The burning bush

BerBerberis darwinnii flower cluster

Berberis flower cluster

This Berberis has been on fire all this week and was emitting a smouldering glow to light up the dreary days before the sun came out again.  Judging by it’s size It’s obviously a fairly old specimen and I think it must be Berberis darwinni.

Orange is fairly unusual in the garden anyway, but especially in Springtime when shrubs are usually yellow, pink or white.

Berberis in full orange glow

Berberis in full orange glow

This Berberis is beautifully placed framing my garden bench.  Most of the year it’s tiny, spiky glossy green leaves are rather uneventful and occasionally my family have queried it’s worth.  This week, I’ve been extolling it’s virtues so it’s existence in the garden remains assured.

The bees also love it, it’s been covered in bumbles and honeybees this week but I’ve failed to capture them.  – STOP PRESS – whilst I was writing this my daughter nipped out and caught this shot.  Maybe I should outsource my photography.

Berberis and bee

Berberis and bee

Anemone Blanda seed head

Anemone blanda - immature seed head

Anemone blanda – immature seed head

This is the first year that I have grown Anemone blanda in a pot and it’s been a lovely focal point on the terrace.  This week it’s seed heads caught me eye.  Up close they look a bit like an acid green raspberry but are pretty much spherical.  I’m interested to see how they develop and hope to collect some seed.

Pulsatilla seed head

Pulsatilla vulgaris - immature seedhead

Pulsatilla vulgaris – immature seedhead

In a terracotta pan next to the Anemone is a delightful Pulsatilla vulgaris, which has been beautiful but is now going over.  Some of the seed heads are already beginning to rattle so I’ll be collecting them soon.

This seed head is still immature but it’s twisted but uniform shape is really lovely.

Apple stepovers

Apple stepover smothered in blossom

Apple stepover smothered in blossom

Up in my vegetable patch, I was pleased to see blossom on my apple stepovers.  I planted four to replace two larger trees which were old and unproductive and needed to make way for a new shed.

These apple stepovers are new (well two years old) and unproductive but I have big hopes for this year having seen this blossom.  A benefit of the late blossom is that frost is now fairly unlikely.

Stepovers are small plants, trained in a t-shape along wires and grafted onto stock to remain a foot tall.  The idea is that you can use them to edge paths or beds but can step over them.  I rather like them but will like the better if I get some fruit!

Wild Garlic everywhere

Large patch of wild garlic

Large patch of wild garlic – new recipes required

This corner of the garden is smelling rather pungent at the moment.  It’s a shady path that runs alongside a wild area where I’m still planning to construct a wood chip woodland path.

I love the flowers of wild garlic to eat as well as the oniony leaves.  This year I may also try wild garlic pesto – it’s a popular foragers’ dish I hear.  Any recipes gratefully received.

Bluebells everywhere

Beech and bluebell wood

Beech and bluebell wood

I do have some native bluebells in my garden but this massed group is in the woods over the road.  It’s mostly beech woodland and the bluebells look amazing with the emerging lime green foliage overhead.

When I lived in London, I would look at the annual bluebell pictures in the newspapers and wonder where I needed to go to see them. Now an app or the internet will tell you but in those days I didn’t take time to do the research.

And now, here they are, minutes from my house. Not everyone is lucky to live so close to a wondrous sight such as this so every year I make the most of getting out there are counting my blessings.

Six on Saturday is a weekly meme – take a look at the comments at the base of host The Propagator to see more ‘sixes’ from other keen gardeners from all over the world.