April 3rd 2016

My good intentions of trying to help you all know the layout of the garden seemed to confuse rather than help.  Let’s see if I can do better today.

We’re going to stay in the west part of the garden;

Standing at the top of the entrance drive, with the terrace (looking west) on your left, the upper drive border edge is in the foreground and the large island is beyond that

Standing at the top of the entrance drive, with the terrace (looking west) on your left, the upper drive border edge is in the foreground and the large island is beyond that.

This is image three from yesterday’s post.  The following image was taken from the terrace between the two plants of Euphorbia rigida on the left.

Standing in the middle of the two pillars the path is intentionally slightly off centre

Standing in the middle of the two pillars the path is intentionally slightly off centre

The branches to the right are the crab apple.

The crab apple blossom is prettier each day

The crab apple blossom is prettier each day

Looking from the middle of the path that leads around the large island

Looking from the middle of the path that leads around the large island

The large island is to the left, to the right is the upper drive border which as we turn the corner that you can see becomes known as the upper slope path.

As we turn the corner in the above image.

As we turn the corner in the above image.

I sometimes refer to the right hand side of the path here as the Crimson zone.

T. Barcelona is on both sides of the path.

T. Barcelona is on both sides of the path.

Tulip Barcelona

Tulip Barcelona with some red parrot tulips that were planted years ago.

Looking back T. Barcelona already surrounded by Iris foliage, with a lavender plant behind.

Looking back T. Barcelona already surrounded by Iris foliage, with a lavender plant behind.

To our left Phlomis with yet more tulisp

To our left Phlomis with yet more tulips, this time T. Purple Dream.

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Phlomis is in full flower now, it is one of the plants in the garden that seeds itself everywhere, many of the seedlings are pulled out like weeds as otherwise the whole garden would become a monoculture.

Moving a few steps on

Moving a few steps on

Looking right across the large island to the wisteria on the south facing terrace

Looking right across the large island to the wisteria on the south facing terrace

Looking left, under the Arbutus; hemerocallis foliage is already hiding the foliage of T.

Looking left, under the Arbutus; hemerocallis foliage is already hiding the foliage of T. Lambarda.

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T. Lambarda

Some of the bulbs obviously have virus as the colours have streaked

Some of the bulbs obviously have virus as the colours have streaked, you can understand how that might have attracted bulb buyers during the years of Tulip mania.

Looking further ahead, past the two beds now joined to make one, T. Brown Sugar always looks great against the new red foliage of Photinia

Looking further ahead, past the two beds now joined to make one, T. Brown Sugar always looks great against the new red foliage of Photinia

As we turn slightly left around the end of the Large Island to our right is the old circular rose bed with T. Negrita and Rosa Sophie's perpetual.

As we turn slightly left around the end of the Large Island to our right is the old circular rose bed with T. Negrita and Rosa Sophie’s perpetual.

We're walked past the new cork oak with T. Mount Tacoma still looking lovely (I'll be growing more of these next year. T. Negrita in the large island and beyond the path in the circular rose bed

We’re walked past the new cork oak with T. Mount Tacoma still looking lovely (I’ll be growing more of these next year. T. Negrita in the large island and beyond the path in the circular rose bed

Now the Phlomis is on our left and you can see the three cypresses again

Now the Phlomis is on our left and you can see the three cypresses again, with the greenhouse in the background on the other side of the drive.

Clematis armandii id growing through the rose that is planted on the pillar on the left of where we began.

Clematis armandii is growing through the rose that is planted on the pillar on the left of where we began.

We are having a lovely day with sunshine, I hope you are having a good day too.

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47 thoughts on “April 3rd 2016

  1. Christina, your garden is just gorgeous. I “oohed” and “aahed” my way through this post. It looks like rock is your material of choice for your pathways, is that correct? Does it get hot during your summers?

    • Hi Tina, yes our summers are hot and dry; there’s usually no rain for 2 or sometimes three months. Temperatures average the mid 30’s Centigrade but can reach 40°C. Night time temperatures don’t drop much either. I have no grass except what grows under the olives, which is dead and brown during summer. I’m glad you’re enjoying my garden; today’s post was just a small part of the garden, I’ll be posting every day this month.

  2. Lovely pix, lovely garden and so well-planted. I am amazed at the amount in flower this early in the year. Did you choose to move to the house knowing the climate would be great for such a huge range of plants? And how old is the garden in terms of your planting plans?

    • We bought the house in December 2006; the planting shown in the post today and yesterday was begum in 2009 but the bed right in front of the terrace was modified in 2014. We bought the house because it had a flat area in front of it, many houses have slopes all around them which can make life difficult and expensive if you need to make terraces. The climate isn’t easy. I’m sharing all the flowers now because in July and August there is very little.

  3. Your garden is so full of flowers and colour at the moment. It is rewarding all your planning and hard work. Over here things are gradually opening up but it seems a long way behind, especially when it is raining just now. Amelia

  4. Your beautifully designed garden is looking fabulous, Christina. Thank you for guided tour, it is very interesting to see how the different areas connect and what is happening in the borders at this time of year.

  5. Really stunning. I have tulip envy when I see yours, I can only grow them in pots as we are too wet!. You have so many wonderful plants flowering now, your garden is a beautiful place to be.

  6. Good to have a tour to refresh my memory where everything is. You posted some photos from an upstairs window once I think, which helped me put together a fair bit. I love the way you can walk around on pathways and have lovely views all around you wherever you stand.

    • For some reason I think all the tulips are a bit taller this year; T. Brown Sugar is always one of the taller ones, without out measuring I’d say they’re at least 50 cm.

  7. I confess I got lost along the way, but what a marvelous place in which to lose oneself! Everything is looking marvelous. I love all your tulips, as well as the fabulous variety of foliage you have.

    • The foliage is definitely what holds the design of the garden together. Sorry you got lost, it is really difficult to describe in words how the garden fits together.

  8. You have so many glorious tulips, Christina! My Phlomis (P. fruticosa I think, although it could also be the hybrid ‘Edward Bowles’) is just coming into bloom. It’s never self-seeded here, however, so perhaps yours is a different species?

    • Hi Kris, my Phlomis is fruticosa and sets seed prolifically, almost to the point of thinking of the seedlings as weeds. Maybe you are too good a gardener, weeding out the seedlings before to recognise what they are!

  9. Christina gracias por su paseo por su maravilloso jardín. Por un momento me he visto dentro de su jardín mientras me explicaba las ubicaciones y las flores, dando un paseo y disfrutando de los distintos aromas de las plantas. Gracias y saludos de Margarita. margarita141.

  10. You use tulips so artfully. I always fall in love when you show them. Must remember to seek out ‘Brown Sugar’ at planting time. My pots of tulips this year are just what was on sale, but they have been a delight.

    • T. ‘Brown Sugar’ has been a favourite since I first saw it at the Chelsea flower show several years ago. It repeats well, dies back beautifully and is quite tall; I’m sure you’d love it if you find it available.

  11. T. ‘Brown Sugar’ is beautiful, but I’m even more drawn to the combination of T. Mount Tacoma and T. Negrita. Would love to traipse around these paths with you!

  12. As always a pleasure to stroll through your beautiful garden, Christina, and I’ve spotted 2 tulips which are truly stunning – Barcelona and Brown Sugar. Amazing that your Phlomis is already flowering.

        • No, most of the garden isn’t irrigated, just the vegetables, cut flower beds and one other border. Our winters can go down as low as minus 12°C but in the last couple of years it has hardly dropped below freezing but I also think about the possibility when I choose plants.

  13. No wonder your wisteria’s fragrance is so overpowering when it is as dense as this – I must have seen a photoo of it before but I must have forgotten how wonderful it was. When did you plant it? I love the path with the tulips either side – always a joy to see this area in the springtime. And the fact that you have more space to plant larger drifts of things really does make a difference – you must be throroughly enjoying your garden at the moment!

    • The wisteria is the very best its ever been this year Cathy; I feel quite heady with the perfume when I have coffee or lunch outside under it. We’re having a heat wave this week although it is set to change again tomorrow! It was planted in autumn 2008.

  14. What a nice springtime walk about, I love the tulips! I also have a “broken” tulip which comes up (for two years now). I’m too weak to pull it and dispose of it, but what are your plans? I know I probably should remove it, but it’s so different with it’s likely virused color streaks that I can’t bring myself to that.

    • To be honest this isn’t the first year I’ve had “broken” tulips but not Lambarda before. The others come up again and again and look perfectly healthy so I leave them, perhaps I shouldn’t!

  15. What an interesting coincidence. Just this spring I added a Clematis armandii. I usually go with native plants but this one was irresistible. I love the scent. It was described as ‘vigorous’ and with all my prior disappointments I kind of thought: yeah … well … we’ll see. Oh it is! Filling out and screening the street view much faster than I could have dared hope. Those pink tulips are to die for.

    • The Amandii is certainly tough and can grow huge given just a little summer irrigation; mine did cover about two square metres before one very hot summer and too much neglect.

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