Six-on-Saturday – It Begins Again

I’ve achieved so much already this year! Delighted to have nailed another bucket item. Yes, I’ve used “over at off” in a meaningful sentence. I’d been overthinking it for far too long; then it just happened.

This first Six-on-Saturday of 2021 has been thrown together, together with a concoction of trifle, Baileys Irish Cream and sprouts. Along with these basic ingredients, there’s been side-orders of rest, cycling, Kindling and Roberts-radioing. There’s been no gardening activity, apart from opening and closing the glasshouse and cold frame. All in all, it’s been typical of the festive days between Christmas and New Year’s Day. There’s a duplicate of this notion over at OffTheEdgeGardening. Thank you Gill.

I know about Twiglets

Importantly, I’ve been years trying to come up with a sentence using over at off. I’d been overthinking it for far too long; then it just happened. According to Reader’s Digest, life’s like that.

For more accounts of New Year garden activity from near and far timpeall an domhan, tap this link to visit The Propagator’s blog or check out @cavershamjj on Twitter. You’ll find plenty writers linking their Six on Saturday garden selection in the comments section. Here’s my first selection of 2021…

Primrose

Featured a few Saturdays ago last year, the primrose is a joy. At a time when there’s very little colour, I’m thrilled to have it. I’ve placed it on the windowsill within plain sight while I eat my boiled egg.

Jasmine

“Jasmine is one of the most seductive scents imaginable, and the stuff from Grasse is the finest in the world. In the little village where I collected that, the farmers won’t even let their nubile daughters walk through the fields when the flowers are ripe for fear they won’t be able to control themselves.”

“I can see why,” Evie murmured. The heavy fragrance was intoxicating, and she felt like someone entirely new.

Deanna Raybourn, Whisper of Jasmine

Pelargonium Vancouver

Long experience has taught me that people who do not like geraniums have something morally unsound about them. Sooner or later you will find them out; you will discover that they drink, or steal books, or speak sharply to cats. Never trust a man or a woman who is not passionately devoted to geraniums.

Beverley Nichols

Aurinia saxatilis Gold Ball

This is what happens when one forgets to trim the plant planda after flowering last spring! It looks bedraggled, and in no way similar to a ball. However, as it’s now coming into flower again, I’m reluctant to cut it back.

Rose

He who dares not grasp the thorn
Should never crave the rose.

Anne Bronte

Breakfast

Sun and soil and leaf and root, animal and stone, bone, human strength, human weakness,  all moved together, worked together, dictating one great pattern of  dependence. Each creature and plant, every person, fitted into its  place.
(Olivia Hawker, One for the Blackbird, One for the Crow)

Sin a bhfuil for this week. I’ll be back next week with more.

Personal Six

I add these simply in order to remember stuff. I’ll enjoy an (?) Eureka moment at some point in the future.

  • There was an hour of cycling on Christmas Day and two on Wran Day.
  • EU deal agreed with the UK. Both sides are claiming a win.
  • The Retro Trifle was a triumph.
  • We are back to Level 5 restrictions again. The disease is out of control. I’ll be looking for black market peat-free compost.
  • We purchased a Roberts Internet Radio, a fine machine indeed.
  • Baileys Irish Cream is dangerous. My planned cycling did not happen on Wednesday.
Athbhliain faoi mhaise.

Pádraig,

2nd January Eanair 2021.

Almost A Good Week

Thursday, 12th November 2020.

It has been a dry week, with the exception of one torrential downpour that passed our way on Tuesday night. The only trouble was that, as quoted by a cycling friend, it took nearly 24 hours to pass.

Saturday 7th

Bringing daffodils to my sister

Monday 9th

Dungarvan Bay

Tuesday 10th

Fuschia clear out on the rockery

Wednesday 11th

Indoor activities only

Thursday 12th

Geranium Vancouver in glasshouse

Pádraig.

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Six on Saturday – Depth of Field

Our lives, like our gardens, are made up of the crisp clear images we portray to the world, together with our darker blurred backgrounds.

Saturday, 25th July 2020.

Marylin vos Savant is very wise. She is an American magazine columnist, author, lecturer and playwright. She is known for many other things, one of which is that she rates as having the Guinness Book of Records highest IQ title. I am learning about her. She has said many wonderful and practical things. A selection of her various words of wisdom advises that you should:

  • be able to cite three good qualities of every relation or acquaintance you dislike
  • be able to decline a date so gracefully that the person isn’t embarrassed that he or she asked
  • be able to hiccup silently, or at least in a way not to alert neighbours of your situation. The first hiccup is an exception.

I have been practicing depth of field photography, and one of her quotable quotes makes the link I’m looking for.

The length of your life is less important than its depth.

Marilyn vos Savant

Enough of this in-depth introduction. Let’s get to the most important aspect of the situation deep down to the nub of the matter. Here I go again with my six this Saturday…

Uimhir a h-aon:

Buzy Lizzies and Privet stand out against the darker blurred background. Prizes for the first five who can identify the background plant on top right.

Uimhir a dó:

I do love grasses and this one has been catching my eye all summer with is tiny purplish tinge. There’s a lot going on behind.

Uimhir a trí:

The upside-down flower, Liatris spicata was featured on Instagram last week. Here it is again, one week on, opening further down. I watched a single busy bee stay on this plant for about twenty minutes a few days ago.

Uimhir a ceathar:

This is a rescue Acer. It had been in the neglected front garden. Now it is being tended carefully and the new growth has made the work worthwhile. Again, there are prizes on offer if you can identify the bike stand. Simple yes or no will suffice. The purpose of the bike-stand is two-fold as explained yesterday.

Uimhir a cúig:

The zonal pelargoniums are in focus amid the other varieties. Some dead-heading is required and these plants will need a long soak in the soak tray. After they’ve had a long soak in the soak tray, I will drip feed them from overhead. Likely, they will need to be checked individually because when potted plants are packed so tightly they suffer because of lack of air blowing through. All of these little tasks are on the early-next-week list. It’s Rule 42b for July and August.

Uimhir a sé:

Rosa ‘Korresia’ wafts its scent as I walk nearby. The flowers are short-lived, but new replacement buds quickly appear go tapaigh.

That’s my Six on Saturday. I hope you pick your favourite in the comments. Feel free also to win a prize or to outline any deep thoughts that come to mind.

Deep Saturday Thought

On the basis that depth of field photography highlights the foreground and blurs the background, would the image be interesting if the background was not there? Our lives, like our gardens, are made up of the crisp clear images we portray to the world, together with our darker blurred backgrounds.

Spoiler alert: The answer is 42. Don’t go there, unless you’re a fan of Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy.

For easier browsing, why not take a look at what my gardening friends are showing this Saturday by visiting The Propagator? You’ll find details about how to participate there too. And now it’s goodbye from me, but the story continues next week. Slán go fóill.

Pádraig.

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Drought & Waterlogged

Who would have thought that using this vibrant red pot would be a bad idea? Most of my pots are plastic with a few expensive terracotta in the mix, and all have proper drainage. I discovered the vibrant red while doing the twice-yearly shed cleanup. It looked good and I figured it would be a good candidate for the front of Geranium Corner. It was a good idea back in mid-June when there was a drought, because there was no drainage hole. I ndáiríre, there still is none. Unfortunately, when the wheelbarrow-load of rain dropped, I was so taken by how lush everything in the garden looked that I forgot to empty it. Today there’s several inches of water in it, and it is likely  the pelargonium is suffering and the leaves are showing the effects of prolonged water logging. But this is a hardy specimen and will recover.
I call this a geranium. I’m told that pelargonium is more correct. What do you call yours?

On a more philosophical note, I am reminded that my ENTIRE garden is a container, a very large 10×30 metre container. I have placed all my plants in this container over the past thirty years, and the heavens take care of the watering almost entirely. I am so grateful that the garden is naturally well watered.

The resident fairies seem to shy away from vibrant red, so I will leave the pot in place in recognition of Liverpool’s Premier League triumph after many years of adversity.