Sunday, April 20, 2014


Primula Candelabra- A Thriving Gift
The friend who gave me this Primula has not had the same show with hers as this one gave last year, in its second year with me. It sprouted three vigorously flowering candelabra and attempted a fourth.  Another bunch of leaves just like this one has appeared this year.  It would be lovely if it becomes a successful relative and companion.  I have recently planted other types of Primulas in the same patch. I would love to see a natural spread of Primulas. I want them to be a part of the perennial natural garden corner I am trying to create with a variety of seasonal flowerings plants.

Some ecological (eco) flower seed packs I have purchased in the past, have provided what I would call weeds, a constant in gardening, which, I for one, would like to reduce upon. I know some plants generally described as weeds are to others, 'interesting'.  One good thing that came out of an eco [with weeds] seed packet,  was lots of lovely growth of flat parsley which, for me, would be a kitchen herb not  a flower. The parsley peered out of the ground and stopped still over winter. The parsley has put some energy into growing in the last month or so, giving me an opportunity to use a little in my culinary preparations already, together with just a smidgin of garlic chives, (it hasn't 'bushed up' yet, so I daren't take too much) and few young peppermint leaves.

Moral of tale: read eco seed packet carefully if you do not want to re-seed your garden plot with weeds.
Chard An Elegant Vegetable Leaf  - Grown In 2011
Last year, I also planted really old Cornflower seeds from the remainder of a packet I had in a drawer; to my surprise they eventually produced a lovely little show, though, not for long as with late flowering, late Autumn, which can be very chilly here, and  in the words of Eliza Doolittle, (My Fair Lady) Autumn is, "as what did 'em in"!

My Borage plant, a gift -a  dreadfully ugly thing when fully grown - produced fabulous bright blue, little star shaped flowers, which were lovely in salads. They can be crystallised for food decoration and eaten that way, if anyone fancies doing it. 

The Plants Just Before They Got Hugely Out Of Hand. Young Borage At Centre. 2013
The two Lovage plants I bought are not much prettier than the Borage, I mentioned.  Their abundant leaf growth is a dominant feature and the leaves are what you use for flavouring home-made soup. Someone described the smell as certain well-advertised internationally known vegetable stock cube ingredient. I bow to their superior Knorr-ledge.  I can't vouch if it's the actual taste.  I can say Lovage leaves work okay to give a soup that extra ooomph.


Anonymous said...

That all looks and 'smells' lovely - I bow to your culinary expertise!

Anonymous said...

I hope that your primulas so spread as they provide much welcome colour.
As you say some wildflower seed packets contain some generally unwelcome plants.
I agree about borage being a lovely flower on an ugly plant, I usually have one that self-seeds year to year. Flighty xx

Snowbird said...

It's lovely to be able to take a peek in your garden. Now I've never tried those eco seeds for the very reasons you state, I've heard many saying the same thing. I didn't know you could eat the borage flowers, that's good to know. Here's to your primula's spreading!xxx

ZACL said...

Hi Gillyk,

How kind of you to bow to my culinary efforts. I would advise not to be too energetic about it!

The Lovage and the Borage provide far more usable bits than is possible for one household to fully utilise.

ZACL said...

Mr F, someone else mentioned the self-seeding of Borage. I was not aware it did that. I shall have to keep an eye out for it. If the plant is in the right place, and it's only one, I shall let it grow. Lots of conditions associated with the arrival of Borage, as you see.

I too hope the primulas do their 'thing' Mr F. xx

ZACL said...

Yes, Snowbird, Borage flowers, calendula, nasturtiums, to name a few edible plants and flowers. There are many more. Give it try! Though, with nasturtiums, in certain environments they attract aphids. Best to grow those in windowsill boxes. They do re-seed easily in the milder climates of the South. I get a few here, not many, that do it, here in the cold far north. xx

Anonymous said...

Your garden looks lovely, and I like the idea of a green garden including some herbs. Haven't heard of the eco seed packets... but then I haven't bought any seeds for many years... now my children do that.

ZACL said...

Hello Shimon,

That was a little snap of my last year's garden in the bottom picture. I reserve that patch for kitchen herbs that grow outside here, and some hardy annuals,together with edible flowers to give a bit of colour. There are a few pots with things in, as well.

Thanks for your comment.