This has been a week of great highs and lows in the garden. The torrential rain earlier in the week brought a real low, as I saw my first roses collapse under the weight of water that pounded them for over 24 hours. If I had any doubts about the value of the peony supports that I bought earlier in the year they were dispelled this week – miraculously all my peonies survived bedraggled but still standing. I also remembered to support my delphiniums this year, so they too survived the drenching. Sadly there was nothing I could do to save the roses – on the bright side they had only just started to flower so there are still plenty of buds to open.
The high this week has come from the beautiful peonies that are opening all over the garden. I will photograph them and show them to you in their uncut state later this week. For tonight I had a surfeit of Sarah Bernhardt flowers ready in the Cutting Garden which just had to be used!
I have arranged them on short stems n the Sarah Raven glass trough I was given for my birthday. There was no need for any additional support – the flowers are so big they easily filled the space and support each other.
The arrangement fits perfectly on the mantel in the dining room and has filled the room with a delicious scent.
A mature Sarah Bernhardt peony can produce around 40 blooms in a season. I think my two 3 year old specimens had about 15 blooms each this year, so they have a long way to go to maturity.
Sarah Bernhardt is also very long lasting in a vase. If you cut the blooms just as they start to open they should easily last a week or longer.
There is so much going on in the garden right now and so many jobs I need to finish that I must apologise for not answering your comments last week or keeping up with reading your lovely blogs. I have been almost switched off from my technology as I have rushed about the garden planting out half hardy annuals and dahlias from the greenhouse, staking, weeding and tying in perennials around the borders and sowing seeds in the vegetable garden. I often find myself out until dusk in June, making very quick suppers and realising very late in the day that I have not finished the laundry or unloaded the dishwasher!
Today I have been planting up the pots along the Terrace with summer bedding. I have plenty more planting out planned for the week after which I will feel like I have ‘finished’ the garden for the summer. Emptying the greenhouse and cold frames always feels like something of a milestone and marks the start of the quieter summer months when I can concentrate on deadheading, weeding and watering and hopefully enjoying the garden. June, however, also marks the start of the box trimming season and is the month when I sow my biennial seeds for next year, so there will still be plenty to do!
I wil be back tomorrow with more peonies in my ‘Vase On Monday’.