’s a bit romantic, but who’s to argue?  Normally in flower round about Christmas, you can see from the rest of the picture that it’s flowering now this minute.

Hugh's Hippeastrum A

 

6  Edited to add:  The email said that this was some sort of mallow, rest of the name unknown.  I don’t know what it is, and wonder whether it’s one of those mallow relatives, such as Anisodontea.  But I don’t know.

Judy's IMG_1172 A

 

Good luck with these!

Edited to add:  So, how did you do?.  Whatever the result, award yourself a virtual cup of hot chocolate.  With marshmallows.

Plants Anonymous

 

Most of the plant images I’m sent by my groups of gardeners come with no indication of what the plant might be.  I recognise a lot of them (possibly because many have been swapped in class!), but not all.

Here’s one that has got me scratching my head.  It isn’t from some posh garden, but from our own gardeners’ garden, so I’m hoping he does actually know, at the end of the day, and is just teasing me.

Help?  Does anyone recognise it?

Hugh's plant 1

Failed again… ;~)

When these daily blog posts started, it was to relieve the tedium and isolation of lockdown for everyone in the classes.  Now that lockdown is easing, although that’s only by baby steps right now, it seems appropriate to revise the schedule a bit.  After today Tuesday Treats will stay, and two other days, one being Friday.  Everything else will be more… as and when…

It’s been wonderful, the way the classes have pulled together to keep the images coming.  Thanks, guys!

So, what’s the plant?

A Garden View

 

Another one of our gardeners has sent me images of what her garden looks like this week.  Let’s see…

 

Meg's garden mixed Digitalis Firebird, selfsown cosmos A

The pink stems of flowers here are one of the new inter-generic hybrid foxgloves, Digiplexis ‘Firebird’, or is it called Digitalis x valinii?  There seems to be disagreement.  Probably the latter, since one of its parents, Isoplexis canariensis has now been reclassified as Digitalis canariensis, having shown that it could successfully be crossed with Digitalis species.  It was bred in the UK.

The Cosmos plants are self-sown – the seeds seem to happily survive the winter, since this gardener makes a habit of doing this every year.

 

Meg's Rose Lichfield Angel A

This David Austin rose is ‘Lichfield Angel’.

 

Meg's roses ThankYou and Lichfield Angel, Allium Millenial A

‘Lichfield Angel’ again on the right, and ‘Thankyou’ on the left of the bird bath.  Allium ‘Millenial’ is about to open up next to the bird bath.

 

Meg's Campanula Dwarf Pink A

This is Campanula lactiflora ‘Dwarf Pink’.  I know it well – it was one of the range of seeds that was included in the seed sowing exercise that I set the groups three or four years ago.  Here, the word ‘dwarf’ is definitely relative.  The plant grows about 6 inches shorter than normal C. lactiflora.

 

Meg's monarda A

Monarda, probably ‘Adam’, that seems to really be enjoying itself.

 

Thanks for sharing!

 

 

Tuesday Treats

 

Last week we had a mystery plant assailant, chewing discrete chunks out of the juicy midribs of plants such as Hydrangea aspera and Rodgersia pinnata.  That mystery remains to be solved, so thinking caps on, please.  Mind you, that matter has been referred to the RHS’s Advisory Service, and they don’t know either.  Perhaps it’s a really small vegan alien.

This week, we are reverting to form with a Nature Table of plants to identify.  See what you make of these.

 

1  Edited to add

Sempervivum flowers.  These succulents have flowers with an almost alien beauty.  Each rosette grows for a number of years, and then flowers, but only the once.  Having flowered, that rosette dies, and if you’ve given away all the offsets to friends, you’ll be left without.  So, no matter how many offsets the plant grows, remember to keep some for yourself.

Tony's 5 A

 

2  Edited to add:

A white lacecap hydrangea.  It is exactly the same as the more familiar mophead hydrangeas – they are both cultivars of Hydrangea macrophylla.  The small flowers are the actual flowers.  The large white ones are sterile bracts.

Hugh's H Felley Priory(9) A

 

3  Edited to add:

This caused some head-scratching, but I kno0w it well, having wrestled with it, nursed it to health many times, and eventually composted it. (This one is Felley Priory’s, not mine.)  It’s Fuchsia arborescens.  It’s probably striking as a large’ish tree, but as a pot plant, it’s interesting to grow, but not interesting enough to buy a second time round, in my opinion.  It flowers only on the very tips of the branches, so flowering is sparse, and it gets woody very quickly, so if you try and limit the size, foliage gets a bit sparse, too.  But it is interesting.

Hugh's H Felley Priory(12) A

 

4  Edited to add:

This is a martagon lily, that wonderful woodlander.  Lilium martagon ‘Album’.

Hugh's H Felley Priory(24) A

 

5  Edited to add:

This is a Cornus, a flowering dogwood.  It looks a little bit like ‘Eddie’s White Wonder’, but I’m just guessing there.

Hugh's H Felley Priory(37) A

And a closer look:

Hugh's H Felley Priory(38) A

 

6  Edited to add:

A Lychnis, but its name didn’t accompany the picture.  If I were guessing again, I’d suggest Lychnis chalcedonica ‘Carnea’.  ‘Carnea’ means ‘flesh-coloured’.

Judy's Lychnis chalcedonica Carnea A

 

7  Edited to add:

‘Potentilla’, the email said.  Ah, but which one?  It looks like nepalensis to me, so I’m going to have a stab at ‘Melton Fire’.  Thompson and Morgan have been pushing this for some years, certainly long enough for the plant to be planted and the name forgotten…

Judy's Potentilla A

 

8  Edited to add:

Catananche caerulea, Cupid’s Dart.  Might be the variety known as ‘Major’.  A pretty, but short-lived perennial, needing well-drained soil to persevere.

Lesley's Catananche A

 

9  Edited to add:

Diascia personata.  Most diascia are relatively tender, and relatively short, good for summer baskets and containers.  Not this one.  It can grow up to 4ft tall, and it never stops flowering.  It comes from South Africa, where it is pollinated by just one species of bumble bee with the right sized tongue to reach the nectar.  That bumble bee does not occur here in the UK, so the plant never sets seed.  It just keeps on flowering.  Mine is regularly in generous flower in December.  it’s hardy, too, although somewhat short-lived.  A cutting or two is a good idea.

Meg's Diascia personata A

 

10  Edited to add:

Another hydrangea, but quite different to the lacecap above.  This is Hydrangea paniculata, with longer, pointed flowerheads.  The cultivar is ‘Pinky Winky’, and the white flowers do, indeed, fade to deep pink at the end of the season.  Unlike Hydrangea macrophylla, this is not a woodland edge plant, and it needs full sun to give its best.  It flowers best on new wood, so has a different pruning regime to H. macrophylla.

Meg's Hydrangea paniculata Pinky Winky A

 

Good luck!

Edited to add:  So, how did you do?  If you got any of them, have a chocolate biscuit!  Well done!