Sunday, 21 May 2017

From Geraniums to Genevieve

Delphiniums, foxgloves and Nicotiana mutabilis in the background - delightful!

Woken early by the upstairs neighbours, who appear to wear hobnail boots while walking around their flat (bastards!), I could not get back to sleep once I caught a glimpse of the blazing sunshine this morning.

So, I've had a helluva long, fruitful, sunny day spent entirely in the extensive gardens here at Dolores Delargo Towers! I moved a vast Knautia [it has only just bloomed - and although we bought it for the red border, it turns out to have pinky-mauve flowers; so now it's next to the Salvias where it won't clash].

In its place I planted out every one of our [two varieties of] red snapdragons (Antirrhinum) [dozens of the buggers; all in little pots, grown from seed] and Salvia coccina [a fairly unusual red variety - not that horrid little one so often seen as part of a municipal bedding display, incidentally - again, at least fifteen of them], Ammi majus and some of the Cleomes. I potted up some Nicotiana "Cuba", another mixed pot of fuchsias and petunias, and split up every last tray of seedlings to move the strongest on into pots. I was at it for at least eight hours! No wonder I am knackered. In between bouts of gardening, however, I did take the opportunity to just sit and "absorb" how stunning we have made it all look...

Speaking of stunning lookers [very dodgy link - again], today would have been the 90th birthday of the delightful Miss Kay Kendall (Mrs Rex Harrison), another of those ladies who lit up every screen upon which she appeared, but was taken away from us far too prematurely at just 32 (of leukaemia).

As is befitting of a day whose musical accompaniment has been most definitely of the "easy listening" variety, here she is in her crowning movie moment - shaking the audience with her jazz trumpet skills in Genevieve:

Kay Kendall (born Justine Kay Kendall McCarthy, 21st May 1927 – 6th September 1959)


  1. OOh! You have given me a double-delightful treat...Salvias and Kay Kendall.
    I have ONE salvia these days, but quite a few bits of it dotted here and there. No varietal name, but I have always likened it to a glass of claret.So that's what we call it.

    1. It might be "Van houttei"?

      Either way, salvias are particularly joyful for the fact that they flower right through to the last frosts in October or November here. And they're gorgeous. Jx

  2. What a beautiful blue delphinium! I can only hope that mine recovers from the slug/snail attack and flowers a little later in the season.

    1. We were very lucky that the delphiniums took full advantage of the cold, dry early Spring to put on strong and healthy shoots before the slugs ventured out when the weather warmed up - the hideous little creatures have taken whole trays of seedlings recently, and great chunks out of loads of other plants such as the Cardiocrinum and (their fave) Dahlias. I use the tried and tested method of crushing, stamping and chopping up any I catch, and rely upon coffee grounds around the most likely targets to deter the blighters, and upon nature to see off the rest (blackbirds and snails don't mix - and I know which I prefer!) Jx


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