June 21, 2012

Package from Netherlands

      In the end of last season I was saying to myself that there will be no more hosta orders in 2012... But there are so many great varieties out there that I don't have in my garden yet. Of course, I couldn't resist and placed an order for 8 more hostas to my favorite hosta vendor Hostaworld. I decided to add some larger varieties to my collection such as golden medium to large 'Dawn's Early Light' bred by Olga Petryszyn, golden large with piecrusted edges 'Dancing queen', blue large 'Fleet Week' with rippled edges, golden margined medium to large upright 'Alex Summers', large arching 'Arc de Triomphe', 'Lakeside Prophecy Fulfilled' - a white edged sport of 'Lakeside Prophecy' with heavily corrugated leaves, 'Frisian Pride' - a recent introduction of Bate Aukema from Netherlands and 'Lakeside Paisley Print' - medium with wavy leaves with a "feather" pattern of the narrow creamy center. Plants arrived in a perfect condition and look stunning. Tomorrow they will be planted in their permanent or almost permanent locations.

June 12, 2012

Worth the patience

     Rhododendron hybrid 'Kokardia' we have planted in the garden 3 years ago and this year it finally got ready to bloom. I was afraid that we'd miss the flowering since we left for vacation right before the opening of the first flower. But due to a chilly and rainy weather during the first week of June the flowering slowed down and we arrived in a perfect time to see it in its full power. It was definitely worth to wait for 3 years to see the show. Clusters of large purple-pink flowers with a prominent wine red blotch. The plant itself is neat and vigorous with glossy dark-green leaves. This hybrid was raised by the famous German breeder Hans Hachmann.

June 6, 2012

Sanssouci park and Botanical garden in Potsdam

     Today we visited magnificent park Sanssouci in Potsdam. This park is a great example of finest landscaping work. Here comes a selection of pictures taken by Björn.

Part of the vineyard terracing

One of the huge purple beech trees

Muses and the greenery

Many palm and citrus trees are grown in pots

     Botanical garden of Potsdam is situated right next to the park so we used an opportunity to check it out as well.

     Although I'm not in to rock gardening I was impressed by the large alpine garden.

     I liked a lot this hosta and Astilbe planting along a stream. Hostas are absolutely happy in such conditions - light shadow and plenty of water accessible for their roots.

     This relative of Rhododendrons Kalmia latifolia caught up my attention with its graceful flowers.

     In my opinion Adiantum pedatum is the most beautiful garden fern. This gorgeous specimen is called Adiantum pedatum var. aleuticum. It has blue-green color and slightly different shape of pinnae than Adiantum pedatum.

     Dahlia 'Bishop of Llandaff' is planted along the water cascade.

June 1, 2012

Dahlia stake forest

    Right now dahlia garden looks like a forest of stakes. I always put stakes before planting dahlias. It's easier for me to position each plant in the bed when all stakes are in place.

    So for a few weeks dahlia bed looks a bit weird, but dahlias are growing vigorously, and stakes will be hidden behind the lush foliage very soon.

May 28, 2012

Dahlia update

    All dahlias are planted. This year I had very narrow time window to plant everything and it was a bit stressful. But now it's done and I got time to update my collection catalog. There are about 180 plants of 83 varieties planted in the garden this year. Some are new for the collection. Some I liked so much that they were kept since last year. Some varieties are out of the garden since they didn't fit my taste or were lost during winter storage.
    Among newly acquired dahlias are several varieties originating from France. Some of them are low growing varieties suitable for planting in pots. Here is a preview of these varieties.

Picture borrowed from Dahliafrance

Avalanche Rose
Picture borrowed from Delbard Direct

Citron Fraise
Picture borrowed from Delbard Direct

Picture borrowed from Delbard Direct

French Cancan
Picture borrowed from Delbard Direct

Puerta del Sol
Picture borrowed from Delbard Direct

Picture borrowed from Dahliafrance

May 23, 2012

Black Tulips

     The latest of my tulips are in full bloom now. Two of them have the word 'Black' in their name. 'Black Parrot' is a parrot tulip with deep wine colored petals, not black but very dark. Beautiful shape.

Black Parrot

     Next is fringed tulip 'Black Jewel'. Dark purple petals with heavily fringed tips. Not really black as well, but the shape is gorgeous.

Black Jewel

     And finally the most black tulip I ever seen - single late tulip 'Queen of the Night'. The color of this tulip is very difficult to catch in the photo. In bright sun it has dark burgundy tint, but in the shadow or at dusk the color of silky petals turns to almost black as on the photo at the top of this post or on the close-up photo.

Queen of the Night

Queen of the Night close up

May 20, 2012

New additions to the Garden Phlox collection

     Today looked like summer. First dahlias were planted out and more waiting for their turn. Almost all tulips are blooming. Two double late tulips 'Cilesta' and 'Carnaval De Nice' are my first double tulips. Perhaps, I will skip that type of tulips for next year, flowers are small and unruly in comparison with perfect shape of 'Crystal Beauty' or 'Yokohama' for example.

Double Late Tulip 'Carnaval De Nice'

     Couple of days ago I added 6 new varieties to my collection of Garden Phlox Phlox paniculata. All these varieties originated from Russia. Russian Garden Phlox varieties are well known around the world and it was my cherished dream to get some of them for my own collection. During my last trip to Saint Petersburg I visited one of the best perennial nurseries of North-West Russia Severnaya Flora. They have an impressive assortment of perennials in general and Russian Garden Phlox in particular. Here comes a preview of my new additions.

Дымчатый Коралл (Ph. paniculata 'Dymchatiy Korall')
Picture borrowed from Russian Phlox Society

Лорд (Ph. paniculata 'Lord')
Picture borrowed from Severnaya Flora

Мисс Ольга (Ph. paniculata 'Miss Olga')
Picture borrowed from Severnaya Flora

Покровский Барон (Ph. paniculata 'Pokrovskij Baron')
Picture borrowed from Severnaya Flora

Уральские Сказы (Ph. paniculata 'Uralskie Skasi')
Picture borrowed from Dacha Photo Catalog

Фламенко (Ph.paniculata 'Flamenko')
Picture borrowed from Severnaya Flora

May 16, 2012

Nice to be back home

      Isn't it nice to come back home after a few days long trip in May and notice all the changes in the garden? Just in 5 days garden has changed remarkably. Most of the tulips were still in bud when I left but now many are flowering. My first time attempt to plant tulips in color combinations seems to work well. Here are couple of examples.

Tulipa fosteriana 'Orange Emperor' and Single Early Tulip 'Yokohama'

Fringed Tulip 'Crystal Beauty' and Darwin Hybrid Tulip 'Golden Apeldoorn'

Darwin Hybrid Tulip 'Van Eijk'

Kaufmanniana Tulip 'Giuseppe Verdi'

     Perennials are growing very fast, they look different every day. Foliage is freshly green and soft on touch.

Aruncus aethusifolius

Dicentra spectabilis

Adiantum pedatum

     When I left 5 days ago there was not a single flower open on rhododendrons. Today 'Cunningham's White', the earliest of my rhods, is in full bloom. I especially like the combination of pink flower buds and white flowers.

Rhododendron 'Cunningham's White'