Welcome to this weeks In A Vase On Monday when I am linking up with Cathy at Rambling In The Garden to produce a vase (or this week a bottle) of flowers from my garden.
As I hinted yesterday I have found it very difficult to choose what to put in my vase today. My heart is still with the snowdrops and hellebores – their season feels all too short. All around me, however, other beauties are bursting into flower and tempting me away into spring.
For this week, after much deliberation, I have finally opted to go with spring. My first camellia flowers are just opening and my favourite spring anemones have made their beautiful appearance. Spring is rapidly taking over my winter garden whether I am ready or not!
The first bottle in this trio is filled with the beautiful blue anemone Mr Fokker, bought from the Sarah Raven catalogue and planted in autumn 2012. This clump flowered beautifully last year and the early flowers this year bode well for another good season. Once planted anemones are a very easy spring flower. Their fresh green leaves start growing in the autumn and provide greenery throughout the winter. Once they start to flower regular deadheading should result in them continuing to produce until the warmer weather sends them retreating underground for the summer.
I like to pick anemones before the flower is fully open. They are quite delicate and soon look tatty if left on the plant too long. Picked in bud they will open indoors in a day or two and reveal their full beauty. The anemones here were picked this morning in full flower, but the flowers are so fresh I think they will last for a few days yet.
My second bottle contains a very beautiful camellia that I could not resist picking. This pale pink double looks very much like a peony or a rose and is far more beautiful in real life than in the image I have captured.
This camellia is called Debbie and is new to me this spring. I have a collection of camellias that I grow in pots against a shaded wall at the front of the house. Camellias really thrive in acid soil which we do not have in the garden, so large pots filled with ericaceous compost have provided the answer. Growing against the house wall they are protected from the worst of the winter weather. I keep them well watered and feed them twice a year and they seem very happy. Debbie is currently by the back door, but she will be moved to a larger pot against the front wall as soon as she has stopped flowering.
This beautiful anemone is called Sylphide and is another Sarah Raven purchase. At a time when yellow seems to rule the world it is lovely to see these stunning pink flowers in the spring border.
I grow most of my spring bulbs and hellebores together in a border that leads down to the Woodland Walk. The Spring Garden seems as good a name as any for this border. The season starts with Helleborus Niger (the Christmas Rose) and the white flowered sarcococca (Christmas Box). In January the snowdrops and iris reticulata join in the show, followed by crocus, the first narcissi Tete a Tete, muscari and the anemones. Still to come are the white flowered narcissi Thalia and a selection of shrubs including the cascading spirea Arguta, viburnum opulus roseum (the snowball tree), the fabulously scented viburnum carlcephalum and viburnum bodnantense Dawn. The border also includes a young laburnum tree, a flowering cherry, a prunus serrula and a lilac tree.
I am very happy with my little bottles in their final position on the bathroom windowsill.
I am keeping my fingers crossed for some spring like weather later this week and I will be working hard to catch up with jobs that I am behind on following my winter bug. I hope to be back mid week with Garden Jobs to Do This Week – a post I have had to miss for the last two weeks as I have not been doing many jobs!
Please do pop over to Cathy’s blog to see what she and the others have made this week.