I was going to do a knitting update as several projects have made real progress, but there's more going on in the garden at the moment so I'm doing that first!
I had a lovely day out with my Mum to the Royal Horticultural Society gardens at Wisley (more in a different post), and bought a couple more plants so that I could plant up this new border. The new plants are a Physocarpus, plus a Heuchera "Chocolate Ruffles", to go with two Euonymus "Emerald n' Gold" we already had, a Phlox and a rose we were given as a wedding present. Of course, it's been ridiculously warm ever since, over 30°C sometimes, so we've ended up having to water these a lot to help them settle in!
We've been able to harvest some produce already. This was the first strawberry, and we've had loads more since then. Unknown variety, I propagated our plants from runners from one plant given to us by a friend a few years ago.
The apple trees both have a lot of fruit ripening, which I've thinned out in the hope of ensuring at least some of them get as far as the eating stage. Unfortunately the squirrels love eating them before they're ripe, so we have a strong suspicion that we're not going to get to eat the ones from the espalier tree as there's no way of protecting it. This fruit below is on the standard tree, which I think we might manage to protect.
The first lot of broad beans I brought in from the garden today. Can't wait to eat them tonight, combined with...
the first crop of potatoes!
In the less edible but pretty side of gardening the Phlox paniculata is in full flower, and much loved by the bees.
All the fuchsias are developing flowers, but this one, Fuchsia Mojo Boogie is my favourite (Fuchsia Mojo is a newly bred range). We've had a few accidents with it, as the first one I had was trodden on by a builder when we had a new wall built, so I had to get replacements the next year. It's also only half-hardy so had to spend the winter in the cold frame. But worth it for the beautiful flowers.
This is my now huge Eryngium planum, which I bought for £1.50 as a teeny tiny plant last year at a nursery 'oop north (where plants are a LOT cheaper). I was hoping it would get big, as it's a really good source of nectar for insects, as well as having seed heads that look dramatic through the winter. And it has SO many more flowers on it that last year, it's brilliant. Behind it you can see the wire netting I've put up so I can espalier the Pyracanthas. (does this sound like I actually know what I'm talking about?!) The Pyracanthas were rather spiky to prune, but I did manage it with many "Ows".
I'm rather pleased with this new acquisition (as a plug plant) last year - it's a new type of Foxglove, called "Illumination Pink", which won Plant of the Year at Chelsea last year and is perennial. We've got three of them and they've all grown really well and have beautiful flowers this year. Next year it should be even bigger with even more flowers.
And this is the rather pretty Sisyrinchium, which I've had to move as it wasn't very happy where I'd originally planted it a couple of years ago. It's now flowering in its new home.
I've using the RHS' Plants for pollinators list when planning what plants to buy, as it helps you find plants that flower throughout the year.
That's all for now, I'll be back soonish for more of an update!