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Lyn and Malcolms Garden Blog
May  2011


May 31st
The temperature was a cool +3.9c last night, so still hanging on to put the final plants outside in the exotic garden, plants such as Ipomoea 'Morning Glory' and Ipomoea lobata which are flowering in the conservatory.
We enjoyed our dinner sat on the patio this evening, the sun was shining brightly and we were surrounded with plants. What a way to end the month of May.

Much more colour to come by the time our open days arrive. 

The Dahlias in pots will be in flower and the Brugmansias have lots of buds, and of course many more plants you can't see in these pictures.

May 28th
Nearly at the end of another month and the weather is quite a bit colder, still with a strongish wind. The temperature last night went down to +5.9c.
It is a bit quiter for us in the garden at the moment, but the next big job is sorting out the plants on the plant stall and pricing them. Also we have so many plants to sell, some are still stored in the back of the Exotic garden, they have to be moved somewhere to allow the placing of the exotic plants to finally be finished.
The Roscoea are coming on well, most are showing above ground now, and two new additions are in flower.

Roscoea 'Harvington Raw Silk'

Roscoea "Harvington Royal"

May 25th
Just as an experiment I went out in Lyn's garden late last night and took some flash pictures. If nothing else at least they are a different view on the garden, I leave it to you to decide for yourself.

May 24th
Time to post a few pictures from Lyn's garden today, after featuring the Exotic garden for the last two days.
The Roses are starting to flower well now, it seems more flowers on each than we can remember. So here are six of the twenty six we have in the garden. As far as I can remember all are scented.

Rosa 'Jacques Cartier'                                                                         Rosa 'Dublin Bay'

Rosa we don't know the name of. Supposed to be French.                  Rosa 'Special Anniversary' which seems to have a double centre.

Rosa moyessi 'Geranium'                                                                       One that Lyn inherited many years ago.

May 23rd
Thankfully we don't live in Scotland with the severe gales they experienced today. Down here in the south it was a very gusty wind, it broke off one of the banana Musa Basjoo leaves, and gave the larger Brugmansia leaves a battering. I had tied the Brugmansias against the wind as they are in pots, and can easily get blown over. Lyn had plenty of supports hidden in the plants in the front garden and had tied in new growth on the clematis yesterday. So it was not as bad as I had expected.

I am still trying to gat the last pictures of the 1,100 odd plants we have in the garden, at the moment I need 79 more. I keep an eye out every day to see if any of those 79 come into flower. Of course I won't get them all even this year, about 4 so far this year have failed to flower.
Later on about September I will update our Plant Guide to reflect the new and changed plant pictures.

Echium piniana 'Pink Tower', Ensete ventricosum 'Montbiliardii'
and Tracycarpus fortunei                                                                      My workshop tarted up a bit on the outside !


May 21st
We are beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel now, with getting the Exotic garden ready for our visitors. We even had time to sit and have lunch and dinner here on our small patio. Ok so there is not much colour from the flowers yet, but Dahlias for instance are showing buds, and all being well we will have a good show for the Swedish Garden tour group on July 1st.

A view across the top of the Agarve

May 19th
We have had no rain again for over a week, so we are still having to water the garden. The sun combined with a breeze, dries the front of the borders that face the sun very quickly, on our sandy soil.
In the Exotic garden pretty well all the plants are outside now, and I have been getting them into their places for the summer.
I have cleaned the conservatory inside and out, after a lot of the tender plants spent the winter inside.
We have to move some of our sale plants which are overflowing the sales benches, to other sites in the village, several people allow us to use a corner of their garden for temporary storage.

Lyns garden today, it's a job to see the smaller plants in flower on this picture. Needless to say the summer flowers are budding up now.

A little corner of the exotic garden.

May 16th
This baby Blue Tit turned up on the back lawn this morning, it really couldn't fly at all. So how did it get there, with six fot high walls or fences around the back garden. There is a nest in the top nest box on the birch tree in the front garden, and we noticed that the parent birds were not going in and out feeding the babies, so can only guess this is one of the babies that has flown/ fallen from the box.
I watched this bird for over an hour, and only saw it being fed once, despite it calling desperately. I didn't think it had much chance of survival.

An hour later and it was joined by another slightly more robust baby Blue tit, and now both were calling for food. Happily the two calling did bring a response, and mother or father could be seen feeding them.
Hopefully we will see them again tomorrow.

May 15th
Still potting or repotting plants for most of the day, pretty boring but has to be done. Some of the plants for sale have grown so much with the decent weather, that we have to either pot them into larger pots, or split them. As they are already in 2 or 3 litre pots we ended up splitting most.
Night temperatures have recovered to a reasonable 7 to 8c at the moment so pressure off for frost.
I did manage to take a few plant picture late afternoon, here are some.

A Dwarf Lupin we don't know the name of.                                              And another plant Lyn bought yesterday she doesn't know it's name.

Viola cornuta 'Alba'                                                                                   Astrantia 'Pink form'

Gerbera 'Everlast pink'                                                                             Citrus 'Villafranca' I just love the scent from the flowers 'Malcolm'

Abutilon 'Bella F1' we grew from seed.                                                    Tomatoes in the greenhouse.

May 10th
A lot of our spare time at the moment is taken up with potting up sale plants.
The Colocasias (Elephants ears) and the red leaved bananas are now out in the Exotic garden. We are just waitng another week or so before settinng out the annual climbers we grew from seed, Thunbergia, Ipomoea to name a few. The forecast is still suggesting the possibility of grass frost in places later in the week.

A Green Rose Chafer. It wasn't anywhere near a rose at the time. After having its picture taken it flew off strongly across the main road.

I can't remember the proper name for this Bumble bee, which was on a Cirsum rivulare 'Atropurpureum'

May 5th

Lyn's garden today, just going through what we call the "green stage". The Narcissii and other spring bulb foliage is still on the plants, the herbaceous plants are budding up, as are the roses and lilies.

One of Lyn's secrets, no label for it, and she has forgotten what it is.    
Well it is a Allium, but which one we will have to wait and see.                  Geranium 'Elke'

May 2nd
So far this year it has been a good year for the large amount of flowers on the clematis, the two pictures below show only some of the flowers on one plant.
We shall be keeping a watch on the temperature tonight as there could be a frost, the fleece is outside ready in case we have to cover some of the tender plants.  

( I was outside at 11pm covering the plants. The temperature went down to +1.6c by early morning, so a slight ground frost, but not an air frost. Just as well as it is impossible to cover the bananas and brugmansias now.)

Clematis 'Mrs Cholmondley'                                                                      Clematis 'Nelly Moser'

May 1st
Well I made the decision to get all the Brugmansia out of the conservatory and to plant up the Gazania bed.
The weather was good for getting the Brugmansia out in the garden, hazy sun, warm but a bit breezy. They must not be put straight out into hot bright sun, as the leaves can scorch.

All the over wintering constructions are now gone. The Agarve are in the gravel bed and the Bananas  musa basjoo are exposed to the elements.
Last autumn I noticed a flower bud on one of the bananas, and it is still there with small bananas behind the flower. They will never be edible, our summers are too short for the fruit to enlarge and ripen.

Musa basjoo flower and fruit                                                               Clematis 'Josephine' round the front door.