Category Archives: Uncategorized

A Missing Week

Let me start with my sincerest apologies for the lateness of this posting. I’m not sure what happened, but somehow, I seem to have lost a week. It is still missing, and I’ve no idea where it’s gone, as despite … Continue reading

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Denial

Regardless of how rough the weather gets, some plants remain stubbornly in denial. They don’t want to know. For them it is still spring or summer, or perhaps spring and summer all over again. There are various primroses I could … Continue reading

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More Small Mercies

Herbaceous plants rarely if ever feature on those “spectacular autumn colour” lists, which is understandable. Compared to mature trees or whole hillsides in their autumn glory, they must appear decidedly unspectacular to the horticultural world. Apart from those very humble … Continue reading

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Small Mercies

Small Mercies Most gardeners in the temperate world take autumn colour for granted. As soon as September is by, their shrubs and trees flare up and transform their gardens into chromatic fireworks. This, sadly, is not always the case in … Continue reading

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Damp and Decaying

I’m expecting a rainbow any minute now. The sun, just west of its meridian perch, backlights a curtain of fine drizzle. This could be April rather than October, were it not for the brown leaves accumulating on the paths. Many … Continue reading

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From Adagio to Furioso

Hard to believe that a week or so ago there was an outbreak of “Indian Summer” in Shetland.  The whole islands discussed the phenomenon and its consequences: People smiling on “da street”. A little summer with all its rich tonality … Continue reading

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Ruined Reputations

Ruined Reputations South Africa is a problematic planting. Apart from the osteospermums, Cyrtanthus parviflorus, Phygelius capensis and a few watsonias, the bed’s colour from March to late July is created by non-South African plants. I do explain, and point out … Continue reading

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Season of Mud, Mould and Misanthropy

It is official. Autumn is here. And it is here to stay. Better get used to it. There was a time when I used to wax lyrically about the months from September to December, especially if autumn wasn’t really autumn, … Continue reading

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.Water

The herons have returned from their northern breeding grounds to spend the winter in Shetland. The other day I found a tell-tale rounded grey feather floating in the pond. In the absence of sufficient quantities of fishing line to be … Continue reading

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In and Out of Season

In and out of Season It is not at all unusual for spring-flowering perennials to have a second go at the tail end of summer. Primroses tend to oblige and so do most Trollius cultivars, except for the wonderful and … Continue reading

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