SixOnSaturday May 22nd. Mostly white.


SixOnSaturday time again. The weeks are flying by with daily new discoveries in the garden. Its hard to choose only six. In keeping with my theory that colour groups flower at the same time this week’s about white. For more contributions pop over to the host’s site

  1. Star of Bethlehem. This small bulb sends up grass-like foliage which dies off and/or is eaten by rabbits before the flower stalks appear.

2. Blue Camassia is having a very good year, and has sown very pretty white seedlings here and there.

3. Deutzia is playing her usual fanfare to summer. It’s very easy to make new plants by layering stems.

4. Viburnum plicatum ‘Mariesii’, slightly off kilter and needing a bit of a tidy up, flanked by a fluffy white azalea.

5. This yarrow foliage shines silvery white.

6. Not white at all! In contrast with my white shed, my flower baskets this year are petunias, red geraniums and lobelia. Not quite my usual froth of chamomile and cascading ivy but so pleasing!

There you have it! Have a wonderful week.


SixOnSaturday February 20th White and Waiting

It is that time of the year when finding six things is really difficult. Spring is waiting in the wings but yet it is snowing. It is still well below freezing at night. Texas and the US southern states are suffering from freaky unexplained winter weather. But nature is stirring, showing small signs. Go to the comments section of the Host for more signs of spring, from subtle to spectacular!

  • It is snowing again but the Witch hazel Pallida flowers are opening.
  • The Pussy Willow catkins shine silver in the occasional sunshine. It has been a long and cloudy winter.
  • Snowdrops begin to show white tips.
  • Little white root systems appeared on the Dahlia tubers in storage. They are now potted up and ready to go!
  • The Onion Grass is perking up and may be a useful salad garnish soon
  • Seedlings are sprouting on every available surface. It is almost time to Garden!

Have a wonderful week!

SixOnSaturday January 30th – Sundogs and Snow Ribbons


Time again for SixOnSaturday. Self explanatory really. Six garden related things on a Saturday. Visit the host’s blog for more contributions and comments:

  • Winter has arrived here in New England. We no longer need to obsess over the political situation and have moved on to our usual January pastime – obsessing over the weather. Here are a couple of unusual phenomena. First up, a vertical rainbow and it’s reflection. Known around here as a Sundog.

“Sundogs are colored spots of light that develop due to the refraction of light through ice crystals. They are located approximately 22 degrees either left, right, or both, from the sun, depending on where the ice crystals are present. The colors usually go from red closest to the sun, out to blue on the outside of the sundog. Sundogs are also known as mock suns or parhelia, which means “with the sun”

  • Ice crystals are definitely present…we expect snow and ice every day for the next week. I was lucky to see these exquisite Snow Ribbons before they melted and fell to earth.
  • Today’s high temp is expected to be 19 degrees. The low is 7 F. That is around minus 14C. Indoor gardening is definitely on the agenda. This week I sowed chillies, onions and leeks. I’ve had trouble finding the seed varieties I want this year. Some seed companies have had to close their websites due to the increased demand. So I won’t be growing Ailsa Craig onions, but trying a new one ‘Globo’. It looks exactly like Ailsa Craig…..
  • I germinate my seedlings on top of my big old fashioned cast iron radiators. that’s one good reason to appreciate the cold weather – the pipes are always hot!
  • It is a good time to stay at home and cook. Pickled beets are on the menu. These are Chioggia and Touchstone Gold with a few dark Detroit beets. From last year’s garden, they were starting to sprout a bit in their chilly basement. They will be boiled and pickled in Balsamic vinegar.
  • I will also need to address my garlic. The stored bulbs are starting to sprout. Usually I roast them after removing the bitter sprouts but it does stink up the house. I’m thinking of shoving them in the freezer until I can roast them outside – not sure how garlic freezes but nothing ventured…..

Hope everyone has a wonderful week of gardening. Stay safe and warm!

SixOnSaturday October 31st. A Spooky Surprise!

  1. Dawn, the day before. Very calm. Sumac, witch hazel and red-twig dogwood at full colour. Norway maples still wearing their green.

2. 24 hours later. Cercis canadiensis, still with full lemon and lime foliage, bowed under heavy wet snow. “There’ll be no snow at the coast”, they said….

3. It is very pretty. Not really what you’d call a storm, not windy or too frigid. It will probably be gone by tomorrow. The car will have to be cleared off. The tin man is shivering and the pumpkin wears a white beret.

4. Thankfully the Winter herb garden was moved inside the porch earlier in the week as night temps dropped. Bay, Lemon Verbena and Yerba Buena for hot tea and some pelargoniums for flowers.

5. I had gathered a spooky purple bouquet of Dahlia, Hydrangea and Beautyberry. That will be the end of the Dahlias. I’m not digging them up this year as they are not my favourite flower. This purple one is impressive in size and vigour and knowing my luck it will survive the winter.

6. In preparation for Spring I had received a shipment….narcissus, tulips, fritillaries, crocus and alliums.

Finally, apologies to those of you waiting for Fothergilla sprouts! We expect a nice sunny 1st week of November in which I should be able to get all these bulbs planted and also fill your order!

Happy Halloween and enjoy the October Blue Moon!

SixOnSaturday July 4th. Independence Day.

Six things from the garden on a Saturday. Hosted by the Propagator, in the comments section of whose blog more sixes from around the gardening globe may be found.

1. Red. The first Benarys Giant zinnias are opening in various shades of red. Our own little fireworks!20200703_16105220200703_160858

2. Also at the red party, a Snapdragon that over wintered.20200703_160730_Burst01

3. White cotton mesh curtains protecting the Blueberry crop. No blueberry pie for the 4th of July this year, they’re not ripe yet.20200703_161001

4. Red, White & Blue lychnis coronaria and Hydrangea Blue Billow, a star spangled combo.20200703_161243

5. White and blue all American mopheads.20200703_161128

6. Blue. Because its my favourite colour and also because I’m feeling blue.20200703_160801

In sharing these 6 I’m trying to recall the reasons for being here in this broken and fragile country. Less than 4 years ago there was a leader with strength and pride and hope. And compassion. I’d like that ‘hopey changy thing’ back asap.


In a vase on Monday June 15th. Morning and Evening.

The peonies and roses are spectacular this year. In celebration, and as a memoir to my ex-career in fashion design here are 2 colourways of the same bouquet. Using the same vase for both.

A) Sarah Bernhardt peonies with Rosa Zephirine Drouhin and Nigella. An old copper sundial completes the scene.20200614_110059

B). Peony Moonstone, Rosa Mme Plantier, white daisies and Anemone Sylvestris sit with a stone votive. The candle is not yet lit. Evenings come late in June.20200610_133214

The vase is a silly little 2 handled urn. I like white vases.

Thank you to Cathy for hosting.


In a vase on Monday

Memorial Day dawns, white with fog.

The day is cold and cloudy. I don’t mind. I’m holding on to spring. By next week the white flowers will fade and the summer colours of peony, rose and clematis will predominate.

I’m picking flowers for our first party since lockdown. Just 4 people including us. Eating outside.

The flowers are viburnum opulus, white Deutzia and narcissus Actea. Shades of white.20200525_095834

The vase is a yard sale find, it’s made of something like pyrex and is unbreakable. Probably a good thing. I’m sure there’ll be wine.20200525_095919 Happy long weekend wherever you are!

SixOnSaturday May 23rd. A-May-zing.

This week the garden came back to life. The sun shone, the trees greened up. Baby birds are fluttering everywhere, crash landing into evergreens that are soft with new growth. The air is heady with the scent of lilac and bluebells. It is easy to find six wonders this week.

1. Viburnum plicatum Mariesii. Everyone has a flower or plant in my garden. She is for my mother, always the centre of attention when she’s in full swing.20200522_134343

2. Azalea no name white. Getting ready to knock your socks off.20200522_134431

3. Unfurling hostas.20200522_13471820200522_140230

4. Strawberries to be.20200522_134643

5. The pheasants eye narcissus and forget me nots still going strong.20200522_134438

6. Garlic on parade. One row is from nice large cloves carefully selected from the largest bulbs. The other is from odds and ends and bulbs that I wasn’t sure were garlic. Can you tell which row was which? I can’t!20200522_134535

This week the weather has been cool and sunny. I’ve pulled out hundreds of Jerusalem artichokes and a massive pile of garlic mustard that is headed for the compost dump. Here’s the gang of tender veg and flowers waiting to be planted next week.20200522_135024

In other news my long awaitwd haircut is happening on Tuesday! Thank you once again to our host. More offerings can be found in the comments section of his post.


SixOnSaturday May 9th. White and wild.

Six white things from the garden on a Saturday. Hosted by the Propagator. Check out the comments section of the blog to see gardens around the world

1. Daisy. A gift in memory of our dear old beagle who passed away a few weeks ago. A lovely gesture and a fine plant. 20200429_183925

2. Amelanchier is blooming. I planted this one but there are lots of native wildlings in the area.20200507_103646

3. Fern fronds unfurling. These are cinnamon fern,20200502_111340and these are Christmas fern.20200502_111330

4. The Viburnum burkwoodii has opened its heavily scented pompoms.20200507_103209

5. Feathers. A trail of fluffy whiteness leading into the woods. The feathers are large and downy. A waterbird of some sort I think. A small drama took place and no-one was there.20200507_103352

6. I leave you with a wall of garlic mustard. Thousands of plants. I will rip them out several times this year and next spring they’ll be back.20200507_103151~2

And also with this thought. It is snowing. Again. In May. Till next week….stay safe. Better times will come.

SixOnSaturday March 21st. Simply Spring.

It’s finally here. The weather and the calendar are in synch. Six things in the garden on a Saturday.

1. Pushkinia and royal blue squill propagate and spread freely, frothing over stone walls into my so-called lawn.


2. Magnolia buds are popping. For some reason the goldfinches like to rip off the fuzzy sepals and fling them to the ground.20200320_140934

3. Chives will feature in salads and scones.20200313_155158~2

4. Hellebores have had an easy winter.


5.Daffodils. Only the tiniest miniatures are flowering yet. Less than 6 inches tall.20200320_141238

6. This clump of white Crocus has lasted longer than the snowdrops it sits with. Perfect gleaming white.20200313_155514~2

Six happy things in a very uncertain world. Stay safe and spend some time with other gardeners on