Saturday, 2 May 2020

Giving In, Getting Curried, Blessed Rain

Six on Saturday is a weekly diary hosted by The Propagator & contributed to by gardeners all over the world.  For links to other SoS blogs, check out Mr P's comments & the Twitter hashtag, #SixOnSaturday.

The tap connector broke off inside the hose during our recent dry spell.

Obviously, I can't walk into a store with the broken bit & get it replaced.

We measured in imperial & metric, emailed photos & got back false assurances that THIS connector would fit.  Repeatedly.

It rained during the wait for Connector #5 to arrive.  I was a little bit happy.

1.  Good morning!

Ah, that familiar morning greeting at this time of year . . .

. . . followed by the twice daily shuffle to facilitate hardening off.

2.  Best Britches.

I love, love, love bear's breeches, but as our shady borders are so dark, chose a variegated one destined to have pink flowers - White Water, perhaps?

It didn't bloom last year & Mr P warned that his never did.  Love the foliage anyway, as it does brighten up that dark little corner.  Hopefully it gets taller, even if it doesn't bloom.

3.  Giving in.

Last summer, our first here, the back garden got so hot, the house doors wouldn't close.  Plants sizzled that should never sizzle in the UK.  We planted climbers over every possible surface, but a nice tree was needed.

I resisted that idea because we rent, but already the back garden feels like the US south.  The best place for a tree is where the beehive composter sat, giving some shade while leaving the majority of the garden to sunbathe.

I planted an Empress Tree, one of 4 grown from seed collected in a local park.  They're the fastest growing hardwood tree there is, which tipped me in its favour.  At the moment, it's 12" tall, & shall be measured frequently to see if it grows as fast as they say.

You may've noticed the curry plants next to the beehive's original spot.  I've spent days smelling of curry, thanks to the cardigan I wore during the move.  It's been fabulous.

4.  New home.

The beehive is used for storing trugs & plastic bottles of stuff, thus easily relocated.  The dead sticks in front are a fuchsia dug up for a gardening friend who got the virus (she recovered).  The fuchsia's yet to let me know if it survived being replanted.

Behind, grows the 'Fox Meadow' - essentially 3 very tall plants in a very small area.

5.  Datura or Rude Becky?

Back in March, I knew I'd remember which seed got planted in the little square pot & which in the little round pot.  Being the cognitive giant that I am, I did not.

Only one germinated.  So if you please, is it Datura or Rude Becky?  Here's the top of the leaves . . .

. . . and here's undeneath.

I'm leaning toward Datura.  What say ye?

6.  Sparaxis.

This little fella really surprised me by blooming.  Not a one of his friends looks close to opening yet.

These plants give more than they expect back.  Stick 'em in the ground & they just get on with it, in colours to knock your socks off.  My kinda plant.  If only they lasted longer!


That's it for this week.

Thanks so much for stopping by.  Hope to see you again soon.

Here's looking at you.


  1. Lovely variety of colours......leaves, storage beehive, oh and flowers! Interesting Six-on-Saturday.

  2. Datura maybe? I love the smell of curry plant. I don't have one but there's unusually some lurking in a National Trust garden somewhere. The beehive store is very nice indeed. For reasons unknown the pretty Sparaxis has made me think of the 'I'm Spartacus' scene only with flowers and higher pitched voices. The way my mind works worries me sometimes.

    1. The beehive was originally our composter, which meant relying heavily on the council's green bin. Once we got a hot bin, the beehive changes purposes. As to 'unusually', it made total sense to me, so there you go.

  3. I would think Datura as well. I'd never heard of an Empress Tree so looked it up. One site says it's the fastest growing tree in the world, non invasive, another site says it's horribly invasive ad marching across Europe. Keep your measuring tape handy!

    1. The Empress seeds come in a pod about the size of a 50p & were used as packing in the shipping industry. These pods were dumped & of course, grew. I collected pods in our local park & had a surprisingly high germination rate, but lost over half the seedlings because I left the babies outside over winter. My plan, should it bloom during my tenancy, would be to collect & compost the pods. Other folk pollard the trees for the foliage, doing away w/the flowers altogether. But the flowers are gorgeous, so . . .

  4. For me, it's a datura, mine is at the same stage and looks a lot like yours.
    About paulownia, when did you sow your seeds? I also sowed it this winter and I have 2 that are not as tall as yours.
    I can't wait to see them grow. It seems to take off when it measures more than 30 cm

    1. The empress is 2 yrs old. I left her outside the first winter & she died back (also lost about half the seedlings in total) Last winter, I left her in the potting shed & she didn't drop her leaves at all. 2 other ones that I did leave outside did lose all their leaves but have come back from the start, so if you don't want a large tree, you could cut to the ground (Jim's suggestion) or later pollard it, but no flowers that way. Is it a race? (Goes to get the tape measure.)

  5. I'm with everyone else - Datura. Looks very solanum family. Rebecca is my sister's name so Rude Becky is my sister when she's in a bad mood with me. I'm with you on the Spraxis - superb flower but all too fleeting.

    1. Well, I hope your Becky isn't rude very often (altho it's a fantastic plant, too, now that I think about it).

  6. It’s actually raining here properly now for the first time in weeks. Proper rain!!!! Coming from the sky. I am a happy man. Nothing wrong with smelling like curry for days. Hope O find you week today Lora.

    1. Gardeners & ducks, how we love our rain. Didn't understand your last sentence, tho.

  7. I’m glad you've had some rain - having a non-functioning hose during a prolonged dry spell isn’t ideal.

    I’m doing that shuffle x 2 as well - I don’t mind telling you, I’ll be glad when it’s over. I like the containers that you have your small pots in - I must try to find something like that to lift my small pots out. At the moment we’re only putting out larger pots.

    I don't know what Datura looks like, but having just potted up many Rudbeckia seedlings this week, I don't think it's one of those.

    1. Yes, Rudbeckia has more rounded leaves, but I wanted to make sure, as I'd assumed the 'beckia would germinate easier than the datura. The plastic boxes have lids, so can be used as mini greenhouses &, if needed, be stack over night when the plants are still small.

  8. I'm a bit late to the party this week, but wanted to leave a comment to say how pretty your storage bee hive is with its candy coloured stripes.

    1. I've not made it through a quarter of the SoSers this week, so thanks for showing up! Some weeks, it ain't easy.