April 12th 2016 – The cut flower beds

The greenhouse is overflowing with seedlings!  They need to grow a little more, so that I can begin planting them out.  I am already hardening-off some of the plants; this is more to acclimatise them to the strong sun than the cold nights as temperatures aren’t falling below 9 or 10°C.

The large cut flower bed in the vegetable garden has been weeded (well almost), I’ll finish it tomorrow.

Plants hardening off - they are almost ready to plant out

Plants hardening off – they are almost ready to plant out

The large cut flower bed

The large cut flower bed

Looking in the other direction the large cut flower bed

Looking in the other direction the large cut flower bed

I’m hoping to see new growth of the Dahlias that are planted with the daffodils on the right.    Three Leonotis leonurus are shooting from the woody base of the plants; winter was very mild this year.

Chrysanthemums left in the ground over winter are growing - that's good news

Chrysanthemums left in the ground over winter are growing – that’s good news

I have a lot of well rooted cuttings waiting to be planted out to add to these.

Cosmos self-seeders! I will probably leave most where they are and plant the new seedlings in another bed

Cosmos self-seeders! I will probably leave most where they are and plant the new seedlings in another bed

The Judus tree is flowering at the end of the right hand bed; these beds are empty but will soon fill up.

The Judus tree (Cericis siliquastrum) is flowering at the end of the right hand bed; these beds are empty but will soon fill up.


Cercis siliquastrum

On the other side of the central path (looking East)

On the other side of the central path (looking East)

The left side was planted with Dahlias yesterday.  I need to put the stakes up soon, before they grow too much.

I’ve planted the following varieties: Dahlia Le Baron, D. Purple Gem, D. Nuit d’Ete,  D. Art Deco, D. Color Spectacle, D. Orange Nugget and a pack of mixed tall dahlias is shades of purple to mauve.  Hopefully this will give me some rich purples and oranges to create some intensely coloured vases.

Sweet William, just shouting to be picked

Sweet William, just shouting to be picked

Have you started planting out your cut flowers yet?  Do you have dedicated beds for cut flowers or are you happy to pick from the borders?


34 thoughts on “April 12th 2016 – The cut flower beds

    • In summer when it’s very hot and there is no rain the garden sleeps! It becomes an evergreen and ever silver place, apart from the cut flowers which is why I decided to use the new ‘secret garden’ where I will also put the swing seat.

  1. Thanks for the view of the “future.” Somehow I lost your comment on my vase this week (where do these emails go????), but to answer your question: the tulips are in a Japanese Kenzan flower arranger with a built in frog and will stay that way until they fade.

  2. Oh it looks a veritable hive of industry there Christina. Hardening off is only just starting here 🙂 I realised only towards the end of last year that I do have a dedicated cutting bed at the allotment. I grow at least one wigwam of sweet peas every year and the remaining area is planted up with flowers. This year I’m thinking of using another raised bed for flowers as growing veg is rather hard work.

  3. I have just enjoyed a very happy half hour catching up on all your April posts Christina! You are right – I am not managing to keep up with everyones blogging at the moment which is sad but daily life is just so busy right now. The peony farm was a delight – I promise we will get over to see it one day. The real star is your garden in spring though – it is so beautiful – you could write a book following your garden through the seasons and I am sure it would be a best seller. You have so many lovely tulips and that wisteria – I am drooling!!It is quite an undertaking to blog everyday, but so worthwhile – it enables you to share so much more with us and lets us really get to know the garden – keep up the good work!

  4. Christina, you are an inspiration to me! We are minimizing our summer vegetables this year, as they always struggle so much with the heat, humidity and bugs. I have a lot of annual flower seeds and plan to plant a cutting garden in their place, thanks to your influence.

  5. Chritina cuánto trabajo! Y que hermosas flores tiene ya. Mi jardín es de Invierno puro: sus temperaturas por la noche caen a 9 o 10 º C. mientras las mías caen a 1 o 0 º C. si es que no se pone la temperatura a -1 º C. o menos. Por eso admiro tanta plantación de dalias -las adoro-, el árbol en flor, los crisantemos que han pasado vivos el Invierno y que pueda ya sacar las plantas del invernadero para que se acostumbren a menos temperatura para empezar a plantar dentro de poco. ¡Magnífico ver un jardín en plena ebullición! Gracías por la visión, me alegra y me recuerda que yo también la tendré este año aunque mermada por motivos de salud. Saludos de Margarita. margarita141.

      • Christina muchas gracias por su atención a mi salud. Es delicada y este año parece que toca que lo sea un poco más. Pero no importa, ya estoy acostumbrada y a ratos me voy al jardín ha hacer lo que puedo. No lo tengo como me gustaría pero se hace lo que se puede. Saludos de Margarita. margarita141.

  6. No wonder you wanted to post everyday, you have so much going on Christina. It looks as if you are really organised and have a great planning system. Its quite inspiring. We have had a major shake up of our cut flower beds and vegetable garden, still lots to do, but once its finished I will share. I need a few more hours in each day at this time of year!

  7. It looks as though you’re going to be very busy for the foreseeable future, planting out all those seedlings! As temperatures become consistently warmer and rain becomes less and less likely here, we’re nearing the end of our planting period (not that that’s ever entirely stopped me). I’m trying to find the rest of the plants on my wish list to fill in the empty spaces before planting becomes an exercise in futility.

  8. You are going to have an abundance of flowers to cut. I don’t have special beds and I find I am reluctant to cut from my borders until there are really a lot of flowers so I think it is a good idea to plant separately. Amelia

  9. Your cutting garden is an art unto itself. Very envious of your gorgeous Sweet William. I enjoy cutting from my borders, but can see how things might grow a lot stronger in an organized cutting bed. Enjoy this wonderful spring.

    • I’m hoping the ‘secret garden’ beds will be colourful in mid summer when the rest of the garden is silver and green, I imagine myself sitting on the swing seat amidst a sea of colour!

  10. As others have said it is so interesting and informative to walk with you through your garden at this time of year, seeing the different areas whether naked or not (the beds, not us!). It can be hard to explain the joy of nurting seedlings and plants and then planting them out and watching them grow to maturity to someone not intersted in gardening! I started planting out my ordinary sweet peas yesterday and seeing your chrysanths I have decided to plant my last year’s underperfoming ones out into the beds as they just irk me taking up space in the greenhouse!

    • I’m pleased you’re enjoying these posts Cathy. This is the very best time in my garden and writing about it every day adds to the pleasure. I think chrysanthemums are tougher than we sometimes imagine; a very cold winter would probably kill them but I may just take cuttings this year and leave the parent plants in the ground. Mine didn’t do well last year but that was entirely my fault for not finding a place to plant them out until August!

  11. It is lovely to see all this colour and life in your garden. Sweet Williams are delightful-a childhood plant for me, and the first plant I grew in the first garden that was my own.

    • Hi Linda, I’ve just this minute picked about 40 of the Sweet William and you can hardly see that they’ve gone! They are a childhood memory for me too, the sad thing is that these have very little perfume. These were planted out in autumn 2014 so this is the second year of flowering, I will have to decide whether to leave them in for another year. I think of them as biennials so they should have died after flowering last year.

  12. Thanks to your inspiration Christina. I do have one cutting bed, and have added flowers for cutting to other beds. I have planted early seed in the bed, but my flowers started indoors from seed won’t be planted out for weeks yet. I love seeing your beds….lots of work that pays off for you and us as we get to see these in your vases!

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