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Friday, 24 February 2017

Time to Shine

There was much excitement surrounding last week's blog when we were all starting to notice signs of life in our flower beds, borders and pots. Since last Friday, much has developed and we are being exposed to even more splendour and colour.

Earlier this week I conducted a poll on our Twitter page to determine the most popular spring flowering bloom. Daffodil won hands down, receiving a huge 41% of the vote. Would you agree with this or do your preferences lie elsewhere?

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Narcissus Double Smiles

Beautiful Disaster 

The official and botanical name for a Daffodil is 'Narcissus'.

Some of you may be familiar with the well-known Greek Myth about a fine and handsome young man named Narcissus. Narcissus was said to have been granted permanent and immortal good looks by the Gods, (What a shame eh?) although was forbidden to admire his own reflection.

One day, Narcissus was discovered hunting in the woods by a young lady named Echo. He took her breathe away and she fell in love instantly. Unfortunately Echo's advances were starkly rejected, causing ultimate heartbreak. Her incessant pining made all but her voice fade.

The goddess Nemesis was outraged and took it upon herself to take revenge. She lured Narcissus to a glistening lake where he was unable to resist his own reflection. As he sat admiring his perfectly formed face, he gradually started to disappear from sight and suffered the same fate as poor Echo.

In his place sprung a glorious golden flower supported by divine lance-shaped leaves.

Narcissus was re-born.




Garden Favourites

Over many hundreds of years on this earth, Daffodils have become one of the best-loved garden blooms and we can thank the Romans for introducing them into the British landscape.

There are more varieties of  this flower than we realise, yet they all have the same effect on our behaviour. They have this incredible ability to etch the largest of grins to one's face, with their very own infectious and cheerful disposition.




Varieties:
From top left to right: Lingerie, Erlicheer, Barrett Browning
From mid left to right: Jetfire, Sinopel, Sunny Girlfriend
From bottom left to right: Trepolo, Double Smiles, Pipit


Easy Maintenance

Daffodils are low maintenance once in bloom. They should be watered when very little rainfall has occurred and when the soil becomes dry to the touch. As your flowers fade, it is recommended that you deadhead plants, allowing the foliage to remain for at least 6 weeks. Make sure that you leave Daffodils in place until they completely die off as they will need to use their foliage to store energy for the following year. You may remove dead plants by cutting them at the base or gently twisting and pulling the leaves.

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It is truly amazing the difference in colour, shape, form and size offered by this one particular genus. Do you have a favourite variety? What have you planted in your own garden?

I am yet to meet an individual who has a bad word to say against these bold and brazen spring beauties. I love the atmospheric buzz that they bring to people after a perpetually long and dank winter.

I hope that in the forthcoming few days we can spot yet more Daffs in bud and bloom.

Please feel free to share any photographs whilst on your travels.

Have a fantastic weekend!
becky@hayloftplants.co.uk












Friday, 17 February 2017

Pleasant Surprises

I am becoming impatient.

Impatient for impending spring sunshine and coinciding flurries of fresh-faced blooms. I want to peel back the dull winter layer in the hope that it might reveal something a little more sun-saturated and pleasant.

We have been treated by snippets of cloudless blue skies this week, a teasing reminder that winter is slowly being pushed aside. The trouble with newfound sunshine is that it has only fueled my desire to book a holiday - a remote island perhaps - complete with palm trees and cocktails. I am soon brought back down to earth when rattling coppers greet me on opening my purse - never mind! A girl can dream!

A fortnight ago I was able to spend a Sunday afternoon in the garden with very little life exposed at the time. It appears as though my flower beds have been injected with some sort of miracle grow serum within this time and I am so excited to see more signs of life and colour in the garden.


Hellebores - YAY! 

A glorious cluster of pink Hellebores. The foliage is looking a little worse for wear unfortunately, appearing as though it has been mauled by an army of slugs - I will need to investigate this further.  GRRR

I am so happy to see these in the garden - a true winter blooming beauty, providing a little ray of sunshine on the dullest of days!



First sign of snowdrops



This little gem was hidden away out of immediate sight, sitting happily next to one of the larger shrubs in the corner of the garden.

It was only when I scoured the border closely that this bright lantern-like bloom caught my gaze and I was thrilled to finally see one in my own garden.

This illuminating flower is truly one of the most sought after blooms at this time of year - when we see one, it is hard to stop that smile from spreading across one's face.

I hope I can spot some more of these on the weekend when I try to eliminate some of those pesky weeds that have reared their ugly heads again.

I wish I had taken more pictures - There are lots of little clusters much like this, scattered around the garden from when I planted an abundance of bulbs (and I mean an abundance- oops)

I went a little mad this year as I really wanted to fill this blank canvas of a flower bed with a multitude of blooms in an array of colour, shapes and sizes.

Hopefully in the next few weeks I should expect to see Allium, Daffodils, Hyacinthus, Tulips, Crocus and Puschkinia.

I will take more pictures over the coming weeks to show you how they have progressed! I am hoping that some of my pots will come to life shortly too!



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What is growing in your garden at the moment? Let me know what you have discovered in your beds and borders. Which spring bulbs are you expecting to see this year?

Have a wonderful weekend! I hear the weather is warming up!


becky@hayloftplants.co.uk