so, ok, I cheated, these were taken yesterday, as I couldn’t hold a camera steady with frozen shoulder/dead arm on the actual solstice, but these pictures are about the very green lushness of the garden at this point. We have had a wretchedly long winter, but at last some blue skies and warm summer sun are bringing out the flowers. A fortnight ago the foxgloves were nowhere, now they’ve catapulted themselves up in places I don’t remember planting them:

STA45085STA45084 these are taken from the back of the rockery, which is now becoming an island bed between Ben’s new raised beds and his badminton lawn. He has uncovered some more lovely rocks and done some more heavy pruning, but has left this holly arch for me to play with ๐Ÿ™‚


– with holly and ornamental thistle, this is a very prickly bed ๐Ÿ˜‰

I love the contrast of the rocks and the lush vegetation though this is very non traditional for a garden, ornamental rockeries traditionally have alpines, and small tidy succulents, but I like the feel of being on the edge of a shaded woodland glade – as there are giant copper beeches at the drive gateway, with hollies as tall beside them, and then the badminton lawn, this makes for a very natural feel AND a lovely surprise for an inner city garden, all at the same time. ๐Ÿ™‚


I thought the foxgloves I grew on the allotment were huge, but the super rich ‘forest floor’ of the reclaimed rockery is making giants, this is the biggest basal of a foxglove I’ve ever grown, it’s at least 12″/30cm across, more like 20″/50cm…STA45091

The liquorice blue agastache looks lovely against the dilapidated creosoted shed, and the bees are in heaven, we saw at least 3 kinds, with about 3 dozen in total, one bumble bee was wobbling around very drunk between two of the biggest flowering foxgloves ๐Ÿ˜‰





















I’ve never seen this grass before, and wonder if the pollen is what is making me sneeze every morning…it grows from strap rosettes, a bit like bluebells….Yes that sycamore needs chopping back again already…

my potatoes are doing well:

STA45106 and right next to them, I saw a Monet in ivy…Monet is famous among painters for the variety of his brushstrokes, 28 different styles of mark in a small square is average for him. Look at all the different ivy leaf shapes in this square foot:


and finally, my sweet peas are out! Jen came round and said how lovely it was to smell them as she waited (I am very slow to the door) and I really like how welcoming the pot is. That’s the spring one, daffs, violets and sweet peas, now I need to think about an autumn one ๐Ÿ™‚ I have some heritage peas, a salmon flowered short ‘umbrella’ kind and gave Jen some for her allotment, but may use the rest in the next tub, with some autumn bulbs and cyclamen…