Blimey Charlie, September already.  Autumn according to some. Myself, I’m in denial. Leaves falling? Pah. La la la not listening.  Still summer in my garden.  Time for another Six on Saturday.  Six things, in the garden, on a Saturday.  Could be anything.  A tool, a project, a daunting job, a great plant, interesting foliage, anything at all.  Why not join in?

Here are my Six.

1. Houttuynia?  Who-knows-ya, more like. I bought a few of these years ago. I could not for the life of me remember what they were called but spotted a very similar plant in my local garden centre last weekend. I can’t be 100% certain but in the absence of a better answer I’m going with houttuynia. Each year they pop up, bringing a bit of low colour to a shady border, each year a few more of them. They don’t get more than 20cm high and I’ve never seen them flower, but I like the variation in leaf colour.

2. Dwarf hop – second bite of the Six on Saturday cherry for this plant. It has fully covered a fence panel since April, that’s it’s main job in life. The flower cones are forming now. I took a few teeny divisions earlier in the year. Through a combination of neglect and the trials and tribulations of propagating, I lost all but one of them which I found clinging to life in a corner of the greenhouse. If it survives the winter I will plant it on the fenceline in Border 2.

3. Rhus typhina, or stags horn sumac.  This tree/shrub is actually in my neighbour’s garden, and therefore what the designers would call “borrowed landscape”.  It is just beginning to turn, this autumn (late summer!) leaf colour is it’s only redeeming feature in my humble opinion.  It eventualy goes quite a vivid red/orange colour before dropping it’s leaves. The bare branches, have a fuzzy covering like a deer’s antlers. Hence the common name, I imagine.  I usually hack back the branches overhanging my fence as it’s quite a size now and turns that corner into an even more shady area. I forgot to do it this year, it’s got quite unruly.

4.  Osteospurmum var unk. I bought this 5 or 6 weeks ago for 50p from the pity bench in B&Q. It was a dried up mess with no flowers. I gave it a trim, fed and watered it and now it’s a good looking plant with some flowers. Should be good next year.

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5. Weigela var unk. This shrub is in many respects a poor example of the breed. It is in the front garden, mostly overwhelmed by the neighbouring spirea bush, which has got very large. Like its counterpart in the back garden, this weigela has not been pruned well so it has got very leggy.  I mention it now because it is flowering like mad. I’m sure it flowered earlier in the year, so I’m surprised it’s going again.

6. Irrigation system. Over the years I’ve built up an irrigation system using hozelock parts or compatible systems. It’s 13mm piping for the main water delivery then thinner 6mm pipes for the drippers. It’s a bit of a Heath Robinson arrangement but it works. I am running two timers at the moment, one for the front garden and one for the pots on the patio. The other two taps on this 4-way manifold are connected to hoses. The green one goes to a hose reel that I use for the main garden and the yellow one is connected via a long length of hose to the greenhouse tap. I have grand plans to install a more robust manifold system next year, with the aim of giving me more outlets and timers, and therefore more control and coverage. I particularly want to put a misting unit in the greenhouse. We shall see.

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That’s my Six for this week, what’s are yours? If you’d like to join in, please just leave a comment below with a link to your post, and maybe add a link back to this blog in yours. If you don’t have a blog and feel left out, we discovered recently that you can use Facebook in much the same way, just give the link to your Facebook article (not your profile). Come on in!

I’ll be back next week with another Six.

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