Six on Saturday 6th February

Saturday again! The weeks are flying by which is odd because life is one long cycle of work, walk, Netflix, crochet and sleep at the moment – you’d think time would be dragging. Some positive news this week – over eleven million vaccinated but also, slightly concerning news that the South African variant has been found not a million miles away from home! Eek!

Moving swiftly on and pretending the bad stuff isn’t happening, and we find ourselves amongst Snowdrops! Hubby had to have a root canal filling on Thursday (considered setting up a crowd funding page – how can it cost so much to have pain inflicted upon oneself?!) and while I was waiting for him I decided to go for a walk and I found a lovely little park that I had no idea even existed. It had a couple of lakes, lots of ducks, geese and swans and millions of Snowdrops. Snowdrops are so pretty and delicate, but I don’t find them all that cheery because, to me, they symbolise Winter not Spring, the end of Winter maybe, but still Winter.

Now Daffs, on the other hand, are definitely cheery because they do offer me hope that Spring is on the way, bringing us warmer days and, most importantly, heralding the advent of Summer. Oh Summer how I do miss thee! Sadly, my Daffodil blooms are still a little way off bursting their bright yellow cheeriness out into the world, but they’re getting there and it surely won’t be too long till I look out of the kitchen window to see a pop of colour. Can’t wait!

Also looking good is my Rhododendron which was new to the garden during lockdown last year. I shared it in my final Six of 2020 and the buds are much bigger now. It’s been covered in snow and frost for much of the time in between its two starring roles, so I hope that hasn’t set it back. Time will tell.

Hubby’s at work today (hooray – finally he got some work again!) so I did my good deed for the day and got up early to drop him off and then decided to make the most of being up and about and took myself off for a walk in Sutton Park before the crowds descend. It was delicious me time, so rare at the moment for those of us who co-habit (the opposite being true for those who live alone). I wandered along the paths, listening to my audiobook and actually looked at my surroundings, which I tend not to do when I’m there with someone else chatting away. It was a very misty morning and the landscape looked quite stark – can’t you just imagine Heathcliff smouldering away somewhere amongst those trees?

Back home, and I popped straight out to the garden to complete my Six photos for today before I came to warm my bones next to a radiator.

This Clematis is acclimatising in the greenhouse at the moment. It arrived this week from Thompson and Morgan. I only went to their website to order raspberry canes because my Aunt told me now is a good time to plant them, but I ended up pre-ordering Begonias which will be despatched in May and a Sarcococca plant which my Aunt recommended for the scent, as well as the raspberry canes. Then this Clematis popped up as a special offer so it fell into my basket! I know exactly where I’m going to plant it once it’s warm enough. It’s Clematis Advent Bells which is, as the name suggests, winter flowering so hopefully next year we’ll have a bit of prettiness in the garden at Christmas. The raspberry canes have been delayed so I won’t get them till the end of February – hopefully they’ll still thrive, but I guess I probably won’t get fruit this Summer.

Finally as I was heading back inside I noticed the beautiful colour of one of my Hebes. I purposely planted this Hebe close to the house so that we could see some colour from our kitchen windows in the Winter.I don’t know what kind of Hebe it is because it came in a mixed pack of four just labelled Hebe variety pack (or some such generalisation). I don’t ‘do’ pink unless it’s really bright – can’t abide baby pink – but this is a gorgeously bright pop of colour to cheer even the dullest of days.

There we go, Six completed, so that’s one thing ticked off my to do list for today. What next? Clear some space for my newly completed Lego Diagon Alley? Watch episode three of Bridgerton? Clean the bathroom? While I ponder that, why don’t you check out some other Sixes at the Propagator’s blog?

Six on Saturday 30th January

Saturday again, the weeks are flying by. I’m so glad we’re in the last weekend of January and Spring is almost in touching distance, although it didn’t feel much like it earlier this week when we had a couple of deluges of snow. We were supposed to get more today, but so far we’ve had a few flurries but nothing to write home about.

My first couple of points are snow related. I’ve discovered that snow is not nearly so bad if you don’t have to drive in it, or at least not very far. In normal times, my commute is nearly twenty miles each way, and it’s a horrible thought that you could get stranded in snow halfway between work and home. This year though, with working from home, I didn’t have to worry about it and I felt able to enjoy the snow so …..

… I made a snowcat.

This next photo hasn’t come out as well as it looked in real life which is so often the case unless you have a fancy pants camera. The light is amazing when the world is covered in snow, isn’t it? The red berries of this shrub against the white background lit up by the light reflected off the snow looked stunning. It was all very peaceful. Although I don’t normally enjoy snow, I do appreciate the almost eerie quiet that seems to come with a covering of the white stuff.

Having said all that, I am happy that the snow’s gone now although I didn’t like watching my snowcat die a melty death!

The next photo is in the front garden. My Camellia has had buds since before Christmas, but so far nothing’s happening. They seem none the worse for the cold snap though, and hopefully the flowers will bloom soon. I can’t actually remember what month it normally flowers – I just know that the flowers don’t last nearly long enough for my liking! They’re so beautiful.

Also in the front garden today, I noticed the bluebells are starting to push through into the world again. After I noticed this first cluster, I noticed loads more. We have an abundance of bluebells in the front and back gardens and for me, they really signify the start of my favourite months of the year. It seems to take ages for them to flower, but once they do, we have a bluebell wonderland for a few weeks.

My penultimate point is very bizarre. I was wondering around the garden in the sleet this afternoon looking for things to include in this post, and I glanced over at the empty raised bed where I grew petit pois and carrots last year, and I spotted a leaf that looked suspiciously like a carrot leaf. Surely not, I thought, but yep, it was a carrot! In January! How has this happened?

Finally, I have some bunnies to share. I saw these on a gardening hour on QVC a few weeks ago and couldn’t resist. I mean, who could resist Peter Rabbit? This is probably not where Peter and his sisters will end up living, but I’ll have fun deciding where they can go. Hopefully I’ll be able to find somewhere I can see them from the house.

I found it easier to find points this week which I find encouraging. The garden is starting to come to life again, now I just need some dry weather so I can get out there and do some tidying up and start planning my Summer in the garden.

As ever, don’t forget to pop over to the Propagator’s blog to check out all the other Sixes published by this lovely community.

Six on Saturday 23rd January

Saturday again! The end of another week of working from home and the start of another weekend of lockdown! However, also a week closer to Spring. I’m still struggling to find anything of much interest in the garden, so much so that my final point today is from someone else’s garden that I saw on a lunchtime walk this week – although I do really wish it was in my garden!

Even my garden owl has had enough of it all this week and has collapsed amongst the Euphorbia and Rhododendron! I left him having a rest for now – the weather’s not great so he’ll only fall over again if I set him upright!

This is one of my Festuca Intense Blue babies that self seeded on the bistro. They seem to be able to cope with whatever the weather throws at them so this baby will be fine to grow into an adolescent once it can shake the snow off. It doesn’t look particularly blue, does it? The parent plant was very blue when I first bought it home, but all the babies are much more green than blue. Still gorgeous though so, c’est la vie!

Next is my first blueberry bush. I have some ericaceous compost in the garage and have been intending to repot this for months but it’s just always been too *cold/dark/wet (*delete as appropriate*). Must get round to doing this soon before it begins its new growth ready for lovely juicy blueberries this Summer. I have a second blueberry bush now (which is already lovingly potted up) and I’m hoping to promote some kind of competition between the two to get the most blueberries! The expression on my little dragon’s face I think is very appropriate for the current environment!

Now I’m moving on to a purple theme. I’m glad I stopped to prop this Hellebore under its chin! It’s had flowers for some time but they’re all resolutely pointing down towards the ground, so much so that they look like they’re not open, but open they are, and look how beautiful this one is. What a shame they’re being so bashful and not displaying their beauty for all to see.

Next purple plant is my Pittosporum. This changes colour throughout the year, sometimes being a mix of green and black as the new leaves come through, but at the moment it definitely fits in with a purple theme.

Finally, as mentioned, a plant from someone else’s garden on my walk. A gorgeous, and very purple Callicarpa Bodinieri. Regular readers will know that I acquired one of these around about this time last year, but that unfortunately it hasn’t produced any berries this Winter, so, suffice it to say, I was very envious of this one when I saw it. Another job on the list: relocate Callicarpa Bodinieri and keep fingers crossed.

There we have it, a very quick Six this week, and now I’m off to relax in a hot bubble bath with a magazine. Blissful! While I’m doing that, why don’t you check out the Propagator for more Sixes.