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Jo's August 2018 post

Hello Everyone

So the rain arrived eventually and we all survived the hottest summer we've had for some time. I'm always amazed at how quickly the grass recovers. There is a lot of regeneration going on at Myddelton and I think we will be getting another burst of colour in the borders through the Autumn.

First of all this month I'd like to thank Dr Roger Holland and Mr Peter Dreblow who both helped solve the mystery of the white flowered teasel for me. The usual one we see in the garden is the lilac flowered teasel, Dipsacus fullonum. The white flowered teasel is Dipsacus laciniatus and it is rarely seen so I was very pleased to have taken photographs and include it in my newsletter. The weather seems to have suited them and they have thrived in the Arboretum, photo 1. Also, in the photo is the bamboo. This was cut down to ground level in March and is now about 2 metres high.

Walking up the Front Drive I noticed this lovely splash of colour. Hydrangea aspera and Thalictrum, also known as Meadow Rue, photo 2. I thought a close up of the flowers was worth including too, photos 3 and 4.

Moving on to Bowling Green Lawn, the Agapanthus have also enjoyed the long hot summer, photo 5. They probably thought they were back home in South Africa. The stunning flowers are always a welcome addition to the garden, photo 6.

In the Peach House there have been good crops on all the peach and nectarine trees. Photo 7 shows the nectarines. I have tried both and nothing beats the taste of fresh fruit straight from the tree.

Whilst some plants and shrubs around the garden have struggled a little in the hot weather the plants in the Glasshouses have gone from strength to strength. There is plenty to see there. The Euphorbia Trigona, African Milk Tree, is unusual as this is a succulent rather than a cacti because it grows leaves along the edges of its stems, photo 8. The next plant is a multi headed unknown Mammilaria cacti of the Ancistracantha group, photo 9. It was amongst a selection of plants donated by the Lea Valley Branch of the British Cactus & Succulent Society recently. The begonias are all doing well and I love this arrangement of Begonia 'Escargot' on the left, 'Fireworks' at the back and 'Black Fang' to the right of the group, photo 10. The leaves of the Begonia 'Escargot' really do resemble the shell of a snail, photo 11. Another plant here is the Tradescantia Zebrina Pendula 'purpusii', photo 12. A big name for a small plant but it does have big ideas, photo 13. I'm not sure if I've captured it properly but there is a lovely iridescent sheen to the leaves. I can't leave the glasshouse without mentioning the Aristolochia, Dutchman's Pipe, photo 14. The flowers have been abundant this year. Finally, in glasshouse No 4 we find the peppers. This is the Bolivian Rainbow Pepper, photo 15. I think I might have to grow some next year just for the colours.

Outside of the Glasshouses the Cut Flower Beds are still going strong, photo 16. The Cosmos, Antirrhinums and Sunflowers have been joined by the Helichrysums, photo 17.

There are more surprises in the Old Conservatory. I love this Euphorbia canariensis, originally from Tenerife, photo 18. It looks just like a candelabra and if it was in a pot it would make a great centrepiece on a dinner table. It would definitely have the guests talking. Next door in the Grotto part of the conservatory is this selection of pots, photo 19. They have been moved in here as the leaves were being scorched when grown in the front part of the conservatory. The front pot is Asplenium nidus, Birds Nest Fern and the next two are Veratrum Album in flower here for the first time in a while, photo 20.

Finally, if the Gardeners are wondering who is taking their fruit I think I've found the culprit! This Carrion Crow was certainly making sure he had one of his 'five a day'. For those of you who thought this was just a big black bird take a look at the lovely colours on his wings, photo 21.

Hope you've enjoyed this little meander round the garden.

See you soon.

Best Wishes


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