A GARDENER’S DILEMMA
Some areas of my garden are incomplete. The bones are all there, but the planting is far from ‘done’. For example, the lilies I have recently featured …
are a perfect companion to Hydrangea paniculata …
however, they are planted on either side of the bench in my cutting garden and not together.
So here is this gardener’s dilemma…do I dig up the lilies and plant them with the hydrangea or transplant the hydrangea? That’s a young gardener’s thought process.
At my age I am thinking the easiest way to achieve what I would like, would be to strike cuttings of the hydrangea and plant them with the lilies. MUCH EASIER, the caveat being TIME. It will take a few years to get the effect I am looking for.
Why isn’t life simpler? The young have both the time and energy…. need I say more?
LILY LUST!!! or LE GRANDE SPECTACLE!!
“But whatever the people may see, they cannot help seeing the lilies. They are all over the house, like groups of dancers, poised and waiting; those that stand near mirrors seem to take on a silver sheen,and those that catch the glow of the candles are lit with gold; in the full light they sparkle like sunlit snow, in the shadows they are luminous…and always, upstairs, downstairs, in every nook and cranny, there is fragrance.” – Beverly Nichols
Above, Rosemary examines the bouquet. This lily is the last to bloom and marks the season’s end.
Oh the luxury of working with so many stems! MORE is definitely MORE!!
Lilium formosanum all grown from seed. By me.
MEANWHILE, BACK IN THE GARDEN…
I have mentioned often, how I find the large mophead hydrangeas very effective in the landscape, but when they start to look like this…
They have my heart!
In my mind’s eye I can see my grandmother’s garden, and smell the rich fragrance of old roses.
The last lily of the season is starting to bloom. More on her later…
I have been short on posts lately but hope to be back posting more regularly soon. If you are curious, here is my kitchen …
I have to ‘DO’ something with all if this!! Where does gardening end?????
Hopefully my friend Julieta of LINDARAXA can help. Her recipes are divine!!
HYDRANGEA, LILY, LILY……
Recently, Little Augury posted about Lilies. The Regale lilies in her garden, John Singer Sargent’s Carnation, Lily, Lily Rose, and Beverly Nichols’ love of Lilies. All favorites of mine.
Below, an interpretation with what I have in my garden now. Alas, no rose, no carnation, no children playing …. but Hydrangeas & Lilies in profusion.
Lilium ‘Touching’ above, supported by Oak leaf Hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia). Below, solo, three stems in Tulip shaped vase .
This Lily is best in the vase. The flower head is so heavy it breaks the stem.
A wonderful addition to the Cutting Garden.
MEANWHILE, in the Potager, Blueberries are coming in and Figs promise a bumper crop soon. The figs are ‘Brown Turkey’ & ‘Celeste’. Tune into LINDARAXA where my friend Julieta, will devise some recipes for all that comes in from the Potager.
© All photos 2011
THE CONTINUING SAGA OF…
Here is what I have learned about Lilium formosanum, The Formosa Lily.
It DOES have a fragrance… at night, not as sweet or strong as ‘Casablanca’ lilies, but potent none the less. They last perfectly for exactly three days in the vase before starting to decline. With judicious grooming the bouquet can last 4-5 days. I had to remove it from the house as both my husband and I experienced symptoms of allergy. Still we endured another 24 hours before relegating it to the veranda.
In the garden they are still going strong.
In the cutting garden their tall and lanky habit is exposed. BUT in my mind’s eye I have combined them with the Hydrangea paniculata blooming at the same time.
I think that would be a lovely plant marriage. The H. paniculata will provide the camouflage the gawky lily stems require, and the white flowers, one lacy…
the other bold …
will be a fabulous combination. (as is the one above) See this post on combining plants.
All in all the adventures with lilies comes to a close…for now, the seed heads are very interesting and I expect PLENTY of seed to share.
I wonder if the clematis buried in all that foliage could be persuaded to climb the lily stem…???
© All photos & text 2010
I cannot describe my elation when I came in with this bouquet gathered this morning.
Lilium formosanum. Stunning, but no fragrance. Okay, I’ll forgive that, very easy to grow, comes readily from seed & blooms the first year. In fact most all of these seeded themselves.
Late blooming with fabulous seed capsules that are choice if one does dry flowers for the winter BUT… knowing I would post about them today, I looked them up in Armitage*.
“Unfortunately bulbs are susceptible to virus diseases, particularly lily mosaic. The virus causes rapid decline of the bulb and increases the potential of infection to other bulb species in the garden. To avoid infection, it is not advisable to plant Formosa lilies among other lilies.”
Deflated!! Well I’ll think about that tomorrow, right now I am going to enjoy my Beverly Nichols* moment!
* Allan Armitage is THE acknowledged expert in herbaceous perennials & is professor in the department of Horticulture, University of Georgia. Author of Herbaceous Perennial Plants. A Treatise on their Identification, Culture and Garden Attributes. (a must for every garden library)
*Beverly Nichols (1898-1983) writer, best remembered for his gardening trilogy Merry Hall, Laughter on the stairs & Sunlight on the Lawn. He loved lilies and grew masses of them in his garden. More on Beverly Nichols here. (Another must for a garden library.)
© All photos & text 2010