Something very exciting happened on Tuesday! The stretch of dead looking land that flows like a ribbon around the new paddock gardens was finally rotavated and sown with hundreds and thousands of tiny little wildflower seeds!!
Here’s the tractor ploughing up the soil so it’s nice and soft for the seed to take root.
We hummed and harred a bit about the small-ness of the seed. What would be the best way to distribute them evenly? Finally decided on the smallest bit of equipment they had….
and even so….1.5kg of seed look pretty pathetic!!
We were advised to sow 2-3 grams per 10m square so that’s what we did. Not sure if my fingers will uncross this week before I see evidence of the tiny wild shoots peeping through. We were lucky enough to get a big shower of rain overnight which can only help. I chose quite a tall mix of wildflowers including marigold, lupin, cosmos, nigella, coreopsis, cornflower and poppy and the idea is to mow a path through the field with little stopping points along the way. I’m thinking of adding a couple of fruit trees for shade too…..
Talking of trees…..the Nuttery has been planted up with a mixture of almonds and hazelnuts and also some hawthorne, crabapples, kowhai, elderflower, Magnolia, Pomegranite, Taxodium, Eucalyptus and willow. Quite a mix! We planted in small groups of the same variety to avoid a “spotted” look and our choices were led by a desire for blossom, fruit, Autumn colour, appeal to birds and produce to eat or display in a vase. I hope we’ve got it right. The winding path takes you through the wood into a hazelnut circle and out onto the wildflower meadow where another path will begin. I was given some beautiful foxgloves from my Farmer Friend which I planted the very same day along the Nuttery path. They seem to like their new spot and are flowering happily.
The Cutting Garden is beginning to take shape slowly but surely. I’ve planted out almost two beds full of annual and perenniel seedlings. I can’t wait to see them in a few weeks as they bulk up and begin to flower. Some other flowery highlights from around the garden include this Cecil Brunner rose.
It’s best to pick it when the buds are just open. If you pick a closed bud it will just droop in a vase. The scent is very delicate rather like the flower but it looks fabulous on it’s own or in a little posy. The climbing rose Casino that I planted in the vege garden last year is rampaging away and producing beautiful delicate yellow flowers on very strong stems. This will looks gorgeous with white scented stocks and purple cerinthe.
The purpe cerinthe was transplanted from a shady spot to a sunnier position and it’s thriving. It’s foliage is as gorgeous as it’s flowers.
I’m wondering how well chamomile will do in a vase. I know that Feverfew is very happy to mingle with others in a posy as are many other herbs so I’m going to experiment with Chamomile seeing as I have so much of it that self seeded from last year’s Spice bed.
I’m really hoping that I’ll get the tall spiky pink flowers from my clary sage this year. I’ve lined the chicken walk with this very robust plant with it’s large hairy leaves and I’m hoping for a bit of colour from it this year.
I’ve been experimenting with many of the spring flowers from the cutting garden although I left my tulips alone to hopefully build strength for next year because I was a little late planting them. I think ranunculus and anemones are amongst my faourite flowers ever. Picked regularly they go on and on and on – such a generous flower.
Here is a red ranunculus with purple cerinth, frothy bronze fennel (smells delish!) and what I think is a type of hypericum. There’s nothing like picking flowers from the garden!