Barossa Old Rose Repository and the Twentieth Century and Heritage Rose Gardens of the Waite Institute

South Australia is a wonderful spot to visit if you love Old Roses! In last month’s post, we explored the roses of the Mt Lofty Botanic Garden and the Adelaide Botanic Garden. In this post, we will be visiting the Barossa Old Rose Repository and the Twentieth Century and Heritage Rose Gardens of the Waite Institute, two very different gardens, but united in their love of old roses. We were fortunate enough to visit both rose gardens twice – our first time on our way home from our camping trip around Australia and our second visit as part of a specific rose holiday to South Australia in October 2014. Please note that the photos are interspersed with the text on a general basis and are not necessarily pictures of roses mentioned in the prior text, unless where specifically indicated.

Barossa Old Rose Repository

Hannay Crescent, off Murray St

Angaston, SA 5353

Free and open dawn till dusk.

http://images.shoutwiki.com/roses/2/24/Barossa_Old_Rose_Repository.pdf

This garden is quite special, as it is the only one of its kind in Australia, being a repository of locally-grown, pre-loved and forgotten roses.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-09-53Established in 2003 on a small triangular section of level land behind the village green, the garden is bordered by a creek (with a small wooden footbridge to a former orchard and vegetable garden), a tributary and Hannay Crescent. The first 24 roses were planted on their own roots in October 2003 by the newly-formed Barossa and Beyond regional group of Heritage Roses in Australia Inc.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-13-12 One hundred-year old redgum posts were salvaged from Mader’s Hayshed, Flaxman’s Valley, after it blew down in a storm in 2004.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-24-35blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-24-59 Eleven posts were installed in July 2005, with chain swags between them for climbers and ramblers to scramble over. In 2007, an interpretive sign was installed, a brochure produced, two jacaranda trees were planted in the lawn and funds raised for a wooden table and benches.blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7364The garden was developed and is maintained by the Barossa and Beyond regional group of Heritage Roses in Australia Inc. Their aim was to find and preserve the old roses of the Barossa region, which were at danger of being lost, because of the increased use of herbicides to control roadside and cemetery vegetation, and to educate the public about the importance of old rose conservation for future generations. One of the founding members and current coordinator of the group is Old Rose conservator, Patricia Toolan, who was given a Churchill Fellowship in 2002 to study techniques and strategies for the preservation of old rose and plant varieties in cemeteries overseas (United Kingdom, France, Italy, Germany and the United States of America). She has written an article about the development of the Barossa Old Rose Repository, titled ‘The Scent of Memory’, which was published in Volume 19, Number 2 (September/October 2007; pages 16 – 19) of Australian Garden History (for more information, see: http://www.gardenhistorysociety.org.au/category/detail/132). She also supplied a number of the roses, grown on their own roots, in the repository.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-12-57Many of the roses in the repository have been propagated from cuttings, taken from ‘mother plants’, which were brought to Australia by the early German and English settlers of the region. These mother plants have been found in cemeteries, along roadsides, in vineyards and on farms, and in the gardens of old homesteads and cottages. They include rose bushes, ramblers and climbing roses. All of them are once-flowering only, their peak being from Spring to early Summer, and all have wonderful stories to tell…!!!  Note: The letters ‘ROR’ stand  for’ Renamed Old Rose’. I rather like the RORs– they convey such a sense of history!blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-16-23blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-11-17Mrs. Heggie’s Red Tea ROR, Almerta Orchard Pink ROR and Fortune’s Double Yellow 1845 (see photo below) all came from the Almerta Homestead, a small vineyard owned by the Heggie family in Flaxman’s Valley in the early 1900s.blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7358 Lady Hillingdon 1910; Cardinal de Richelieu 1840 (Miss Hatch’s Gallica ROR) : see photos below; and Miss Hatch’s Cabbage ROR (also known as the Habermann Cemetery HP Mengler Grave ROR and Gomersal Cemetery HP ROR) were propagated from cuttings from an old cottage garden in the main street of neighbouring town, Nurioopta, belonging to a Miss Hatch, who died in 1997.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-13-08blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-11-54The Ebenezer Cemetery Pink ROR came from cuttings taken from a sickly sprayed rose (which has since died) on an old grave and is thought to be the Hybrid Perpetual, Caroline de Sansal, 1849. Anna Olivier 1872 is another rose propagated from a very old rose, growing on the side of the old butchery building at an early Barossa property at Krondorf and which has also since died.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-17-05blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-16-40The ABC Howard Quarry Yellow Tea (possibly the Tea Rose, Souvenir de Pierre Notting 1902) was found intertwined with honeysuckle in an abandoned old garden near Angaston. Here are 3 photos of this lovely yellow rose below (Cardinal de Richelieu: bottom left corner of Photo 1).blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-22-41blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-23-20blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-10-05 The Anlaby Apricot Rambler and Anlaby Station Yellow Hybrid Tea ROR were sourced from Anlaby Station (Kapunda, Barossa), the oldest Merino stud in South Australia.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-14-17There were 63 roses in the Barossa Old Rose Repository when Patricia Toolan wrote her article in 2007,  including :

Gloire de Rosomanes 1825

General Jacqueminot 1853

Comtesse de Labarthe, also known as Duchesse de Brabant and Countess Bertha 1857 (South Rhine Cemetery Pink Tea ROR)

Mme Alfred Carrière 1875

Mlle. Augustine Guinoisseau 1889

Maman Cochet 1892

Turner’s Crimson Rambler 1893

Climbing Mme Caroline Testout 1901 (Springton Deserted House Back Drive ROR)

William R Smith 1908 (Edna Stapleton’s Cochet Tea ROR)  and

Mrs Herbert Stevens 1910 (Mr Heath’s White Tea ROR).blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7361blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-23-33blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-16-54For more photos of roses at the Barossa Old Rose Repository, it is worth looking at their Facebook site.

Twentieth Century and Heritage Rose Gardens

Waite Historic Precinct

Fullarton Rd, between Cross Rd and Claremont Avenue

Urrbrae SA 5063

7km south of CBD Adelaide

Open dawn till dusk every day except fire bans. Free entry.

http://www.adelaide.edu.au/waite-historic/gardens/rosegarden/

Another wonderful spot to enjoy Old Roses, this garden traces the development of the rose from 1900 to today and includes over 200 varieties of roses, with roses significant to each decade.blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7453 It is located at Urrbrae House, the original home of Peter Waite, a prominent pastoralist, who bequeathed the property to the University of Adelaide on his death in 1923, to be used for agricultural research and a public park. I have already discussed the Waite Historic Precinct in my post on Education Gardens in May 2016 (see : https://candeloblooms.com/2016/05/10/favourite-gardens-regularly-open-to-the-public-education-gardens/) so for now, I will be focusing solely on the rose garden.BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9223blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7442The original rose garden of Urrbrae House was to the west of the current site and included a long rose arbour, built from timber posts and metal tube work, which extended from the house to Claremont Avenue and was covered with pale yellow, double climbing roses, as well as a rose border on the front lawn of the house. While the gold rose below is not the original climbing rose on the arbour, it is still a beautiful rose, which graces the corner of the house.blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9229 blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7448By 1956, the garden was overgrown with Kikuya grass and had deteriorated badly with many of the roses suffering wilt and dieback. Only two of the original roses  from Peter Waites’ time survived: a hedge of Cécile Brünner and a Mme Alfred Carrière, both near the house.blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9232 In 1959, a new trial rose garden was established to the north-east of Urrbrae House by the SA Rose Society under the instigation of Alex Ross to replace the diseased roses, but this second garden was replaced by a new teaching wing in 1972.BlogEducationgardens25%ReszdIMG_7454

In 1991, to celebrate the centenary of Urrbrae House (1891), a new rose garden was designed by Deane Ross and was developed in collaboration with Ross Roses and the Heritage Roses in Australia Society Inc.blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9225 Located on its present site south of Urrbrae House, and incorporating the original rose arbour, this first stage of the Twentieth Century  and Heritage Rose Garden, opened in 1993, has a formal layout and features earlier varieties of heritage roses. Roses were donated from Ross Roses and those that were no longer commercially available were sourced from England, America and New Zealand.blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9233

I love the circular  garden, which inspired our own Soho Bed.BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9255BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9261The long rose arbour and other arches are equally impressive, especially during peak flowering season in October/ November, although there are roses between September and May. The 4th photo is Cornelia (UK, 1925) and the 5th photo Mermaid (UK, 1917).BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9268BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9289BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9280BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9238blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9270The second stage of the garden (northern end), opened in 1996, was developed by Vieturs Cielens and Susan Phillips. It has a more informal, contemporary design with low mounds, ponds and an early 18th century cast-iron fountain called ‘Temperance’. Another structure in the rose garden is an armillary sphere sundial, made by Margaret Folkard and John Ward, of Sundials Australia.BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9281BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9282Here are a few more photos of specific roses in the garden in order: Constance Spry (Shrub Rose, UK, 1961); Hiawatha (Rambler, USA, 1904); Sunlit (Hybrid Tea, Australia, 1937); Peace, also known as Mme A. Meilland (Hybrid Tea, France, 1935); General MacArthur (Hybrid Tea, USA, 1905); and Papa Meilland (Hybrid Tea, France, 1963).blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9236blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9288blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7445blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7455blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7443blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7452

Divine Damasks

Rosa × damascena, more commonly known as the Damask Rose, or sometimes as the Rose of Castile, is a rose hybrid, whose parents include Rosa gallica, Rosa moschata and Rosa fedtschenkoana. While thought to have originated in the Middle East, it is now thought that it developed in the foothills of Central Asia. It has been cultivated since Ancient Egyptian times and the Autumn Damask is thought to have been the Four Seasons Rose of Paestum, described by ancient Roman writers. Crusader, Robert de Brie, is credited with introducing the rose to Europe from Syria in 1254, hence its naming after the capital of Syria, Damascus. Others suggest that the Romans brought the rose with them to Britain. The rose below is a very famous old Damask called York and Lancaster.blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-19-13-39-08 There were two types originally. The Summer Damask, a light pink rose, which only flowered in Summer; and the Autumn Damask, R. damascena bifera, also known as Quatre Saisons, which is a rather prickly shrub, with spreading growth and leaves running right up to and enclosing medium pink, loosely-double flowers, borne singly or in small clusters, with a moderate fragrance and some repeat-flowering into Autumn. In fact, the Autumn Damask is the only Old European rose to flower more than once and is used for making potpourri.blogdivinedamasksreszd20img_9496 There is also a white sport, Quatre Saisons Blanc Mousseux, which is very similar to Quatre Saisons, except for the white colour and the fine brownish-green moss on both stems and buds, as is very obvious in these photos below. The stems are very prickly like its parent.blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-19-13-07-38blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-19-13-07-43blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-19-13-09-08blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-19-13-09-19 A symbol of love and beauty, the Damask Rose is highly fragrant with a distinctive Damask fragrance and is grown commercially for rose oil (both rose otto and rose absolute), rose water and other culinary products. Bulgaria (especially the area around Kazanlak in the Valley of the Roses) and Turkey are the largest producers of rose oil, which is used in the perfume industry. Bulgaria produces Bulgarian rose oil or Bulgarian rose otto, while in Turkey, it is sold as rose oil, Turkish rose otto and R. damascena attar. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbDrwg-HWzw.  Rose oil is also produced in Afghanistan (near Kabul), India and France. This is a photo of Kazanlik, the rose grown extensively in Bulgaria since 1420.blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-178 The Iranian physician, Avicenna, is credited with the discovery of the process for extracting rose water from the petals back in the early 11th century. Rose water is used extensively in Indian, Persian and Middle Eastern cuisine for flavouring meat and chicken dishes, jam, yoghurt, icecream, rice pudding, and even Turkish delight and Turrón, a Valencian nougat. It is also used as a skin toner and in the treatment of depression. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jEA0HzeQ-vo.

The fresh petals can be used as a garnish  or can be preserved in sugar (gulkand, which is used in Ayurvedic medicine). Rose powder is an ingredient in the Moroccan spice mixture, Ras el Hanout, (http://www.anediblemosaic.com/ras-el-hanout-moroccan-spice-mix/) and there is even a herbal tea made from the petals called zhourat. See: https://mountoftabbouleh.wordpress.com/2016/09/10/i-found-a-perfect-tea-recipe-in-lebanon/.

Damask roses are also important, because of their major role in the breeding of a host of new rose families, including Centifolias, Bourbons, Portlands and Hybrid Perpetual roses.

Description:

Deciduous tall shrub, up to 1.5 m height, with a sprawling, lax growth habit and informal shape.

Stems are covered in stout, curved prickles and stiff bristles.

Leaves are pinnate, usually with 5 leaflets only; are elongated and pointy; have a grey-green colour; and are downy underneath.

The buds have elongated sepals, a distinguishing feature of this rose family, as can be seen in the photo of Kazanlik below.

Flowers are relatively small; vary in colour from light to moderate pink and light red; grow in small to medium clusters; and are highly fragrant with a distinctive Damask fragrance. All are once-flowering, except for the Autumn Damask, which has some repeat-blooming into Autumn.

The hips are bright red, long, thin and bristly.blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-189Types of Damasks

There are 19 different Damasks listed in Peter Beales’ book, of which four are very famous. Two are named after the place where they are extensively grown. Kazanlik, also known as Trigintipetala, is an ancient rose, which has been cultivated for many years in the rose fields of Kazanlak in Bulgaria and is used to make attar of roses and potpourri. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3lJAXtccPLs and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xdEeEp9kgUo. The lax growth does better with support; the foliage is dark green; and the double, shaggy flowers are a warm pink and very fragrant.blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-27-12-50-29blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-27-12-49-46

Ispahan, or the Rose d’Isfahan, grows wild on the hillsides of Iran and is named after the city of Isfahan, 340 km south of Tehran, Iran, an area once renowned for its gardens and roses, where this particular rose was apparently discovered in a garden. Garden designer, Norah Lindsay (1873–1948), is credited with introducing it to the United Kingdom.  Ispahan is also extensively cultivated in Turkey. It has a very long flowering season, being one of the first old roses to bloom and the last to continue. Its large, semi-double flowers are a rich warm pink, hold their shape and colour well and are very fragrant. They last well as a cut flower too.blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-203blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-184blogdivinedamasksreszd20img_9259 York and Lancaster, R. damascena versicolour, a sport of Kazanlik, is another old Damask from before 1551, with semi-double, scented flowers of variable colour from blush-pink, white, sometimes a mottled mixture of the two colours on the one flower or two different colours on different flowers on the same head. It has grey-green downy foliage and numerous thorns.

blogdivinedamasksreszd20img_9458blogdivinedamasksreszd20img_9643 Madame Hardy was bred in 1832 by Alexander Hardy, the chief horticulturalist at Luxembourg Gardens in Paris, and is possibly a Damask-Alba hybrid. It is a lovely rose and has tall upright canes, 2.1 metres in height, with fresh bright green foliage; buds with unusually leafy sepals and a faint blush and distinctive white cupped, fragrant flowers, which open out flat, then reflexed; and have a green eye in the centre. Vigorous and healthy, it only occasionally gets blackspot with stressful weather. I love Madame Hardy, having grown it in our old Armidale garden, and plan to order one for here next year, as it is such a famous and quintessential old rose.blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-183blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-182 Botzaris 1856 is another favourite with a divine perfume. It also has an affinity with the albas and has thorny wood, rich light green foliage and flattish, fully double creamy-white, often quartered, blooms according to Peter Beales, though the specimen I grew in my old garden was a very soft blush pink, which turned white with age, as can be seen in these photos:blogdivinedamasksreszd20img_9454blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-195I will be exploring the Elegant Albas – one of my favourite type of roses – next month, but in the meantime, we will be continuing our exploration of the South Australian old rose gardens, with a visit to the Barossa Old Rose Repository and the Twentieth Century and Heritage Rose Gardens of the Waite Institute next week!

A Thank You Carrot Cake For A Special Lady!

This is a little extra post for a lovely lady, who has always been so supportive throughout my blogging journey! And yesterday, I was extra thrilled when she wrote a special post just for me! How sweet is that! Here is the link: https://chronicleofellen.wordpress.com/2017/02/28/follow-mrs-blooms-shes-got-cake/.

We share so many interests from craft to baking, books, the environment and the good life!  And while she is a far more accomplished knitter and crocheter than I am (or ever will be!), I still gain so much from her woolly posts, as can be evidenced by my recent martenitsas! Her post on ‘If Craft Were Outlawed’  was a classic and a standout in my memory! See: https://chronicleofellen.wordpress.com/2015/08/26/if-craft-was-outlawed/ .

I love her easy writing style and she’s always got something interesting to say or some fascinating project on the go, so be sure to check her out. And now, by way of thanks, a delicious carrot cake recipe, which I must admit is not mine, but borrowed from : The Essential Baking Cookbook by Murdoch Books 2000. I think we should call this ‘The Carrot Cake Award‘ for supportive fellow bloggers!!!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0896This is the recipe that I used for my St. Valentine’s Day Cake on Tuesday a fortnight ago, when I was a little desperate, as our food supplies were getting low and there were none of the usual cake ingredients like apples, oranges or lemons! BUT, we had carrots! Perfect! And because this recipe is normally for  a 23 cm (9 inch) round cake and the heart tin was smaller, I was able to use the leftover mixture to make a 13 cm (5 inch) tiny round cake for another special lady for her birthday three days later. I kept the cake in the fridge and was hoping it would still be fresh enough for the Friday and it was! Carrot Cake keeps so well – it’s just that this recipe is so delicious, it usually gets eaten in one sitting! So without further ado, here it is…!!! (Sorry about the slightly blurry photo- not one of my best!)blogcarrotcakereszd60%2017-02-17-11-39-42-copy-2Carrot Cake

Preheat oven to 160 degrees Celsius and line a 23 cm (9 inch) round tin with Gladbake.

Sift 1 cup (125 g) self-raising flour and 1 cup (125 g) plain flour; 2 tsp cinammon; 1 tsp ginger; and 1/2 tsp freshly-grated nutmeg; and 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl and make a well in the centre.

Whisk together in a jug : 1 cup (250 ml) oil (I usually use grapeseed oil); 1 cup (185 g, though I normally reduce the amount of sugar by 1/3, so more like 125 g) soft brown sugar; 4 eggs; and 1/2 cup (175 g) golden syrup (though this time we had run out of golden syrup, so I used honey instead, which worked equally well!)

Pour liquids into the flour mixture and gradually stir in the dry ingredients with a metal spoon until smooth.

Stir in 2.5 cups (400 g) freshly-grated carrot and 1/2 cup (60 g) of chopped walnuts or pecans.

Spoon into tin and smooth the surface. Bake for 1.5 hours (I think my smaller cakes only took 45 minutes or so), or until an inserted skewer comes out dry and clean.

Leave the cake in the tin for at least 15 minutes, before turning it out onto a wire rack to cool.

I left out any icing, as my husband prefers cakes without it, though I did dust some sifted icing sugar over a heart-shaped stencil on the surface, then my artistic adviser helped me decorate around the edge of the cake with fresh rose petals, which looked superb! We finished it off with a pair of unopened pink rosebuds in the centre of the heart! Just perfect!!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0894BUT if you want to be truly decadent, here is the icing recipe and it is divine on this cake!

Lemon Icing

Beat 175 g softened cream cheese and 60 g softened butter with electric beaters until smooth. Gradually add 1.5 cups (185 g) sifted icing sugar, alternately with 1 tsp vanilla essence and 1 to 2 tsp lemon juice, beating until light and creamy. Spread the icing over the cooled cake, using a flat-bladed knife with a sprinkling of freshly-grated nutmeg on the top if desired. The cake can also be sliced in half horizontally, the two layers then sandwiched together with half the icing!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0891I’m sure this cake will become a new favourite, mind you I still really enjoy that apple cake…! Thank you again! xxx

The Summer Garden

In order to avoid endless repetition and also because I have so much to say about Old Roses (both types and gardens), not to mention my favourite books, I am only posting four seasonal posts of our garden this year and each will be at the end of the three-month period. So here is our 2017 Summer Garden , but because I wrote a post on the December Garden last year, this first seasonal post will only cover two months from January to February 2017.blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-07-12-51-58Once Summer finally arrived, being very late to start this season, the temperatures really warmed up, especially in the month of January with some temperatures in the late 30s and early 40s! Unfortunately, we were away most of January with a brief reconnoitre in mid-January, but a dear friend did our watering for us and kept our poor plants alive, while her daughter played with her ducks in the shade of the trees!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0820blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0810This did not however prevent a lot of the foliage and new growth being singed to a crisp and when we finally returned home for good, the garden was very blowsy and overgrown, my youngest daughter’s dream garden and mine too to a certain extent, although I still like a little sense of order and the very next day, we were out weeding, pruning back dead and dying stems and leaves and watering like mad! Here are some photos of the Soho Bed before…blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0786blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1010blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-20-04and after…blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-20-38blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-25-17blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-13-28-47blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-24-11We badly needed rain- most of the grass on the roadsides in Candelo was super-dry, crackly and bleached, but we  purposefully kept our front lawn green, despite the increased cost of watering, to keep our spirits up and make us feel cool on these long hot days! Even the birds were feeling the heat! Compare the lawn in the first two photos!blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-17-14-49-36blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1126blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-03-16-15-28blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1001The Acanthus mollis were one of the greatest casualties of the long dry and searing heat, though their dried stalks would still look great as a dried flower arrangement and the green seeds are very attractive against the brown stems.blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-18-36 The hosta and the black currant suffered burnt leaves as well and the dogwood, rhododendrons and camellias under the trees, the hydrangeas and even the protea and feral morning glory, were wilting badly with the heat.blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-25-34blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-27-12Despite the dry, we still had roses blooming!

In the Moon Bed: William Morris (1st two photos) and Heritage (3rd and 4th photo), nestled in amongst flowering salvia, Indigo Spires;blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-17-14-51-55blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-14-12-24-35blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0455blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0320 and Jude the Obscure;blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-14-12-34-41blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1012 In the Soho Bed, The Childrens’ Rose;blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0814 blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-06-19-06-36and Eglantyne;blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-15-31-48blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-06-19-06-47blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0233LD Braithwaite and Mr Lincoln; blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0232blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1139and finally, Icegirl (1st 2 photos) and Lady X.blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0316blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0235blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0251On the main pergola, Adam;blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-15-19-49-54blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1065 and Souvenir de la Malmaison;blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1150 and on the future single entrance arch: Alister Stella Grey.blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-14-12-35-47 In the Moon Bed, Golden Celebration;blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0325blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-17-14-51-15blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0323 and the Soho Bed, Our Copper Queen and Just Joey.blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0817blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0404 On the front wall of the house, Lamarque;blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0990 and Mrs Herbert Stevens;blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-17-47 In the vegetable garden hedges, Penelope;blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0813Stanwell Perpetual;blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-14-12-29-55 and Sombreuil. blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0345And finally, the sumptuous hips of rugosa, Frau Dagmar Hastrup.blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0999blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1000 Flowering Salvias are in their element in the heat. I have 5 different types: the deep blue Indigo Spires and a light sky blue salvia, which I grew from a cutting from my sister’s garden, both intermingled in the Moon Bed and a perfect contrast to the pink roses of  William Morris and Heritage.blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-09-10-16-57Both salvias are very popular with a metallic dark blue parasitic Neon Cuckoo Bee, Thyreus nitidulis (see photos 1 & 2) and the Blue-Banded Bee, Amegilla cingulata (photo 3). Apparently, the Cuckoo Bee lays its eggs in the nests of Blue-Banded Bees. See: http://www.aussiebee.com.au/thyreus.html.blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-14-12-26-39blogsummer-gardenreszd30%2017-01-14-12-26-39-copy-copyblogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-14-12-25-48I later discovered some red-and-black striped harlequin bug nymphs, Dindymus versicolor, on the bright blue salvia and dead sunflower heads, though I am really not sure about them being on my roses!blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-09-10-18-49blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-09-10-13-43blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0422blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0395I also have a red salvia (1st photo), a magenta salvia (3rd photo) and a two-toned variety (pink and white) called Lipstick, also grown from a cutting (2nd photo).blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0327blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0418blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-15-32-01 On our return, I also discovered that I had planted one cutting in the WRONG place- it had grown to a ginormous size in our absence and was obviously a cutting of the Tree Salvia. It will definitely have to go, as it is swamping my David Austin roses in the Moon Bed, but I want to see the colour of its flower first before I remove it, as I took cuttings of two different tree salvias- one pink and one lemon. It is probably too big to transplant, but I will take another cutting, then plant its seedling on the back border of the garden, though I am badly running out of space!blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-13-19-49blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-13-20-02 The Moon Bed looked so much more civilized after weeding, though I must admit the fine bamboo mulch did an excellent job at keeping most of the weeds at bay! I also got the giant salvia under a little control to give my roses a chance!!!blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-09-10-17-45blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-09-10-17-50On our return trip home, we called into my sister’s new garden at ‘Glenrock’, where we took more cuttings, which I know will do well here, as her garden is even colder and frostier than we are, reaching Winter minimums of minus 10 degrees Celsius! I will definitely find room for them!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0612And I have enjoyed making blowsy romantic bouquets with the roses and salvias, now that we are home! The 2nd photo is my vase for St. Valentines Day, which accompanied….blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1153blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0855 a delicious carrot cake, decorated with rose petals! Thank you, Kirsten, for your artistic input!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0891blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0894blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0896Zinnias also love the heat! I love the bright colours of my zinnia bed between the dahlias and the sunflower!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0789blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0347blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-22-56blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0458 They are such generous flowers and are obviously excellent self-seeders, as all the zinnias in my new patch were spontaneous seedlings from last year’s old patch in the cutting garden and there are more in the vegie patch and the Moon Bed as well. Their only defect in my eyes is their lack of scent!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0332blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-23-22blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-23-29blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-14-12-34-12blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0339blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-01-21-06-19blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0462blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-16-13-36-39blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0998blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0337blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0335blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-15-30-41 blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0460It doesn’t seem to worry the bees and the butterflies though!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0028blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1046Zinnias are fabulous flowers for bright cheery arrangements! I have been cutting bouquets all month, including one for this beautiful old vase, which I recently found (2nd photo).blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0356blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-02-11-23-45blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0361 The dahlias are also wonderful for bouquets…!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0237blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0240Unfortunately, the late frost when the dahlias were just resurfacing in late Spring finished off the scarlet dahlia on the corner of the vegetable patch, but bright orange Meadow Lea has performed very well again this year and the mixed dahlia patch recovered brilliantly, providing plentiful nectar for exhausted, battle-scarred butterflies!blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-09-10-21-57blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-16-13-37-51The Cutting Garden also had a big cleanup after its rampant romp while we were away!blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-07-12-52-09The wild dandelions in the lawn were the next victims in our sights, even though they look so sunny and pretty!blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-07-11-54-27blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-07-11-54-47Agapanthus and Hydrangeas are essential components of the Summer garden, their cooling blues contrasting dramatically with the fiery red of the Monbretia flowers.blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-17-14-50-02blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-17-14-52-51blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1015blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1018blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1022blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0988I particularly loved the varying colours of the hydrangeas this year, with lots of green and graduated blues.blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-05-11-19-33blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0287blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1051blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0367 Ceratostigma, Convovulus maritima and the Rosalie Geranium also provide touches of blue in the garden,blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-13-19-15blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1070 while the cigar plant and this unidentified seedling (another cutting) lend purple hints.blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1067blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1057 The thyme surrounding the sundial in the Soho Bed is in full flower.blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1149blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1148I was very excited to see the green bells of my one and only Molucella (Bells of Ireland) seedling (from sown seed).blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1144 I love the dusky pink bells of the correa on the terrace and the red bottlebrush blooms at the bottom of the garden,blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0266blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-09-10-09-18blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-09-10-09-41blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-01-21-08-58 as well as the deep red blooms of my potted ivy leaf geranium, a reminder of our rose trip to Clare, South Australia, in October 2014.blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-13-18-42The feverfew recovered brilliantly from its transplanting in the cutting garden, then positively romped ahead, blooming profusely with its pretty white daisy-like flowers.blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0811 Caroline’s chamomile flowers are very similar in appearance. I have separated all the tiny plants and planted them in front of the Tea plant and the Native Frangipani over our old dog Scamp’s grave. They could have a battle with the couch, but if successful, will form a lovely patch to sit on while we commune with Scamp and drink tea – Chamomile Tea of course!!!blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-05-11-22-42blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-13-21-19blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-13-21-25 My Dianthus ‘Doris‘ and ‘Coconut Ice’ are reblooming and even the Philadelphus virginalis got a bit confused with the later Summer, throwing out a late bloom mid January!blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-09-10-30-09blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-18-03blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1016 We planted Autumn crocus bulbs, given to us by my sister, under our quince tree and the first two have already bloomed!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1048blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-13-10-54-59blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0398My lemonade tree was also in flower over that period and we now have lemonade fruits developing nicely, as well as a large number of Tahitian limes, one Navel orange and one Lisbon lemon, our first crop for all trees!blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-14-12-34-56blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-21-57blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-20-51blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-05-11-23-17blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-05-11-20-04I think we will be getting a bumper crop of cumquats again this season! The scent in the air from the cumquat blossom is intoxicating!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0399blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0400Fortunately, I don’t think fruit bats like citrus (though Ross’s favourite orange stink bugs do!), as a small colony has decided to extend their holiday in the trees across the creek. Because we were away, we never got to taste our plums this year, though I suspect the fruit bats did (!), but we were the lucky recipients of this box of home-grown peaches, given to us by our lovely watering angel!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1075blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1073blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-02-11-58-33 It appears that this year, we are going to have a really good fig season too- hopefully they will ripen before the onset of Winter and the bats don’t get them first! Maybe this is why they are still hanging round (literally!) !!!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0274I’m uncertain as to whether flying foxes don’t eat Golden Hornet crab apples either, but maybe they haven’t discovered them yet!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0017blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-17-14-50-26blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0805 We have even had our first fruit on our Camellia sinensis (Tea) plant!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0804We have also been enjoying fresh salads from the garden, lettuce (now bolting!), spicy rocket and delicious warm cherry tomatoes, all picked straight from the garden just before eating!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0798blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-09-10-25-22 We have been particularly impressed with the golden cherry tomatoes, which self-seeded from a single bush last year. They are so pretty in the salads! I love the red ones too!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0799 blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0899blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0249We also feasted on bruschetta, made from our own freshly-picked tomatoes and rocket on our own home-made bread, still warm from the oven!blogsummer-gardenreszd25%2017-02-15-13-11-36 I’m not sure whether we will actually get many pumpkins this season, but at least the insects are enjoying the flowers! This year’s crop is obviously not as thuggish as their parents last year, although they are still attempting to take over the new compost bays!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0326blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0344blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0343They are making a late run for their money! Most of the pumpkins are tiny, though we did discover this larger beauty, skulking by the tree dahlia under lots of large leaves!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0414blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0418And Ross’s beans have also come to the party, their long purple pods contrasting with the bright orange self-seeded zinnias below. These delicious purple beans are quite magical, as they turn green on cooking!blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-27-25blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-26-28blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0794blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1004 Though we did wonder why their leaves were so ratty and denuded at the top! A female Satin Bowerbird was the culprit!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0386blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0377By the end of Summer, Ross felt he had the garden under control to some extent and had even dug and started edging the vegetable gardens with old wooden fence palings and pruned the raspberry canes, which had finished fruiting, though our gardening helper still manages to find the odd ripe one!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1167blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1169blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0396blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0411blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0428blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0419blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0042Fortunately, the feral Duranta, which suffered so badly during the worst of the Summer heat, has now recovered with fresh green leaf, flowers and new berries for the birds (compare the first two photos before and after the rain – the brown shrub in the background of the 1st photo is the Duranta!) In the 3rd photo, the Duranta is the 2nd shrub back on the left side,blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-10-20-00blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0279blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0300blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0269though our resident Grey Fantail still likes to keep an eye on the progress in the vegetable patch!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0792Other visitors to the garden include a Yellow Thornbill in the pepperina tree;blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0868a female Koel or Storm-Bird;blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0581A pair of jet-black Ravens;blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0474and a female and immature male King Parrot.blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0600blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0597The big news of Summer is the development of the White-Faced Heron chicks. If you remember, last December, we watched the parents build a very flimsy platform of twigs and sticks, high in the Cottonwood Poplar.blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-14-12-24-09blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-14-11-47-15Our verandah is an excellent vantage point to watch the herons through binoculars and I was able to take some good photographs of the babies, once I attached my camera to a tripod.blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-14-12-01-24blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-14-12-02-27Even though the chicks are very well-camouflaged and hidden behind the leaves, once you have worked out your landmarks (the twig wreath in the photo below) to accurately pinpoint the birds with the lens, it was possible to get a few shots.blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-02-13-42-09-1 I suspect there may have initially been three chicks, as this photo suggests.blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-01-14-12-02-58 However, by the time we arrived home, there were only two surviving chicks and they had grown enormously!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0588BlogSummer GardenReszd20%IMG_0533.jpgblogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-02-13-01-01blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-02-12-24-14 We enjoyed watching them sit high above the nest and learn balancing skills, though they were still a bit wobbly. They started jumping from branch to branch,blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-02-12-21-19BlogSummer GardenReszd20%2017-02-09 17.40.31.jpgand quickly mastered their grooming techniques,blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-02-12-41-01blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-02-12-40-05 their fluffy undersides giving away the fact that they were still babies!blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-02-13-09-37blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-02-13-13-52Another difference between babies and their parents is that the adults have white faces.blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0422blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0429I really hoped we would get to see the chicks’ first flight. It’s always such a miraculous moment and such a leap of faith! Maybe the sight of these more experienced aviators was helpful- a large flock of Little Corellas, which returned briefly in mid January to wheel and dive in the blue blue Summer skies of Candelo!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1041blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1043blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1031Or maybe, it was the flock of Gang-Gang Cockatoos, but we did achieve our desire!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0652 It was just so exciting! I think the first brave baby got the shock of its life, when it first ventured forth, flying straight back to the nest immediately! But as time went on (with the constant encouragement of their parents), they both gained confidence and were soon wheeling and diving with sheer joy!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0556blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1106 We were very happy to see them return to the tree each night, as well as during the day, for a rest and groom. They brought their teenage friends home, at least that’s what I assume, as none of them had white faces!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0902blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1015blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1018blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0944blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0931 Following the lead of their parents,blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1142blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1109 the chicks soon discovered the local rooftop next door.blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0003blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0009 One day, the most confident chick flew into the top of the bamboo stand by the house, and then flew straight at me to land on the verandah roof!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0607blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0626The sight of these beautiful herons on our roof , their soft mushroom plumage complimenting the house colours so well (their yellow legs even matched the gutter colour!), with the rising morning moon in the background, gave me a sudden revelation with regards to our long-deliberated house name: ‘Herons’ Rise‘ – just perfect!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0712blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0687blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0695blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0717blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1136Here are some closeups, showing the complimentary colours!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0706blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0718blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0744 They also liked to feed in the gutter and even sat on the verandah edge.blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0767blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0796blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1084blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1098 It’s a shame they don’t eat wasps, as this nest on the outside edge of the verandah is a little too close for comfort!!!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0261But I am glad they didn’t discover this praying mantis!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0365And then, by late February, they were gone! At least from our tree, though they did hang around in the local neighbourhood, fossicking down by the creek, flying in tandem over the local park and occasionally returning to the roof! I miss watching them watching us, but hopefully they will return to their old nest when it is time for them to rear their chicks!

And to top it all off, we finally we did get rain- blessed blessed rain! It’s not just the garden and we gardeners that are happy! These Sulphur-Crested Cockatoos were having a ball!blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-16-12-08blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-05-11-24-22blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-05-11-24-13blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-16-14-14blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-16-13-51blogsummer-gardenreszd20%2017-02-04-16-12-30 We had 38 ml of rain over February, so we could still do with more, but at least it did freshen things up! Hopefully, we will get some more in March!

Already, the weather is starting to feel a bit like Autumn! I love this season, even though it is tempered with the knowledge of the approaching Winter! The buds on the camellia are already forming! Our Northern Hemisphere friends on the other hand are getting very excited about the end of their Winter and the beginning of Spring! One of the great things about blogging is that you have virtual friends all over the world and are always learning something new! One of the blogs I follow (https://chronicleofellen.wordpress.com/2017/01/31/fairy-doors-and-luck-magic/) mentioned ‘martenitsas‘, a term with which I was not familiar. On further research, I discovered that they are Bulgarian good luck charms, which are given to your nearest and dearest on the 1st March (Baba Marta Day) to welcome in the first day of Spring and wish them good health, happiness and longevity. They are then worn until the wearer sees their first stork or swallow returning from migration or a blossoming tree, so recipients in the Southern Hemisphere could be wearing them for six months!!! I was quite taken with the whole notion, even though we are entering Autumn, so followed the directions on a video tutorial (http://www.prettyprudent.com/2014/03/by-craft/yarn/martenitsa-bracelet-puppet-tutorial/), although I suspect the colours were muddled up, as traditionally, the male doll Pizho is white (representing purity), while the female doll Penda is red (the colour of life and passion), though really I don’t know if it really matters! I had so much fun making them and everyone seems to have loved them! So, Happy Baba Marta Day !!!blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0448

Garden Guides and Garden Design Books

A comprehensive garden library is essential for planning and designing a garden and a wonderful way to pass a Winter evening, when the Spring seems such a long way away! Here are some of the books in my library, but please note this is by no means an exhaustive list, but just some of my favourites that I tend to read constantly!

1.Garden Reference Guides

First up, the  Garden Plant Series by Roger Phillips and Martyn Rix.

I have already mentioned their book on Roses (1994) in my previous garden book post, but they have also compiled books on Bulbs (over 1000 types) 1981; Shrubs (over 1900 types) 1989; and Perennials (Over 1250 plants in two volumes) : Volume 1: Early Perennials and Volume 2: Late Perennials 1994.

While both authors are British, they do include plants from all over the world, including Australia. Their introduction includes brief notes on plant history and origins in the wild; their use in the garden; propagation, planting, cultivation and pruning notes; and pests and diseases, as well as full colour photographs of all the species of a particular plant type. Each book starts with plants which flower in Winter and then progresses through the seasonal cycle.

Martyn and Roger have also produced a set of mini-guides: The Best Scented Plants (over 200 types); Plants for Shade (over 250 plants); Traditional Old Roses; and Climbers for Walls and Arbours – all published by Pan in 1998 and all a delightful read!

Martyn Rix also wrote the Kew Subtropical and Dry Climate Guide in 2006, a book which will become increasingly important with the rising temperatures and droughts, associated with climate change. It has an excellent plant directory of trees, shrubs and climbers, perennials and annuals, bulbs and cacti and succulents from Mediterranean regions, South Africa, California and Mexico, China and India and Australia and New Zealand, all with low water requirements. Each entry lists different species in the family, their origin and use, height and spread specifications and notes about their cultivation, drought tolerance and hardiness and humidity requirements, as well as having lovely photos. I will be discussing some other excellent books on this subject in my post : Specific Types of Gardens: Part Two next month.bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-346

The Essential Plant Guide: Every Plant Guide You Need For Your Garden (For Australian and New Zealand Gardens) 2013  is a real door stopper of a book with chapters on Trees; Shrubs; Annuals and Perennials, Grasses, Sedges and Bamboos; Fruit and Nut Trees; Bulbs, Corms and Tubers; Cacti and Succulents! Each chapter is alphabetically organized according to genus name with descriptions, photographs and cultivation notes and top tips and a table of favourite varieties with details of colour, fragrance, height and width, blooming season, hardiness zone and frost tolerance. It includes an illustrated  guide to fruit and leaf types to make description easier.bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-337

Australian Gardening Encyclopaedia by Random House 1998 is a similar book with a hardiness zone map and notes on garden design, basic design principles, planting and maintenance techniques and pests and diseases. It covers similar categories of plants, as well as Vegetables and Herbs; Ferns, Palms and Cycads; Lawns and Ground Covers, Climbers and Creepers and even Orchids, again organized by genus name. At the back is an alphabetically – ordered Reference Table, detailing growth, form and use; hardiness zone; type of foliage (deciduous or evergreen); height and width; chief attraction; flowering time and special comments about each plant. The entries are shorter, but there are probably more plants covered.bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-338

The Royal Horticultural Society Garden Plants and Flowers in Australia by Ian Spence 2009 is a slightly smaller tome, but equally valuable as a reference guide. Each section starts with notes about the plant type throughout the year, with a series of photos for each season with their page number for easy reference. Chapters include : Trees and Shrubs – the backbone to the garden; Climbing Plants – the vertical element; Flowering Plants – for colour and fragrance; and Bamboos, Grasses and Ferns –  for foliage, background colour, texture and year-round interest. There is also a chapter on Planting and Caring for Plants and very useful lists of suitable plants for particular areas like exposed sites; seaside gardens; dry sun; damp shade; dry shade; deep shade; acid soils; chalky alkaline soils; rock gardens; bog gardens and sloping sites;  or particular needs, like ornamental herbs and fragrant plants.bloggardendesignbksreszd30image-339From the Ground Up: A Complete Guide For Victorian Gardeners by Jane Edmanson 2009 : I bought this book, while we were living in Victoria, but found it to be a very useful guide in Southern New South Wales as well. As a long-term Victorian presenter for ABC’s Gardening Australia, Jane really knows her subject and is a mine of information on gardening in Victoria. She discusses the Victorian climate and soils in depth, including ways of improving the soil, different types of compost and fertilizers; watering and mulching; propagation techniques and transplanting seedlings; pruning; and garden design. Then, there are the chapters on Australian natives; exotic species for sun, shade and colour; the productive garden;  potted plants; lawns; pests and diseases; weeds and a gardening calendar of garden tasks for each month.bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-345Another self-professed Australian botanical bible is The Constant Gardener by Holly Kerr Forsyth 2007. Holly has written a large number of articles about gardening for The Australian, as well as many beautiful books with sumptuous photography. I love her books, some of which I will describe in a later post on dreamy inspirational gardening books, but this one definitely belongs here!

Part One covers the Australian seasons, landscapes and environmental concerns, including global warming, drought, increasing salinity and the threat of feral weeds (as well as possible management strategies and sustainable practices). In Part Two, Holly  discusses some of her favourite plants, which I also adore. She includes a description of her favourite varieties, their use in the garden, planting, requirements and care and the odd anecdote and recipe, as is typical of her style.

Part Three covers grouped garden elements: borders, edgings and ground-covers; lawns and grasses; hedges and climbers; trees, conifers and shrubs; native plants; succulents and tropical plants; and  fruit, herbs and spices; while Part Four gets down to the nitty-gritty of maintaining a healthy garden with chapters on soil and fertilizers; compost and mulch; propagation, pruning and transplanting; and pests, diseases and weeds.

Part Five covers garden design; colour and scent and plants for shady areas.  In Part Six, Holly looks at garden structures; gardening in small spaces; hardscaping: paths and paving, steps; edgings and seats; fences and walls; entrances and gates; supports and structures; lighting; pots; sculptures; water features and flower arranging. And finally, she takes us on a Cook’s Tour of all her favourite types of gardens throughout the world, including Chinese and Japanese gardens; foliage gardens; vegetable gardens; community gardens; mazes, knots and parterres; meadow gardens; rose gardens; native gardens; seaside gardens and water-wise gardens- all with lovely photos and examples. At the back of the book, she includes contact details for many of the gardens cited throughout the book. It’s a lovely book to dip into at random and I highly recommend it!bloggardendesignbksreszd30image-361

Garden Shrubs and Trees in Colour by Eigel Kiaer 1959 is a delightful little hardback gem, which I picked up in a second-hand book sale. While there are descriptive notes in the back of the book, I adore its quirky little colour plates with numbered illustrations of each species and tiny black-and-white sketches of the gardener going about his chores and the tree in relation to house height. The gardener always has a pipe in his mouth and is engaged in various activities from lawn mowing to raking, pushing a wheelbarrow, digging and watering and just admiring the view!

bloggardendesignbksreszd30image-344-copybloggardendesignbksreszd30image-376Botany for Gardeners by Brian Capon 1990 A basic knowledge of botany is invaluable to the gardener for an understanding of plant requirements and correct maintenance for optimal growth. This excellent little book has very clear explanations and covers :

Plant anatomy, right down to cell structure, and that of seeds, roots, shoots, and  stems;

Adaptation mechanisms for protection and fulfilment of basic needs including: competition between plants; reaching for the sun; climbing structures; epiphytes; supportive roots; water uptake and storage, parasitic plants and insectivorous plants.

Plant functions: including growth and development; environmental control; water uptake; osmosis; photosynthesis; and gas exchange with the atmosphere.  And finally,

Reproduction: including flower pollination, the reproductive process; seed dispersal; fruit types; plant classification; genetics; and the life cycle of mosses and ferns.bloggardendesignbksreszd30image-355

Stearn’s Dictionary of Plant Names For Gardeners by William T Stearn  1996 is a great reference guide to the origin and meaning of the plant’s scientific name, covering both genus and species names. For example, one of the only two scientific names my eldest daughter learnt: Callicoma serratifolia , a rainforest tree, which used to grow down by our creek in Northern New South Wales. ‘Calli-’ comes from the Greek word ‘kalli’, meaning ‘beautiful’; ‘-coma’ from the Greek word  ‘kome’, meaning ‘hair’, thus referring to the soft gold, tufted flowerheads of this tree. ‘Serratifolia’ refers to the serrated or saw-tooth edges of its leaves. It is such an interesting book, as it often includes extra fascinating facts, as well as a chapter on vernacular names.

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  1. Garden Design Books :

2A. Garden Design Principles

Down-to-Earth garden Design by Phil Dudman : How To Design and Build Your Dream Garden 2010. I bought this book when I was studying garden design at Burnley and it backed up my study brilliantly. It covers all the basics, as well as providing ready-made garden designs for different garden configurations, and very practical information about actually achieving your design from building retaining walls, steps, pergolas and ponds to installing drainage, laying concrete and pavers, establishing new lawns and planting, composting, mulching and irrigation. A very useful book to own!bloggardendesignbksreszd30image-351

Art and the Gardener : Fine Painting as Inspiration for Garden Design by Gordon Hayward  2008 is a relatively new addition to my library. Because my gardening library is quite extensive, with a  book on most gardening topics, as well as the marvels of the internet, I am now very choosy when it comes to actually purchasing a book, but this one was on sale and looked at garden design in quite a novel way, so how could I resist? On reading it over Christmas, I’m so glad I didn’t! It’s a beautiful book, especially if like me, you love art and gardens. It’s a natural match really, when you think about it. Both art and gardens are governed by similar design elements and principles like line and form, colour and scale, texture, contrast, balance and harmony etc. Gordon relates different art movements to garden style: romanticism, classical axial, impressionism, cubism, minimalism, abstract expressionism and contemporary. He examines the relationship between house and garden in some detail, as well as rules of composition and design principles, including curves and straight lines; focal points; light and shade; contrast in texture and colour; transition spaces; and vertical elements. He has a large chapter on colour harmony or contrast, with suggestions of plants of different colours and seasons and an appendix on colour symbolism in different cultures. Throughout the book are beautiful photographs of artworks and gardens – a real visual treat, as well as really making you think and analyze both art and gardens.bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-352

Garden Enchantment: Creative Design with Annuals and Perennials by Cheryl Maddocks 1992 This is a lovely dreamy book, covering colour design (including lists of flowers for different colour themes); fragrance; planting combinations; perennial borders and annuals; different garden types (meadow; natural; flower arrangers; herbs and edible flowers; pots and situations like  shade and night-time); as well as chapters on soil preparation; maintenance and propagation. There are selection lists for annuals and perennials at the back of the book, with descriptions and cultivation notes.bloggardendesignbksreszd30image-350

2B. Elements of Design

  1. Colour

The Gardener’s Book of Colour by Andrew Lawson 1996.  I bought this book after hearing a talk by Andrew Lawson in Armidale in 1998, when he was visiting Australia. After discussing colour theory, he focuses on gardening with single colours (with planting suggestions for each season); harmonies and contrasts; and mixed colour combinations. At the back of the book, he includes keyline drawings with full  planting details for the major schemes discussed. I love his beautiful photographs and his brilliant colour combinations from bold and dramatic to harmonious and peaceful. His plant directories provide cultivation details for over 850 plants. I found his section on green colours particularly useful, as the backdrop to the garden throughout all seasons.bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-349Planting For Colour by Susan Chivers 1988 is also an excellent book on colour, with a double page spread devoted to each colour and notes on the association between colour and moods, including planting suggestions for each desired emotional effect eg calming; exciting; dramatic; subtle; and sophisticated. It examines the use of colour in different situations like small town gardens; country gardens; woodland gardens; water gardens; and seaside gardens with planting suggestions throughout. She  also looks at hard landscaping and containers. The final half of the book is devoted to ensuring the maximum use of colour throughout all the seasons from early Spring to late Winter, with double page plant profiles of dominant plants in each season eg magnolias and miniature daffodils in early Spring; and  early-flowering clematis, tulips and rhododendrons and azaleas in late Spring.bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-347

The Startling Jungle: Colour and Scent in the Romantic Garden by Stephen Lacey 1986  An immediate best-seller on its publication, this book  leads into my next design element – scent. In this, his first book, Stephen writes about the use of colour and scent in the garden; cottage gardens; and the importance of foliage, then spends the remainder of the book describing the progress of the seasons, with delightful chapter titles like ‘the promise of a warming air’ (Spring) or ‘the brittle violin of frost’ (Winter). While only a small paperback , it makes up for its limited number of colour-plates with its prose and word pictures- a delightful read and worthy of all the acclaim it received.bloggardendesignbksreszd30image-377

  1. Scent

Scent in Your Garden by Stephen Lacey. One of my favourite books, as fragrance is an incredibly important facet of the garden for me and I love the luscious photographs by Andrew Lawson, who wrote the book on colour, previously described. Beginning with a chapter on the nature of scent, the book goes on to describe scented trees and shrubs; herbaceous borders and ground-covers; walled gardens and vertical plantings; rock and water gardens; rose gardens (my favourite!); herbs and conservatory and mild climate plants. While there are a large number of books now on scented plants, I still think this is one of the best!bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-363Fragrant Herbal: Enhancing Your Life with Aromatic Herbs and Essential Oils by Lesley Bremness 1998 . Published by Crabtree and Evelyn, one of my favourite shops for toiletries, soaps and fragrances, this book is sumptuous, with stunning photography and over 75 recipes for delicious meals and herbal teas and fragrant home and bath products! It has extensive chapters on herbs and aromatherapy; plans for 12 fragrant herb gardens and an illustrated ‘A to Z’ index of over more than 120 herbs, with details of their aromatic properties, use and cultivation. If ever you need a pick-me-up, this beautiful coffee-table book is essential reading!bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-374Creating a Garden for the Senses by Jenny Hendy 2009 While sight and smell (and to a certain extent, taste) are so dominant and amply catered for in garden design, the other senses of sound and touch are also very important and this small book has many wonderful ideas for creating a garden for all the senses. Again, beautiful photos, which were the initial reason for buying this book!bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-378

  1. Seasonal Interest

Plants For All Seasons by Andrew Lawson 1992, another lovely small book by Andrew Lawson, it features 250 plants for year-round display, a very important concept, especially in smaller gardens with limited space. Each plants described has been chosen for its versatility, its double value in the garden, through repeated blooming of flowers; long-lasting seedheads or Autumn berries, its colourful foliage and even the colour of its bark. For example, my Golden Hornet Crabapple, which is featured in the book, has beautiful white Spring blossom, golden fruits in Summer, which last well into Winter and colourful Autumn foliage. The glossy photographs are certainly very seductive!bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-348

Plants For All Seasons by Ursula Buchan 1999 has an identical title and also details 85 plants with multi-season interest. She starts with a big section on foliage and texture; bark and stems; flowers and seedheads and growth habits; then focuses on each plant group with a full page devoted to each plant and again, lovely photos.bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-353

This book was reprinted in paperback form in 2004 under a slightly different title: Planting For All Seasons: Beautiful and Versatile Plants That Change Through The Year , but it is otherwise identical to the 1999 book.

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2C. Garden Type

While there are numerous books on all the different garden styles from formal gardens to cottage gardens, seaside gardens, romantic gardens etc, I have only focused on a few favourites, which were very pertinent to us at the time, as we are very keen on the environment and have lived most of our years in the country, as well as raising a family. Next month, I will be discussing a few more specific garden styles as well.

  1. Natural Gardens

The Natural Gardener by Val Bourne 2004, the winner of the Garden Writers’ Guild Book of the Year Award in 2005, is another excellent read, which follows the garden through the seasonal cycle, with interesting snippets along the way about natural predators and insects like ladybirds and spiders; bumblebees and honeybees; butterflies and moths; ground beetles and vine weevils, hoverflies and lacewings; slugs; frogs and newts; and birds and hedgehogs. There are informative chapters on Winter foliage and fragrance; early Spring blooms; bulb lawns; water gardens;  transition periods between seasons; vegetable gardens; Summer flowers, Autumn blooms and fruit; and seedhead, stem and bark interest for Winter. Even though this book is written from a British perspective, its organic  and environmentally-friendly principles can still be applied to other countries, including Australia on the other side of the world!bloggardendesignbksreszd30image-366

Natural Garden Style : Gardening Inspired by Nature by Noël Kingsbury 2009 is another British book with a stunning jacket and illustrations, based on linocuts by Angie Lewin, reason enough to buy this beautiful book or at least that’s my excuse!! Its thick wood-free paper, gorgeous photos and lovely coffee-table presentation is also the reason why books will always survive despite the digital age! In the introduction, Noël discusses the importance of organic gardening methods; sustainability and biodiversity; the concept of ‘right plant, right place’; learning from nature; gardening for wildlife and contemporary natural-style planting. He elaborates on these ideas in his chapters on meadows; prairies and borders; trees and woodlands; and the wider landscape, as well as discussing sculpture and ornament; sun and stone; land and water forms; and plant selection and maintenance. He finishes with a directory of natural-style gardens to visit in the United Kingdom, Europe and the USA.bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-365

Noël has also written another lovely book titled The New Perennial Garden 1996, in which he discusses the relationship between gardening and nature and the new garden styles, which encourage and support this ethos; plantings for specific conditions like full sun, shade, damp areas and dry areas; and a myriad of garden techniques from planting flowering meadows to seed collection and storage; propagation, maintenance and pest and weed control. The plant tables at the back are particularly useful, listing plants for shade (shade, light shade and moist shade); meadows, rough grass, prairies, steppes and heathlands; moist ground, waterside, and dry environments; and finally short-lived perennials, biennials and annuals, all with great photos and details on height, growth habit, foliage, flower, season, situation, zone and extra remarks.blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0298

  1. Country Gardens

The Country Garden: How to Create the Natural Look in Your Garden by John Brookes 1987, one of my gardening bibles in my early gardening days! John Brookes is another very prominent garden designer in Britain. His acclaimed garden, ‘Denmans’ can be visited in West Sussex (along with 20,000 other visitors a year!). See : http://www.denmans-garden.co.uk/ for details. Stephen Lacey has written an article about this doyen of British garden designers at : http://www.telegraph.co.uk/gardening/gardenprojects/11619164/John-Brookes-It-is-the-effect-that-plants-make-that-interests-me-more-than-their-individuality.html.

John Brookes was one of the pioneers of natural-style gardening back in the 1980s and in this book, he describes the new informal relaxed approach to gardening; natural gardening and planting; integrating house and garden and the concept of the borrowed landscape (though neither of these are new concepts, being fundamental tenets of the Arts and Crafts style gardens at the turn of last century, though neglected over the intervening years!) ; axes, vistas and glimpsed views; drift and flow effects; entrances and exits; walls, hedges and fences; surfaces and levels; paths and paving; garden structures; distressing techniques to age appearance; sculptures and ornaments; and the importance of a garden plan and how to draw it.  He examines the garden in each season with beautiful labelled photos (like herbarium pages) on a double page spread, featuring plants of seasonal interest eg Winter flowers; Winter stems and Winter Vegetables. Along the way, he describes different types of natural gardens: gravel gardens; woodlands; neglected corners; rugged clifftop gardens by the sea; cottage gardens; enchanted gardens; water gardens; shade gardens; working gardens, herb gardens- so many different types! At the back, he includes case histories and garden plans; natural garden planting lists, with the plants divided into their use (eg food for butterflies/ rabbit resistance/ decorative seed-heads etc) and specific environments (eg different soil types; moist shaded areas; extreme alkalinity etc). While this book can be read from start to finish, its format and presentation encourages a dip-in approach! It’s a very inspirational book!bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-372

 The Country Garden by Trisha Dixon 1992 My Christmas present in 1993! An equally lovely book about country gardens, this publication has a more traditional approach and a different form of organization. It has a logical ordered approach, starting from planning the garden and understanding the site; setting the style with respect to entrances and driveways, garden buildings, water features, and cottage style and wild gardens; the concepts of symmetry and perspective, including patterns and vistas, garden walks and avenues and hedging; colour; walls and fences and finally produce, an essential element of the country garden! This was a particularly useful book for us, because it is written from an Australian perspective! Stunning photography once again!bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-373

  1. Family Gardens

Family Gardens by Bunny Guinness 1996. The perfect book for us at the time, given that we were developing our country gardens, while raising 3 young children, as well as the fact that today’s children are tomorrow’s gardeners! This lovely book positively propels kids out into the garden with its chapters on design and planning for all sizes of garden; playhouses and treehouses; garden games and outdoor living; water gardens; and gardens for pets and wildlife, and finally planting schemes of suitable plants, not to mention a cautionary poisonous plants list! There are wonderful photos of (and occasionally instructions for) Wendy houses and magical tree houses with slides; crocodile willow houses; swings and climbing pergolas; allocated areas for garden games; sandpits and paddling pools; outdoor eating areas, barbecues and terraces; vegetable patches for childhood foraging; unusual garden furniture and garden buildings; ponds and wetlands; wildlife gardens and wildflower meadows; chicken runs and rabbit hutches; adventure mazes and even topiary peacocks! I loved this book for its imagination and creativity and sheer sense of FUN!bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-367

2D. Books by Garden Designers

Rosemary Verey (1918-2001)

Rosemary Verey’s Making of a Garden 1995

Rosemary Verey was an internationally renowned plantswoman and garden designer with a very famous garden Barnsley House in Gloucestershire.bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-364

This is a beautiful book about the development of her garden over 35 years and encompassing all her gardening principles and practical techniques. I adored the watercolour designs of each garden area, like that of her potager below.bloggardendesignbksreszd30image-375

Penelope Hobhouse (1929-)

Another very British influential gardener, writer and garden designer. I own three of her books: Colour in Your Garden: A Practical Sourcebook 1985; Garden Style 1989 and Penelope Hobhouse On Gardening 1994.

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The first book could have fitted equally well into the category on Design Elements, earlier in this post, but I thought I’d keep all her books together- mind you all of them would also fit into a future post on dreamy inspirational gardens (along with Rosemary Verey and Edna Walling as well!!).

In this book, she starts by discussing design for colour and the nature of colour, before focusing intensively on each individual colour, with seasonal planting suggestions, wonderful photographs and keyline drawings of planting plans. She also has a large section on the foliage framework, both green and Autumn colours, as well as bark colour. She finishes with some information on  the science behind plant colour and notes on climate and growing conditions.bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-369

In her book, Garden Style, she discusses a large number of gardens, which have inspired and educated her, including her own Tintinhull and Margery Fish’s cottage garden at East Lambrook Manor, both in Somerset;  Hidcote Manor, Gloucestershire;and Villa Noailles in South-Eastern France. She discusses the importance of framework in a garden; archways and pergolas; paths and steps; hedges and avenues and water features, using Jenkyn Place, Hampshire and Christopher Lloyd’s garden, Great Dixter, East Sussex, as examples. She discusses pattern in some depth, both in decorative plantings and hard and soft landscapes, including mazes, topiary, water patterns, kitchen gardens, parterres and knot gardens. East Lambrook Manor features again in her chapter on more natural style gardens, along with the Longstock Water Gardens, Hampshire. The flower garden and colour border, as well as Gertrude Jekyll’s influence, feature in her discussions of Monet’s Giverny; Hestercombe and her own garden, Tintinhull, both in Somerset. The final chapter describes the concepts of garden rooms, inner gardens and informal garden areas.bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-368

In the last book, Penelope reveals all her gardening secrets and ideas, using her own garden, Tintinhull, to illustrate her theories. She describes each garden area, supported by stunning photographs, as well as discussing feature plants like hellebores and euphorbias; anemones and self-seeders; silver foliage plants; flowering salvias and roses; and cyclamen and alliums. Like Rosemary Verey’s book, there are beautiful watercolour plans of all her plantings. She also discusses seed collection and sowing and propagation by cuttings in her final  chapter titled ‘Behind the Scenes’. A truly beautiful and inspiring book!!!bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-371

Edna Walling (1896-1973)

No Australian garden library would be complete without a book by our own celebrated garden writer, designer and environmentalist Edna Walling and I actually have four books:

Cottage and Garden in Australia 1947

The Edna Walling Book of Australian Garden Design 1980, edited by Margaret Barrett

A Gardener’s Log 1985

The Garden Magic of Edna Walling 1988

Here is the back cover of the second book, in which Edna expresses her garden philosophy.

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Cottage and Garden in Australia 1947 is an original copy, which we inherited from my husband’s mother. It is one of my favourites! Edna loved old English cottages, particular their scale, charm and use of local materials, and she created her own village in Bickleighvale at Mooroolbark, Victoria, now alas swallowed up by Melbourne suburbia, but nevertheless, with the cottages still intact, though the now-mature gardens are very shady and probably need rejuvenation! I love the old sepia photographs of both interiors and exteriors in this book, which really add to the sense of history and simplicity of her delightful dwellings. She includes plans, specifications and detailed drawings of her cottages and detailed notes about doorways and windows; stonework and timber; chimneys and paved floors and homemade garden pots.

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The Edna Walling Book of Garden Design, (a blend of extracts from Edna’s first three books: Cottage and Garden 1947, already discussed;  Gardens in Australia 1943; and A Gardener’s Log 1948) focuses more on the garden, with chapters titled: On Garden-Making; Trees and Shrubs; Perennials and Ground Covers; the Natural Rock Garden; Paths, Paving and Pergolas; Walls, Steps and Stairways; Cottages and Country Gardens; and Natural Swimming Pools. Edna had her own signature plants and vocabulary, which she employed time and time again in the gardens, which she designed and then planted for her cottages.eg: Birches, Crabapples, Hawthorns, Medlars and  Claret Ash; Kolwitzias, Daphne, Amelanchiers, Spireae, Kalmias and Chimonanthus; Campanulas, Verbascums, Achilleas, Lavender, Erigeron, Ajuga, Chamomile and Thyme. She also had a great love of the Australian bush and included many native flora in her repertoire, including Leptospermums, Lilly-Pilly (Acmena smithii), Grevilleas, Eriostemons, Baeckeas, Ericas and Prostantheras.bloggardendesignbksreszd30image-359

A Gardener’s Log 1985 is a reprint of Edna’s original 1948 book, edited by Margaret Barrett. It is presented in the form of a diary or garden notebook, with little gems of wisdom and practical advice appropriate to each season.bloggardendesignbksreszd30image-358

The final book, The Garden Magic of Edna Walling, once more edited by Margaret Barrett, contains over 100 black-and-white photos taken by Edna during the 1930s and 1940s, as well as colour photographs of the gardens, taken by John Hay 50 years later. Neil Robertson writes an introduction about Edna’s life and career and while much of the book is written about Edna, it does include extracts from her writings about stonework; natural gardening; Australian native plants; architecture in the garden; the use of water in the garden; gardens for children; more  greenery than colour; climbing roses; places of repose and the art of leaving well alone! bloggardendesignbksreszd25image-356

A good place to finish, I think !!! Next week, I will be returning to our garden for a post on the 2017 Summer Garden!

The Versatile Blogger Award

My lovely daughter, Jenny Stephens, nominated me for this great award back in late January! Because we were away for most of the month, I have only just caught up with all my ‘to-do’ list, so given that Jen nominated me, I have decided to post my reply in the week of her birthday! Jen and I started our blogs at the very same time, only her posts are about travel. It’s a wonderful blog! She writes so well and her photos are superb! Reading her blog makes you feel like you are there! It has been a wonderful way to share her adventures, including all her thrills, which is at times, quite hair-raising for a parent !!! You can follow her travels at : https://exploreadventurediscover.wordpress.com.

versatileblogger-award

Here are the Rules for the Versatile Blogger Award

  • Thank the person who nominated you
  • Share the award on your blog
  • Share seven random facts about yourself
  • Tag 10 bloggers with less than 1,000 followers and let them know they’ve been nominated!

Mind you, having just consulted the following blog site: https://versatilebloggeraward.wordpress.com/vba-rules/, I discovered a few discrepancies! Sorry Jen ! I know you inherited your set of rules from your nominator! The site suggests tagging 15 bloggers (eek!), with no restriction on the number of followers, so I’m bending the rules for me ever so slightly! Even though awards are a terrific way of galvanizing one into searching out other blog sites, given how difficult and time-consuming it often is to determine the number of followers, I’m hedging my bets each way by nominating 10 bloggers (well, eleven strictly, but there’s a reason!) and disregarding the ‘less than 1000 followers rule’, though I will try to give preference to lesser-known blogs!

Seven Random Facts about Myself

  1. If you haven’t already guessed by my recent blog posts (!), I adore Old Roses. My favourite types are Noisettes and Albas, though really I love them all!!!
  2. I am also a keen birdwatcher and love our unique Australian birds.
  3. We travelled and camped all the way around Australia for 6 months in 2008. We climbed every mountain in the heat and lost so much weight! In the Cooktown Winter, I was having 6 cold showers every day!
  4. I relax before sleep with pixel puzzles and know it is time to go to sleep when I start making mistakes or come to a standstill!
  5. I like to plan ahead, both with my blogs, so I don’t panic (!),  and travel, so I don’t miss out on anything and make the most of our time! I could not live without my lists!
  6. I love books and reading and have been a keen library user for all my life. Often, I will borrow 10 books at a time.
  7. I also love film and if I had my time again, could easily pursue a career in film!

My Nominations

  1. http://www.shabbychick.me.uk: A delightful site by  Andrea Mynard, who lives in the Cotswolds with her family and writes about growing flowers, herbs and vegetables and then, cooking them! Her site resonates with us, as she shares our love of and belief in Simple Living, nature and creativity. I particularly loved her recent post on Hygge (http://www.shabbychick.me.uk/2017/01/28/hygge-wood-burner-cooking/), a new term for me, having only been recently introduced to it when my daughter bought a Christmas book from us on this Danish form of Simple Living.
  2. Andrea introduced me to Sarah, another keen gardener and cook, who has written two blogs : https://thegardendeli.wordpress.com/ and https://acrowdedtable.wordpress.com , the latter started in October 2015. Both have delicious recipes for cakes and pies, which is great for this fellow baker, but there are not a huge number of posts in the latest blog, so I’m not sure how active the site is! Maybe this nomination will inspire forthcoming recipes!
  3. I leap-frogged from Sarah to : https://aroundthemulberrytree.wordpress.com/, written by a Gippsland cheese-maker and sour-dough baker. Her photographs of her food, kitchen and garden in country Victoria, Australia, are beautiful and very inspiring!
  4. https://rabidlittlehippy.wordpress.com is another great blog about sustainability and ecoawareness by another country Victorian, with a terrific name, with which I totally identify!
  5. https://circusgardener.com/ has wonderful vegetarian recipes, which will greatly enlarge my limited repertoire and hopefully impress my vegetarian daughter, when she next visits! Its author, Steve Dent, also has some interesting thought-provoking posts on the politics of food.
  6. Emma Bradshaw, of Bradshaw and Sons, writes a delightful little blog,  http://emmabradshaw.blogspot.com.au/. It is all about simple family life and adventures, nature and wildlife, crafty ideas and recipes, photography and holidays, things that interest and inspire them and places they want to visit. If ever I visit London again, I will be sure to consult this lovely blog.
  7. https://jekkasherbfarm.wordpress.com/ is a wonderful informative blog for people like me, who love their herbs, and there are obviously a huge number of them! This nomination DEFINITELY breaks the ‘less than 1000 followers’ rule!! Jekka McVicar runs a herbetum and has an online shop, which sells seeds, books and herbal teas. See: https://www.jekkasherbfarm.com/. Her herbetum, which has the largest collection of culinary herbs in the United Kingdom, can be visited at Alveston, Bristol, South Gloucestershire and she also runs masterclasses in herb garden design, propagation, year round herbs and the use of herbs.
  8. Jekka introduced me to another herb-loving blogger, Lemon Verbena Lady, who also enjoys cross-stitch, another old hobby of mine, though I must admit that I don’t do so much, now that my eyes are not as good! She has some lovely lemon verbena recipes! Her blog address is: http://lemonverbenalady.blogspot.com.au/.
  9. The next nomination is: https://wildlifegardenerblog.wordpress.com . It is such a lovely blog about gardening, sustainability and environment by a kindred spirit! Beautiful photos and very inspiring!
  10. I have recently discovered the blog written by Emily Carter Mitchell at : https://bellaremyphotography.com. Her nature and wildlife photographs are absolutely superb and I have already learnt so much!
  11. And finally, because my second nomination may not be active still and Jekka’s blog has well over the restrictions on the number of followers (!), I have included an extra:  Lia Leendertz, who has written two delightful blogs: Midnight Brambling (now inactive, but can be accessed at : https://lialeendertz.wordpress.com/) and http://www.lialeendertz.com/blog/ . Both blogs have superb recipes, based on produce grown on her allotment, with enticing names like Gooseberry Knickerbocker Glory and Quince Icecream! I would love to be present at her Supper Club meals!!!

I know Jen would too! Happy Birthday Darling! Have a wonderful time in Greece and a year, full of happiness and many more exciting adventures, which I can’t wait to read about in your 2017 blog posts!!!

Gorgeous Gallicas

This week, I am discussing one of the oldest cultivated Old European Roses, the Gallica Rose.

The original species and parent of all Gallica roses, Rosa gallica is a small, upright, deciduous bush (1.2 m high by 0.9 m wide), which suckers freely to form large shrubberies and is native to Southern and Central Europe, as far east as Turkey and the Caucasus mountains. The slender stems have fine prickles and glandular bristles and the pinnate leaves have 3 to 7 dull bluish-green leaflets. Borne in clusters of 1 to 4 blooms in Summer, the single, medium to large, deep pink, fragrant flowers have 5 petals and pronounced gold stamens and are followed by 10 to 13 mm, orange-brown, globose to ovoid hips in Autumn.  It was known to the Ancient Greeks and Romans and only flowers once.

Rosa gallica officinalis is the oldest cultivated Western rose and was grown in vast amounts by the Romans for rose oil, medicine and potpourri, as its petals retain their fragrance when dried. It is an erect, low, bushy shrub  (1.2 m high and wide; 1 to 1.5 m in Australia) with dull, dark grey-green foliage; highly fragrant, profuse, 8 cm wide, semi-double, deep pink blooms with gold stamens in Spring and Summer (the colour varying with the climate and season, being much paler in the heat); and small oval hips in Autumn. It declined in popularity after the fall of Rome, surviving in hedgerows, cemeteries, roadsides and abandoned gardens. It also persisted in 13th century monastery gardens, where its medicinal use earned it the title of the ‘Apothecary’s Rose’. Other names are the ‘Red Rose of Lancaster’, being a symbol of the House of Lancaster in the War of the Roses in the 13th century ; the ‘Red Rose of Miletus’ (Miletus was an Ancient Greek city), described by Pliny; and the ‘Rose of Provins’ or the ‘French Rose’, because many Gallicas were grown in Provins, just south-east of Paris. The word ‘Gallica’ is the female form of the Latin word ‘Gallicus’, meaning ‘Gallic’ or ‘French’, even though they are not French at all, but originated in the Caucasus Mountains! It was thought to have been brought back to Provins by Thibault Le Chansonnier on his return home from the Crusades. Thibault IV, King of Navarre, wrote a poem called ‘Le Roman de la Rose’ in 1260, in which he refers to this rose as having come from ‘the Land of the Saracens’.

In 1629, English botanist, John Parkinson, listed 12 types of Gallica roses. The Dutch then started raising seedlings to produce new varieties, after which the French started breeding them on a large scale. By the 1800s, there were over 2000 Gallica cultivars, accounting for more than half of the roses sold in Europe at that time. Empress Josephine grew 150 different Gallicas at her chateau at Malmaison. With their penchant for the unusual, Victorian gardeners loved collecting striped and spotted Gallicas in the early 19th century. With the introduction of the repeat blooming Hybrid Perpetuals, and then the Hybrid Teas, with their high centres and yellow and orange hues, Gallicas declined in popularity and there are only about 30 cultivars available today, though Peter Beales describes 52 varieties in his book ‘Classic Roses’. New Gallicas are still being produced in France and these particular cultivars tend to do better in dry and warm climates. There are no climbers, no repeat bloomers and no whites.

Description:

Dense, bushy, compact, stocky, upright small shrubs, generally 1.2m tall and 1.2 m wide, and suitable for small gardens and large containers.

Stems are slender and have fine prickles.

Foliage: Heavily veined, rough-textured, pointed, dull green oval leaves, which turn a deep red in Autumn.

Once-flowering: Blooms profusely for a period of  3 to 6 weeks in mid Summer. Open blooms, showing their stamens, are borne upright. Flowers are very variable in form, colour and fragrance.

Flower Form: Near-singles to fully-double, densely-packed rosettes 6.4 to 8.9 cm in diameter.

Flower Colour: From blush pink to a variety of pinks, lavenders and mauves and deep purple to crimson shades. Colours vary clear to cloudy, striped and even spotted. Most cultivars are the deeper, more intense colours : deep pinks; near-crimsons; and rich mixtures of purple, violet and mauve. This photo is Rosa Mundi.bloggallicasreszd50image-174Cultivation:

Gallicas are extremely hardy, tough, undemanding shrubs, which tolerate poor dry soils and gravel, drought and shade, though their colours will be less intense when grown in shade. Cold hardy, they survive Northern  European Winters without harm. They can be grown in Zone 4 to 8 and can survive temperatures down to minus 25 degrees Celsius. In fact, they actually require Winter chilling to provide a dormant period and perform poorly in the warmer areas of Southern Europe. They propagate easily from runners and suckers and will sucker freely if grown on their own roots to form thickets. Generally, disease and pest resistant (though their leaves can get mildew in cold, damp climates), they are very easy-care roses. Only prune out dead wood and the occasional old cane to increase air flow and encourage new basal shoots. Their size makes them ideal for small gardens. This photo is also Rosa Mundi. Note the variation in the amount of deep pink.bloggallicasreszd50image-240Cultivars:

Rosa Mundi :  Rosa gallica versicolour    Prior to 1581

A sport of Rosa gallica officinalis and one of the oldest and best known striped roses, this rose was named after Fair Rosamund, the mistress of King Henry II (1133 – 1189), as it was found growing near her grave. An upright bushy rose, 0.5 m to 1 m in height and width, with smooth stems, dull matte green foliage and highly fragrant, semi-double, 7 cm wide, striped flowers (though sometimes the odd branch reverts to its parent’s deep pink blooms). Flowers have crimson, pink and deep pink stripes on a blush white background and are followed by small oval red hips in late Summer and Autumn. A very hardy rose, tolerant of Summer heat and humidity (though is prone to mildew), it makes an excellent low hedge! Here is a final photo of Rosa Mundi !bloggallicasreszd50image-208Two more striped Gallicas are Camaieux (Camayeux), bred by Vibert in 1830, and Georges Vibert, bred by Robert in 1853 (according to Peter Beales, though David Austin attributes this rose to Bizard in 1828). Camaieux is a neat compact shrub (0.9 m high and wide) with twiggy growth and arching stems; grey-green leaves; and sweetly fragrant, loosely double, blush white flowers with even deep pink and magenta stripes, fading to mauve purple stripes on white with age. Dependable and disease free, it does not ball in wet weather. Georges Vibert has a small compact habit (1 m tall and wide); many thorns; and crimson buds, which open to small, flat, finely quilled and quartered, fragrant Summer blooms, which are blush white, striped with light crimson, though the colour may vary from carmine to purple depending on the climate. See the photo below:bloggallicasreszd50image-175

Cardinal de Richelieu Before 1847

One of the most commonly grown Gallicas, this tough medium sized shrub (1.5 m to 1.8 m high and 1.5 m wide) has a lovely branching habit, shapely orderly growth, few thorns, dark green leaves and ‘one of the darkest blooms of all roses’, according to David Austin.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-49-07

While its breeding has been ascribed to either Van Sian ( Holland) and Louis Parmentier (Belgium), it was introduced by Laffay in France in 1840 and its smooth, shiny, dark green foliage and growth habits are due to the fact that one quarter of its genes are from China roses. This Gallica has also been described by Graham Thomas as having ‘sumptuous blooms of dark grape’, due to its intense deep colouring. Dark crimson-purple buds open to a dustier, deep purple plum, small, cupped Gallica-like blooms, 6 cm wide, which reflex back to almost a ball and fade to a deep grey purple. It has 3 blooms per cluster and the fragrance has been described as a mild peppery scent. It benefits from the periodic removal of older growth. This rose was genetically altered in 2004 to produce the world’s first blue rose.bloggallicasreszd20%2014-10-27-12-49-12Other Gallicas with intense deep colouring are Tuscany (pre 1598) and its sport Tuscany Superb (Rivers, UK, 1837). Tuscany is one of the oldest surviving Gallicas, described as the Old Velvet Rose in ‘Gerard’s Herbal‘ in 1596. A vigorous, tidy, rounded shrub, 1.2 m tall and wide, it has stems, which are covered with fine prickles, and small dark green leaves. Like all Gallicas, it only flowers once in Spring with slightly fragrant, large, semi-double, dark crimson to deep purple flowers with flat velvety petals, arranged around prominent yellow stamens. A very tough survivor, it is both Winter-hardy and tolerant of Summer heat and humidity. It is not susceptible to black spot and only rarely gets mildew. It suckers readily on its own roots.bloggallicasreszd50image-198 Tuscany Superb, a sport of Tuscany, is a very fine Gallica, 1.5 m high and 0.9 m wide, with almost thornless stems; larger and more rounded, dark green foliage; and highly fragrant, semi-double, deep rich maroon velvety 6 cm wide blooms, ageing to a purple black, with gold stamens (often partially obscured by the larger number of petals), followed by bright orange red hips. The seed germinates easily, but needs stratification by chilling in the fridge for 12 weeks prior to sowing in Spring. It also spreads by suckering. Tuscany Superb requires a cold Winter for proper dormancy and Spring blooming. It is resistant to black spot, though can get slight mildew after blooming. See photos above and below.bloggallicasreszd50image-205I grew Rosa Mundi, Georges Vibert and Tuscany Superb in my old rose garden and would love to room to grow these once-flowering roses again! Two other Gallicas, which I would love to grow for their historical associations are Sissinghurst Castle and Empress Josephine. Sissinghurst Castle, also known as Rose des Maures, is another deep red Gallica, which was discovered by old rose lover, Vita Sackville-West, in the early 1900s, when clearing the gardens of Sissinghurst Castle. It bears rich plum blooms, edged and flecked with light magenta-crimson, with gold stamens in the centre. See its photo below. It was commercially produced from 1947 on and its blooms are very similar to Tuscany Superb, but the growth of the latter is is taller and more arching. It suckers freely to produce thickets of thick upright stems and is an incredibly tough survivor.  Empress Josephine, also known as Rosa francofurtana, but renamed after her death, is a large, sturdy, shapely shrub, with thornless stems; clean, trouble-free, coarsely-textured grey-green foliage; profuse, mildly fragrant, large, semi-double, rich pink, heavily textured blooms, veined with deeper shades, which last for 4 to 6 weeks; and a fine crop of large turbinate hips. Like all Gallicas, it is very tough and tolerant of poor soils.bloggallicasreszd20img_9712Please note, because I tend to only use my own photographs, I have only described roses that I have grown or photographed in gardens, which I have visited. Please consult ‘Classic Roses’ by Peter Beales or ‘The Rose’ by David Austin for a more extensive list. Next month, I am describing the Divine Damasks, another very ancient rose group.