With the lighter evenings I've been able to get into the garden to begin the process of a very necessary clean up. It's mostly cosmetic but I've had to start the process of removing my large - and spreading - Chilean bamboo, Chusquea culeou. By spreading I don't mean invasive. It is a tight clumper. But it's still capable of expanding it's girth by 30cm / 1ft or more a year. In my small garden that's become too much - so it's going. The space will open up the west side of the rear garden and allow me to grow a wider range of plants.
Which means I'll be buying - always one of the enjoyable bits. Not that I ever really stop. Even in a small garden there is always room for plants that fit into the bare earth available at this time of year.
I always pot up a few bulbs in Autumn so that they can be planted out when I can see a space. Here's a couple that have flowered recently.
|Crocus chrysanthus 'Dorothy'|
|Tulipa humilis 'Persian Pearl'|
Little things - but pretty at a time of year when things are a bit bare and bleak.
I've got quite a few primula and polyanthus scattered around the plot but I couldn't resist adding a couple of Primula elatior hybrids, a gold and silver laced variety respectively. They're pretty little toys - but I prefer them to their blowsier cousins.
|Primula elatior 'Victoriana Gold Lace'|
|Primula elatior 'Little Queen'|
|Ipheion uniflorum 'Jessie'|
Meanwhile the garden is looking quite reasonable. The winter has been fairly mild and 5 of my 6 camellias are in full flower (C.sasanqua flowers in Autumn), rosemary, Hebe macrocarpa var. latisepala and Chasmanthe bicolor are all flowering well, and a window box of pansies is providing bright colour in front of the kitchen window. Best of all, my Beschorneria yuccoides is flowering. This produces a monumental flower spike - 3 ft / 90cm tall at the moment but it should reach 6-8ft / 180-240cm. And all clad in shocking pink. I'll record the progress of the spike for a future post.
There are a lot of plants enjoying the warmth indoors at the moment. Among my favourites is Aeonium 'Kiwi', a pretty little branching succulent with variegated red, yellow and green leaves. Obtained as a tiny rooted cutting last year, it's come on well over the winter and now looks like this.