Mar. 25th, 2012

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It's another beautiful day out there, and the world seems to be flitting blithely past my front door on two wheels.

And I'm stuck in here, coughing, sniffling, and popping mega-Strepsils like smarties [NB. If you wonder what my idea of a mega-Strepsil is, it's one of those hideous pale blue ones for blocked nose & sore throat combos.  It appears to embody Pestilence, and tastes vile.  The consumption of these vile things is, however, chipping gradually away at my blocked sinuses.]

All in all, bleaugh.  In case you hadn't guessed, I decided against riding my bicycle today.  So I'm crabbit...

I have, however, been gardening.  I pruned a rose, did some weeding, dissected some more sweet peas, potted on a begonia, trimmed an excitable pelargonium, planted some gladiolii and my nice new salmon pink primula, and lost my trowel.  Not my archaeological trowel, which I lost years ago and haven't yet got around to replacing, but my garden trowel, which - considering what time of year it is - is a matter of slightly more concern.

Our current ladybird census stands at 26.  All seven spot, and not a single harlequin in sight.  Phew.

So rather than posting something intellectual, I thought I'd post some plant porn.  I believe [ profile] ingaborg is on a quest for shade-loving plants just now, so I decided I'd dedicate a post to the noble brunnera

Here's the Dawson's White I managed to wheedle out of J yesterday:-

For those of you who are unfamiliar with brunnera, once the forget-me-not like flowers finish, the leaves just get bigger, and bigger, and bigger.  It's a wonderful ground-cover plant for damp shady places (I'm hoping the spot I chose for this one won't be too sunny...), its only drawback being that it makes a tasty well-loved snack for slugs and snails.  Once they get established they can hold their own against attack, but for the first year or two, they're vulnerable, the variegated ones especially so.  I've tried 'Jack Frost' before, and been unsuccessful both times - I'm hoping this plant'll be big enough to cope under prolonged slug attack.

This is my established brunnera - I can't remember what the variety is, though the name 'Looking Glass' seems to ring a bell:-

In this variety, the leaves are lightly spotted around the edges with silver.  It's been a great addition to the garden, and it's a plant I'd wholeheartedly recommend to anyone.

And lastly, daffies.  Because they're at their best at the moment, and I like them!

Incidentally, whatever has happened to the noble senetti??  They've been available on mail order sporadically through the years, and they were starting to get popular in the garden centres a while back, and now they've just vanished.  I saw a nice selection on sale at the nursery yesterday, but at eight quid each, they were more than I was willing to pay.  I just can't understand why they aren't more popular - they liven up any container at this time of year and with the proper treatment they're repeat flowering, too.

The garden just isn't the same without them.


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