GARDEN TOUR 2

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One of the joys of the Garden Tour Season I always look forward to, is the tour put on by Georgia Perennial Plant Association. Several chosen gardens are opened to the membership for one week- end a year. Most gardeners would have bottled water and iced tea available for the visitors. Margaret Moseley would serve her famous Almond Tea whenever her garden was opened. Last week Pimento Cheese party sandwiches were passed around on silver trays for the guests! (Did I forget to mention that in the last post?)

For several years I served as the Tour Chairperson of this organization as well as The American Hydrangea Society. I know firsthand about what it takes to create a successful event. So I was not surprised that in recent years the format has changed and only one garden is opened for a day. I like this change. One no longer has to budget their time and rush to see as many gardens as possible in the allotted timeframe. These are SPECTACULAR gardens where one could happily spend the entire day and still not take it all in.

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This year, the garden of Lyndy Broder was the featured garden. Lyndy is a dear friend and an expert on the genus Clematis. Her knowledge and talents however, go far beyond Clematis.  She has collected an amazing variety of unusual and seldom seen trees and shrubs to create a personal arboretum ‘par excellence’ on her property….and almost all are festooned with the most delicious varieties of Clematis one could imagine.

P1240753                                                                       A wall of  seed grown species welcome visitors

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P1240771                                                                            Golden Larch (Pseudolarix  amabilis) with Clematis

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The Canadian Geese Meadow leading to the lake above.

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P1240768                                            The Sanctuary of St. Fiacre, patron saint of gardeners ( loved working with Lyndy on this project)

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When a garden of this caliber is open….. everyone comes. This turned into a reunion of great plantsmen and gardeners,  a huge amount of talent here, the energy was palpable.

RAINY DAYS

Not complaining, but these downpours really put a damper on going out to see what’s blooming in the garden, so….

P1230627on these rainy days I brought some of the garden indoors.

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sink above, is a new addition in utility room/downstairs potty/ mud/ laundry room.  Mirror will be painted & antiqued  with Annie Sloan paints and the room will be painted. Still contemplating colours.

MEANWHILE

Pictures taken between the raindrops, here is what’s  in the garden …

P1230583                                   Styrax obassia  delightful, fragrant, small tree that shades the entrance to the Potager

P1230587                                   Chinese Snowball Viburnum ( Viburnum macrocephalum)

P1230586                       Azaleas (Rhododendron indica ) and  Cranberrybush Viburnum (Viburnum opulus ) always good companions. LOVE the lime green phase of this shrub.

P1230581                            Viburnum ‘Kern’s Pink is what the label said. (Viburnum picatum ‘Kern’s Pink’) My plant has never seen even a blush. Beautiful none the less.

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A few Clematis too.

                    

 

SPRING IS HERE!!

I’m finally convinced that spring is here! Sufficient rain and warmer weather have created ideal conditions for an explosion of blooms.                                                                      Viburnum plicatum & Azalea

Above, Viburnum plicatum & Azalea indica ‘Formosa’

Hydrangea anomala petiolaris

Climbing the wall;  Hydrangea anomala petiolaris & Clematis ‘Freckles’ using it for support.

Phlox divericata

The Phlox divericata encouraged to naturalized between the daffodils.

Clematis "asao'
Clematis “asao’

I have pruned all the Hydrangea arborescens ‘Annabelle’, and almost all the Hydrangea paniculata. I still have to deadhead the Hydrangea macrophylla but I like to attend to those last lest I get too enthusiastic and remove this years flower buds.                                                                             Aesculus pavia

Aesculus pavia

  Pruned some of the clematis that require it and took an inventory of the garden.

Some of the news is not good. I have record losses this year. There is no sign of life on several Clematis, and my favorite Quince ‘Apple blossom’ has bit the dust.

Over the last few years I have let some shrubs go and now they require some drastic pruning. Good thing I bought a good excellent lopper. That is another post, promise.

FROM GARDEN TO VERANDA

 

                                                             

Bringing bouquets from the garden onto the veranda is a nice way to connect the garden to the house.

                                                                               

None of the big pots of hydrangeas  are here yet. I wait till the 15th of April before taking them out of the Bothy. That is our last frost date.

                                                                                     

As mentioned in earlier posts; If they make good companions in the garden they will combine well in the vase.

Going to post a Spring Garden Tour…stay tuned.

Clematis

 I recently posted about Clematis Bell of Woking, who reappeared after a two-year absence. I hope a few ‘no shows’ this year will surprise me in the future.

It is so disheartening to plant, feed and coddle a plant only to have it disappear, leaving so sign of life..not even a bit of dried stem!

Good to note here that I do NOT, as a general rule, coddle ornamental plants. I believe any plant worth its space should be able to survive on its own or with minimal attention; given a good start. BUT, with Clematis, it is another matter. For me, they are special. The jewelery in the garden; that one great  statement accessory that brings pizzaz to the basic little black dress (or am I dating myself here?)

 For some its roses or daylillies or Iris …for me its Clematis.

So, back to the Clematis Belle of Woking. Below, the bud…

                                                                                    

opening,  a bit like a cabbage….

                                                                                      

finally, fully open & stunning.

                                                                                     

WELCOME HOME! You have been missed (and about to be replaced!)

 

SURPRISE CLEMATIS!

Just as I thought the garden was winding down, look what I found…

                                                                                

  two surprise clematis!

                                                                                  

This little darling  above is Clematis odoriba … below, Clematis texensis  ‘Catherine Clanwilliam’.

                                                                            

What joy!!

 Clematis odoriba, is not covered in any of my books (and I have many).  Enter my super knowledgeable friend Lyndy Broder… (the Clematis Queen). She informed me that this plant was  bred by the late Mr Ozawa in the 1990’s  in Japan. It was only  introduced in the early 2000’s.

Mr. Ozawa crossed  two native American clematis,  Clematis viorna and Clematis crispa and created this beauty.

                                                                                        

 In Japan, these are grown extensively for the cut flower industry as they are favored in flower arrangements for the Tea Ceremony.

That got me thinking… I have a small collection of miniature, museum  reproduction, Japanese porcelain vases. They are the perfect size for a small sprig of  flowers… so..

        

Love the shadows, below…

                                                                           

She is wonderful close-up.                                                                                        

 The other Clematis that is blooming now, is Clematis texensisCountess Catherine Clanwilliam’.

I have posted about her several times (see categories), including an anecdote about  being contacted by an employee of THE Countess Catherine Clanwilliam. 

 In my garden she is one of  the all time winners,

                                                                                 

 blooming throughout the summer, and now she is blooming again. Not a big show but so appreciated  this time of  year.

Guess it comes as no surprise that both these super-acheivers are natives.

CLEMATIS, HYDRANGEAS & BURNT SUGAR

                                                                                                                                                                               

Nothing signals the end of summer like Sweet Autumn Clematis (Clematis terniflora) and  hydrangeas cut for drying.

                                                                                    

                                                                

The hydrangeas are cut with some ‘old wood’ I find they hold their shape better that way. Later, when I arrange them, I will cut the stem to whatever length required.

                                                                                      

Sometimes, when cut on the tender green stems, the flowers tend to curl up. These looks really luscious…

                                                                                  

 I hope they stay that way.

 The fragrance of  Sweet Autumn Clematis is one of my favorites; perhaps, because for me,  it  elicits  nostalgia.  When I went to cut a few sprigs, I caught the aroma of burnt sugar… Creme Caramel? I sniffed my way to the Katsuratree (Cercidiphyllum japonicum). Typically, when the leaves start to colour to a buttery yellow in fall, it emits a scent some have likened to cinnamon  or cotton candy.

                                                                                   

Mine, is definitely Creme Brulee!

With the temps consistently in the 90’s since May, I cannot say I am sorry to see this summer wind down. And…

                                                                                  

 the camellias are already showing their buds. I welcome another gardening season.

I posted about this clematis here, please read it if you plan on planting one.