Allotment flower patch and current highlights

Friday, March 12, 2021


I've spent a few hours weeding at the allotment flower patch for the past couple of weekends. After the floods were drained and before the storms came back. There hadn't been much work carried out since round November, when I did a bit of clearing up. I do try to leave some spent debris for the wildlife to make homes in and eat so hadn't done much since then. The weeds somehow manage to continue growing over winter, no matter how nicely you leave the plot. C had kindly topped up the woodchip paths for me which gave the plot a lovely lift. Over winter it's so hard to believe how much things can grow in spring, filling the place with summer colour. There's precious little to see, so here's a reminder of what summer last year gave us.

As I say, I've started weeding and have now done around two thirds of the beds. I decided to document each bed and what (if anything) is showing some promise of things to come. 
You are forgiven for not seeing this through to the bitter end. 
The spring bulbs bed at the 'front' of the plot. Now has tiny narcissi in flower. Lots of tulip foliage showing (from years past, so many probably won't flower), there are allium foliage too. Approximately ten thousand honesty seeds have germinated. Might need to thin these.

The next bed has scabious in mostly which will need some thinning soon. 

I also added some gifted irises from another plotholder, plus some more baby scabious plants grown from dropped seed. I also have astrantia in there, which was unimpresive, plus mini sunflowers last year - so cute. 

Above, is the first dahlia bed. In an attempt to give it some spring interest I sowed wallflower seeds. I then forgot about that when tidying up and probably pulled most out before it figuring out. A small collection still growing.

Above, dahlia bed 2. Don't tell anyone but I am considering ripping up the path in the middle for another dahlia row. At the fence end 3 peonies live. This one is growing again. 

You can see what a state this one is in, tufts of grass and all... Rudbeckias and bergamot grow here. The perennial of both are looking intact. I have several annual rudbeckias sown in the greenhouse. Again, sadly no marmalade but I couldn't get hold of it.

The bed at the back (yes, there's a very thin wire fence behind it). The echinacea and zinnias grow here. Nothing good at all to see here. 
On the other side, the bed at the back has the giant schubertii alliums and sweet williams.
Lots to see although the clumps of sweet williams generally look a terrible state in early spring until more foliage and flower stems are produced. 

This bed is a puzzle. For the last 2 years it has been home to cornflowers and ammi. The ammi self seeded everywhere after it's first season. The bed, paths and surrounding beds were sown with seeds and it look a lot of weeding to ensure they didn't take over. Last year, I removed stems a little earlier but it seems there is not one seed growing. Nada. I'm almost certain that seeds would have been dropped. I had assumed I would never need to sow ammi seeds again! But here I am, sowing ammi seeds in an attempt to replenish my supply. I sowed cornflower too as only a handful are growing. I hope they grow or I'll have to fill it with something else. As the flowers were due to be mostly finished by mid to late summer I've added some lilies for additional interest. 

Into the double size monster bed. In the middle I planted 5 thalictrum which are supposed to get to approx 2m tall each year. I have 2 that grew last year to just over a foot tall (others perished). Conditions are in line with their preferences so I'm disappointed that they haven't performed. There are the old verbena bonariensis stems which should re-shoot alongside all the seed that should have been dropped from last years' flowers, I usually tuck sunflowers in here too. The delphinums are now shooting. Annual cosmos are planted in to the front of the bed. 

The poppy bed is also looking distinctly sparse. You can't move poppies easily as any root disturbance and they just give up. At the end I'm trying to establish some lupins. Last year pests destroyed most of them so I'm very pleased to see the return of one plant.

The last bed, back to the front of the plot. This one has been a dumping ground for oddments in truth. I have anemone in flower, only a few at a time. The clumps of greenery are (I hope) nigella. The ought to appear later along with the lilies.

Keep your fingers crossed for me that the flowers appear once more.

Take care,

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Sometimes I am sent items to feature as part of a post and these will be clearly mentioned as part of each post.Everything else is bought by myself. Any sponsored or collaboration posts will be clearly marked. Each post is my own content and all opinions are honest.