The merry-go-round that is my normal week has come back to Saturday again, phew!  Time for Six on Saturday.  Six things, in the garden, on a Saturday.  Could be anything: a good flower, a pest, a project, a success, a failure, funny shaped veg, anything at all.  Why not join in.

Here are my Six.

1 – Pelargonium.  I’m not sure what variety it is, I picked three plants up for pennies at B&Q the other week.  These went in the front garden, Border 9.  I’m quite taken with the light and very varigated leaf colouring, which I have not seen before.  What’s more, they’ve begun to flower. Bargain!


2 – Loosestrife.  I’ve got two clumps of this, originally one that I divided.  They are pretty venerable plants now, I think I’ve had them for 10 years or so.  It might be time for me to divide them again in the spring, come to think of it.  This is a plant that is normally found growing wild along a river or canal bank.  In fact, I now remember the nurseryman I bought it from saying out of the corner of his mouth “you could dig some up for free down by the Kennet“.  It dies back fully in the winter, coming back to life in the spring and quite quickly growing into a tall plant.  Around this time of year it is flowering away. This year is no different, but a little less enthusiastically than I recall in previous years.  I’m thinking it dislikes the dry conditions we have been having this year.


3 – Verbena bonariensis.  I heard this plant referred to as verbena bananarama the other day, and now find it difficult to recall the proper name.  This is a rather traditional cottage garden plant, but that’s nothing to be ashamed of.  It’s a tall plant, which might normally relegate it to the back of the border. As it’s so wispy, I’ve found it works very well as a frontish of border plant.  I just have three plants that I almost killed by accidentally digging them up when dormantlast year. They spent the rest of the winter and much of this spring in the greenhouse, recuperating from that indignity.  They are now resident in Border 2. I’m hoping/expecting them to self-seed liberally around the place.  I may collect some seed as an insurance policy, I’d like some more of this plant.

4 – Jasmine. Having moaned about this plant’s voracious spreading habit some time back, I feel obliged now to give it some credit for the flowers.  They are mostly done now, but the odd stem is still giving good service.  Frankly, this does not fully make up for the pain of keeping it in check each year.  But, since I’m stuck with the damn thing, I might as well enjoy the flowers.  I suppose.


5 – Nicotiana sylvestre – I’ve never grown these before. I got seeds this year and now have several decent sized plants in both the front and back gardens.  I don’t much like the foliage, which stinks, by the way. If rubbed, it is very reminiscent to me of British Rail waiting rooms circa 1980, which were an assault on all the senses but mainly reeked of stale cigaratte smoke.  The flowers though, are quite intriguing.  I’m told that they are highly perfumed, particularly on a sunny evening. I can’t say I’ve noticed this, but will keep sniffing when in the area.  The form of the flowers is what amuses me the most.  Pretty odd looking things.  If (when) I’m looking for border real estate next spring, these will be near the top of the list of potential victims.


6 – Miscanthus sinensis zebrinus.  Or zebra grass, for a lot shorter.  This is another plant I’ve had for about a decade.  I have divided it once, I think.  The resulting divisions sulked for two or three years, they didn’t seem to much like being moved.  This is a perennial grass, gets cut back in late winter.  I usually leave the dead stems over the winter period, as they provide a little interest.  It does not self-seed, or not that I can detect. Maybe three gardens down is full of it!  It gets to about 5 feet tall and for the last few years has been engaged in a running battle with the dwarf hop I featured a few Sixes ago.  I mainly like the plant for the foliage which has the eponymous stripes, but it also produces some impressive grassy flowers later in the summer.


That’s my Six, what are yours?  If you decide to join in this week, please just post a comment below with a link to your Six, and maybe a link back to this blog in your post.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend, I’ll be back next week with another Six on Saturday.