Tuesday, September 18, 2018

White Daffodils

Not everybody is a fan of yellow. I admit I find it disappointing when yellow daffodils are flowering at the same time as pink cherry trees - ruins both, in my opinion. BUT - a great answer to that is white daffodils, which can't possibly clash with anything. There are so many varieties around. These ones at my office are Thalia. Tall enough to peep over the top of a buxus hedge, and particularly valuable amongst deciduous shrubs like Hydrangea and Fothergilla, as they flower when the shrubs are still leafless.

Tall enough to peep over the top of a buxus hedge. 

There is a huge variety of predominantly white daffs to choose from these days.

Monday, August 27, 2018


The Cancer Society's Annual Daffodil Day has arrived again - another reminder Spring is almost almost here. We are lucky enough to have a driveway full of these beautiful doubles that last for weeks and weeks. An oddly warm winter has meant they opened 3 weeks early, so many were too old to pick, but I still found hundreds of clean fresh buds to take in to the amazing team that bunch them to sell this week. Fingers crossed they make loads of money.

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Oriental Lilies - Black Beauty

For any of you wanting a beautiful pink lily - this one comes very highly recommended. The plant is tall and sturdy, and the flowers last for months. I love the foliage as it is growing over summer, then the dying leaves glow yellow into late autumn - adding a great colour highlight to the garden. I cannot recommend it highly enough - I love it. And that is coming from someone who does not like pink!!
Lilium Black  Beauty - Oriental Lily
Really sturdy plants, that withstand wind.
Autumn colours - the leaves glow amongst evergreen foliage
And below are some of the plants I have partnered with the Lily - more burgundy than pink for me
Echinacea purpureum and Allium

Scabiosa Crimson Clouds
Eupatorium maculatum
This lily is being advertised in at least one NZ bulb catalogue right now - (Garden Post). Not sure if you can buy it in shops. Get some!!

Monday, May 7, 2018

Fothergilla and Salvia 'Ember's Wish'

This sight greets me each morning as I arrive at my office. The early morning sun just glows on the leaves of the Fothergilla, and the Salvia next to it is a perfect match. The trees above are Acer Bloodgood. I did a post on Fothergilla many years ago, and it is still difficult to source the plants. Well worth it if you can get hold of some. They hold their autumn colour for months, then have lovely flowers in spring.

The view from my computer. 

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Colour in Early May

Along with the huge big deciduous trees, I seem to have a lot of colour happening nearer the ground which is great - extends the seasonal interest to more than just big trees.

Camellia Yuletide - flowers early, and for months
Pomegranate - these look incredible at the moment, with the brightest yellow deciduous leaves. 
Good old citrus just keep on giving. Colour, fruit, and especially fragrance
Big old Pin Oak - the leaves are fantastic as mulch
The last of the dahlias - until we get the first autumn frost....
Chrysanthemums take over the colour when the dahlias expire. Can get quite sprawling, so nip tips out two-three times during spring and summer to make plant bushy. You get more flowers, too - and later. 
Camellias are so valuable in the garden - foliage and flowers. 
These Lilies have been sensational - and now the foliage glows as if the sun is shining just on them. Great value.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Ferns At The Waterfall

I am developing a new area down by our waterfall, and have been scavenging for ferns and trees in the pine tree forest on the farm. With much success! Some transfer more successfully than others. The Hen and Chicken Fern has been great, as have some of the tree ferns. Others seem to die back, but new growth is emerging. The first planting took place June 2017, so they are doing pretty well. I LOVE getting plants for free. There are very few trees I have bought for this area - just transferring seedlings and splitting plants from home.
Hen and Chicken Fern transfers really well

100% free plants in this pic, including trees from home - Ribbonwood , Cabbage Trees and Titoki

Splitting Rengarenga Lilies works really well. They need similar conditions as ferns.

Favourite view of Pongas at Otari-Wilton's Bush in Wellington. The dream for my own garden

Prickly Shield Ferns, Helleborus foetidissima (not native) with pine needle mulch.

Bank of Hen and Chicken Fern

Elsewhere at the waterfall - Rengarenga and Kawakawa - both need frost free and prefer shade. Go well with ferns.

Big ponga from another area at the waterfall
If you have access to seedling plants, then pot them up and grow them on (any time from Autumn to Spring), or try transferring them directly from one site to the other - best in the middle of winter. We are lucky that the birds drop seeds all over our garden, so all kinds of things come up. It takes more effort than going to a plant shop - but well worth it if you are on a budget. And infinitely more satisfying!

Wednesday, April 4, 2018


Ok - where did summer go? At least now we get seasonal changes happening in the garden to cheer us up as we look at winter fast approaching. The Dahlias and Japanese Anemones are carrying the perennial gardens through so far. Ash and oak trees are starting to turn.

The Orange and Purple garden is looking very feral, ready for a chop back next month 
And Mack just had to get in the action......

The burgundy shades still going strong out by the pool.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017


The lily season can last for 5 or 6 months if you grow many varieties. My earliest this year were these stunning Martagon Lilies. I get so much joy bringing them in their pots into the porch, where I can view their hourly changes as they pop open, then unfurl into backward arching petals. Love them. I have had them side by side with Cliveas this year. A great colour match.

The flowers 'pop' open straight, then curl backwards as they age.
Each flower lasts for well over a week.
Cliveas in two shades of orange