Category Archives: Plants to Love

Verbena Bonariensis

What makes a good plant – well in my book,   ones that don’t get smothered with bugs,   one that has pretty, natural looking flowers,   one that grows up and doesn’t flop everywhere,   one that self seeds without becoming a pest,   one that I cut down only once a year and forget,   one that insects

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Rudbeckia

Why do I like these so much, well I suppose I am a sucker for flowers that create a mood – and when these ones flower, my mood is happy.   I know the plant disappears in the winter, and is a little slow to re-emerge, but that’s because it flowers in late summer, and the one I have ‘Goldstrum’

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Papaver

Papaver or Oriental Poppies are a bit like the Oscars.   Anticipation then an over exuberance of intense activity that looks fab for a few days, then having partied hard – flop down for a rest till next year. However life would be very dull without the Oscars, and we all love a drama queen (usually), so I do think they are worth

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Crocosmia

Crocosmias are really good at creating spectacular displays without requiring acres of space.   They have bright fresh green sword like leaves, which means they grow up, not outwards and as they don’t have twiggy bits you won’t scratch yourself if they go all the way down the path.    In summer you get tropical red, orange or yellow flowers held

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Aquilegia

Many regard this plant as falling into the ‘cottage garden’ category only, but it is far more versatile than that.   I would use these to kick start a plot in the springtime as they are pretty plants anyway, although the flowers don’t last very long, the leaves are delicate and hide bare patches of ground whilst allowing light through. 

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Hakenochloa

You can’t get away with only one of these plants, they need a clump to look really effective, but the effect if you get it right – the most sumptious shagpile carpet!

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Pittosporum

All gardens need backbones, something reliable, attractive, dependable and colourful, with a little thought, you can have a better backbone than more usual ones, (conifers, privet, forsythia, laurel).    I think pittosporums are really good at this, I know wet cold soils can ‘do them in’ but even in colder gardens with a little protection from the weather by way

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Bluebells (Hyacinthoides non scripta)

Bluebells, the British Isles’ vision in spring, I don’t know anyone who does not say ‘oooh how lovely’ when they see a wood with its carpet of blue – well apart from my husband, but I’m sure he thinks it!  They can make wonderful garden plants too, but they do easily spread.   However, English bluebells (hyacinthoides non scripta) are

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Tulips

Any garden without tulips is missing something – a bit like dressing up for dinner or a night out and forgetting to put your jewellery on.  They are meant to pop up and yell ‘look at me I’m a drama queen’.    Tulips catch your attention when not a great deal of large sized flowers are out.  Their role is

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Rhododendron Luteum

Yellow is a colour for the Spring and a really acid lemon yellow seems to relish the first warm shafts of sun, without the colour looking flat.   This plant is a bit of a nothing all year, it has oval lime green leaves, which drop in Autumn, so nothing to write home about in Summer.   It’s little trick

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