Tag Archives: garden moodboard

Garden moodboard: September

8 Sep

It’s quite possible, looking at this month’s moodboard, that my love for white flowers might be getting a little out-of-hand. But what white flowers they are!

September garden moodboard | Wolves in London

September delights from the garden

Along the bottom row there is a white cosmos (‘Purity’), with a small daisyish flower next to it, followed by Mexican fleabane (Erigeron karvinskianus, a current obsession of mine). Above them in the top left is a glorious anemone, just below that is a nicotiana and to the right and slightly above, a self-seeded snapdragon.

Oh yeah, there are some other non-white flowers too, but really, who cares so much about them???

Anemone Honorine Jobert | Wolves in London

Anemone ‘Honorine Jobert’

I think this stunning anemone is my favourite of all. I planted it a few years ago in the front garden, back when we removed the giant cactus. It has a little struggle at the start of the summer each year, when I think it’s not going to make it against its battle with the slugs and snails, and I see everyone else’s anemones in full flower, while mine looks a little sickly but then, a few weeks later, tentative little shoots and buds appear and around now the flowers are looking wonderful.

Hesperantha coccinea | Wolves in London

Same flower, new name

I’ve shown you this Hesperantha coccinea before, but it’s changed its name since then. It used to be called Schizostylis coccinea, but for some reason unknown to me, that changed. A rose by any other name, etc etc… I’ve only had a few of these by the pond so far this year, last year there was a veritable forest of them, so we’ll wait and see what happens later in the season.

Rosa rugosa rose hips | Wolves in London

Hip to be a rose…

Also autumnally-coloured, these are the rose hips from my new Rosa rugosa hedge. I think rugosa hips are good for eating, so I shall definitely be trying some culinary experimentations with these later on this year. (Not these actual hips in the photograph, of course. I don’t think they would last that long…)

Nigella | Wolves in London

So frothy!

Along with a mass of seed heads (on the bottom right of the main picture) my nigella has also put out a few more tiny little flowers in the last week. It’s nice to have a little bit more blue out there. On the left of this photo is some campanula, which has struggled on throughout the summer, producing the odd flower here and there. I really need to figure out something else to plant alongside it to cover up its rather unattractive leggy stems. (And, be still my beating heart, the lovely Erigeron is on the right of this pic again…)

Nicotiana | Wolves in London

Yeah, okay, it’s a looking a little blotchy

This photo doesn’t do my nicotiana any real favours (especially with those odd brown blotchy bits on the flower) but I’ve not photographed it yet this summer, despite its almost constant flowering. It wilts almost immediately after being picked (and often throughout the day on hot days) but looks and smells utterly wonderful around twilight. I don’t know what type of nicotiana this is (it looks just like ‘Lime green’ except for the fact it’s not, obviously, lime green) so if anyone knows, do drop me a comment. I bought five plants from the garden centre back at the start of the summer and they’ve just kept on going ever since…

Salvia seascape | Wolves in London

Salvia seascape

Finally, woohooo, a little bit of new colour. I grew some of these salvia seascapes from seed this year. They’re mixed colours and actually all the other plants are white, but this one is just starting to put out some blue flowers. In retrospect, I slightly regret cutting it down just to take its photo — but I think there were a few more flower spikes coming up on the same plant.

So there we have it, the joys of September. I’m thinking this might be one of my last monthly garden moodboards; for the time being at least. I feel as if I might be reaching the end of my range-of-plants-photographed-against-white-background capabilities. I’ve been joining in with Karin and Asa for just over a year now and have thoroughly enjoyed watching my little garden progress, but, at least until I do a major planting session anyway, I feel as if I’m now getting to a point of repetition in plant photography… Anyway, I’m not making any definite decisions, but we’ll see how the mood takes me in October. It may well be time for pastures new though. (Pastures such as Grow, forage, cook for example!)

Related articles:

Garden moodboard: August 2014

1 Aug

Oh the joys of an English summer!

July was gloriously sunny for the most part and my garden has been putting forth some of my favourite flowers as a result.

Garden moodboard August 2014 | Wolves in London

Pinks, whites, purples and blues: my favourite colours in the garden

If last month was a little bare, this month has surely been making up for it, with snapdragons, pink roses, white cosmos, frothy nigellas and a profusion of sweet peas. Hurrah for cottage garden flowers!

Cottage garden flowers | Wolves in London

No month will be prettier than this, in my book

I grew five cosmos flowers from seed this year but — as is frequently my wont — left them too long in the greenhouse and four of them went horribly leggy as a result. They bloomed on top of their spindly legs, stuck out a mere two or so flowers and then collapsed groundwards, never to recover.

Cosmos bipinnatus Purity | Wolves in London

Lovely white cosmos ‘Purity’

The one stunted runt of the litter, however, has turned into a lovely bushy shape and has been putting out a profusion of blooms over the last few weeks. I absolutely love white cosmos, so I’ve been very happy to see this plant colonising its patch of the flowerbed.

I also grew some annual sweet peas from seed, the cultivar ‘Matucana’ — said to be one of the best scented. I’m not actually that crazy on the purple and blue colours of the flowers, but they certainly do smell wonderful.

Sweet pea Matucana | Wolves in London

If only this was real life and you could smell this…

Luckily, unexpectedly, a gloriously attractive pink sweet pea stuck its head above ground in my front garden. I’d completely forgotten that last year I had planted a few annual varieties but also a perennial, so was most pleased to see this reappear. It has absolutely no scent at all, but it does look stunning. So a little jug full of the two varieties together gives me good looks and good smells, ha ha.

Perennial sweet pea | Wolves in London

I don’t know what this pink version is. Anyone have any ideas?

Pink sweet pea | Wolves in London

I love the grading from white to pink…

Another unexpected but warmly welcomed visitor was this white snapdragon, self-seeded in the front garden from a whole window box full that I grew last year. (They were meant to be used as wedding table flowers, in fact, but bloomed too soon for our September wedding.)

Snapdragon | Wolves in London

We used to make these “talk” when I was a child

Also in the front garden, we pulled out our diseased box hedge earlier in the springtime and planted a new hedge of rosa rugosa instead. I wasn’t expecting it to flower this year, so was ecstatically happy to see a few flowers this past week. Again, one with a phenomenal smell, redolent of an English park in summertime.

Rosa rugosa alba | Wolves in London

I bought 12 of these glorious plants for a mere £2 each…

The nigellas I sowed in the flower bed in front of our kitchen put on a brilliant display for about, oooh, two weeks tops. Has anyone else had better luck at getting them to stay around for longer? Yes, they looked beautiful when they were in flower, yes, I love their little blue heads appearing over all the feathery leaves, but it felt like an awful lot of time with nothing but bare soil, then tiny seedlings, then a little froth of green, only to have a fortnight of the lovely flowers.

Nigella damascena | Wolves in London

Such a crazy looking flower…

I do like their seed heads as well (despite their fairly strong resemblance to green testicles) and have even harvested enough for a whole display on their own (see this pic on instagram) but I definitely would rather have a bit more usage of the flower itself. Any tips?

Nigella seedhead | Wolves in London

What does this look like to you?!

My coriander all bolted while we were on holiday a few weeks back in the hot weather. Useless for eating, but I guess I’ll try and harvest the seeds instead. The white frothy flowers are rather attractive as well.

Flowering coriander | Wolves in London

No good for eating but rather pretty…

And the hot weather seems to be bringing out plants far more quickly than in usual years. I pulled my first crop of blackberries the other week, not normally this plump and juicy til September.

Blackberry | Wolves in London

Yum yum yum

In the greenhouse, I also spotted my first ready-to-eat cucamelon. I’ve been growing these for a few years now. They’re a cross between a watermelon and a cucumber (as if you couldn’t tell that from the name) and I really like them in salads because, well, they look super cute.

You can see the beauty of them here:

Cucamelon | Wolves in London

This could be a normal sized melon, couldn’t it?

But this gives you an idea of the size:

Cucamelon and blackberry

But actually, it’s just teeny tiny!

The Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’ that I bought a few months back is the plant that just keeps on giving. When I first got it there was one little purple flower spike. Over the past few months, a steady succession have pushed on through, heading higher and higher for the sky and putting out more and more tiny purple flowers with every day. I cut some of the tallest spikes back as they were starting to look a little straggly at the bottom and plenty more have taken their place.

Wallflower ' Bowles Mauve" | Wolves in London

Pretty and endlessly flowering!

Finally, the last delight I’ve cut down in its prime purely to photograph is this lovely pink rose bud.

Pink rose bud | Wolves in London

Glorious

It’s the last to bloom on the rose bush in the neighbour’s garden that leans over our fence to get the best of the sunlight. We’ve had a succession of flowers for the past few months, but I love them the best when they’re still just in bud. Unscented, sadly, but beautiful to look at…

Phewee, that was something of a bumper post, many congratulations if you’ve read the plant chat all the way down to here! It’s been a profusion of prettiness this month but, I fear, nothing is there waiting in the wings to take its place in September. So next month, you might have just a solitary photo of an apple or a plum. Watch this space!

Related articles:

  • Check out the rest of my garden moodboards if you’re so inclined
  • And over on Pinterest, I’ve pulled together my favourite photos from my moodboards and others: Garden moodboard board (or click on the photos below)…

Garden moodboard: July

2 Jul

I had a bit of a conundrum with my garden moodboard this month.

On Saturday morning, I was standing in the middle of the garden, secateurs in hand, ready to snip snip snip away at lots of nice flowers to photograph them – as is my wont every month.

But as I looked round my 15x60ft patch of earth, I couldn’t really see any flowers to spare.

July garden moodboard | Wolves in London

From the garden this month

I know that anyone who professes to be even a little bit of a gardener shouldn’t admit that they don’t have many flowers in June. But such is the sorry case chez Wolves in London at the moment. Lots of things seemed to flower early this year, but the usual mid-Summer plants are still yet to open up…

The ones I photographed in situ recently aren’t abundant enough for me to want to cut them down. And the ones I have in abundance, I have photographed in moodboards so many times I couldn’t imagine anything new to do with them.

“Yes, yes, luv,” I imagined you saying as you looked at my pics, “we know you’ve got loads of verbena. Stop showing us your bloody verbena.”

And, indeed, I would have no defence for your criticism, for I showed you the verbena last month, and in May, and in July last year. And you know, there are only so many ways you can photograph verbena. (Admittedly, I have only ever selected one: against a white background…)

July garden moodboard | Wolves in London

Sage, rosemary, mint and some apples…

I decided that this month I’d probably have to give the moodboard a miss and since I had the secateurs in my hand, I’d go and do a bit of gentle pruning on the plum and apple trees and thin the fruits a bit at the same time.

Even if you hadn’t already seen the photos, you could tell where this is going, couldn’t you?!

I looked down at the pile of cuttings and thought to myself, a-ha! This month, I’ll photograph the prunings and maybe a few herbs that I was bringing in for lunch. A kitchen garden moodboard, if you will.

So this month I bring you a few of the small apples that I culled so their brothers could grow bigger, the plums that have caterpillars inside and some extremely unhealthy looking leaves. (Plus some sage, rosemary and mint.)

Unripe plum | Wolves in London

A sorry looking plum

The plums are seriously abundant so I’ve been removing as many as I can in the hope the ones left on the trees will grow bigger and juicier. Last year lots got a fungal disease and rotted on the tree and most of the ones we removed had caterpillars inside. Not a huge success! This year I am trying to look after them better…

 

Apple | Wolves in London

Already bruised…

Unripe apple | Wolves in London

Rosy but culled nonetheless

Apple | Wolves in London

Yet another damaged apple

We’ve got three different types of apple tree.  On a visit to Wisley on Sunday (more on that later this week), I tried to get them to identify the cultivars for me, but apparently they need the fruit specialist to do it in the Autumn once the fruits are fully grown. We shall return then, and I will finally know what’s growing in my garden…

Apple branch | Wolves in London

The RHS expert couldn’t even identify it from all this branch, leaves and fruit!

And perhaps I shall ask them what on earth if wrong with these poor leaves too…

(My guess is: caterpillars chewing on them (which I don’t really mind — it leads to lovely butterflies at least) and perhaps a disease or some sun scorching on the brown bits. At any rate, not terribly healthy.)

Unhealthy leaf | Wolves in London

Yikes, not looking good…

The rosemary, at least, seems to thrive on my regime of intentional neglect:

Rosemary | Wolves in London

Long since eaten…

Next month, I promise you some flowers. I spotted a few sweet pea buds this morning and the gorgeous nigella is almost ready to show its face…

Garden moodboard: June

3 Jun

I love my garden, but it sometimes feels as if I am in constant battle with it. And it with me.

Garden moodboard June 2014 | Wolves in London

June moodboard, 2014: a mere selection for this month

When I first started taking photographs for these garden moodboards, in May last year, I imagined that by the following year my whole entire garden would look beautiful, not just the odd flower.

More than a year later, the beds are still a mass of weeds and mud and I couldn’t even begin to imagine photographing more than individual flowers to show you here… In all honesty, the overall picture outside is pretty horrendous.

Every time I go out there to do a spot of gardening like pruning or planting or thinning my plums (not a euphemism), I get distracted, instead, with pulling out bindweed and couch grass. Which then grows back with such force, that the next time I look there is even more in the same spot.

But it’s not just the weeds that seem to be standing in the way of my Chelsea-winning daydreams ever becoming reality.

A week ago, I planted 16 bean plants, up some lovely wigwams, with a slug beer trap placed right in the middle.

By this weekend, I had four paltry plants left. And those liberally covered with slug munched holes. By tomorrow, there will likely be nothing left at all.

Oh, sure, I’ve killed hundreds of slugs (possibly quite literally) in the beer trap. But I think they choose to have a nice supper of bean leaves first, before heading over for a post-prandial drink (and death, though they don’t know that in advance of course…)

Overall, it seems like I would need to work on my garden, undistracted, 9-5, seven days a week to have it looking even half presentable.

So, I particularly relish the chance to take my monthly moodboard photos. The best bits of the garden, on a nice clean white background; the weeds, slugs and unruly growth all edited out. (Except for that one time I showed you lots of weeds…)

This month is a bumper one for plants, but I was dashing round with the secateurs on Sunday while the baby, sproglet and hubby napped, so I was trying to be super quick before anyone started crying, and have only brought a few of my very favourites to show you.

Rose | Wolves in London

I am incorrectly claiming these pink roses as belonging to my little patch

The pink rose is in the front garden, growing over from the boundary with next door. Our side of the garden is the south facing side, so I suspect we have all the best roses to look at.

Nectaroscordum siculum (honey garlic) | Wolves in London

Sicilian wild honey garlic. Spoiler alert, it smells like garlic!

The honey garlic was in flower last month, but once the flowers are finished they start to point directly upwards into these amazing seedheads. (When actually in flower they droop downwards in a rather attractive weeping manner – see my pictures from last year.)

I’ve never picked these to come inside before, since I only have a few and they look so stately in the garden, right through into the winter months, but I was suprised — you may say somewhat stupidly, given the plants’ name — by how very garlicky this one smelt once I cut it off at the stem.

Verbena bonariensis | Wolves in London

Lovely, lovely verbena

Verbena flower | Wolves in London

…and it’s teeny tiny flowers

The verbena has been going strong for a good month now and will continue to do so until the end of summer. I adore it. The huge, tall spikes, topped with the vibrant purple, but such tiny delicate flowers. It’s one of my favourite plants in the garden.

Phlomis | Wolves in London

The bees adore the phlomis. I like it too.

Senecio cineraria | Wolves in London

Okay, I know I’ve shared about a hundred photos of this before, but it’s so very photogenic…

The front garden looks pretty good right now, I must say, with some towering blues and purples and a lower lying silver carpet, provided by this phlox and the Senecio cineraria.

Salvia | Wolves in London

By the afternoon, the salvia spikes were all limply pointing downwards in the heat…

Salvia spike | Wolves in London

Another one with tiny, delicate flowers

Daisy | Wolves in London

This plant just shouts, “Summertime!”

Out in the unruly back garden, the salvia and daisy I bought last week are now in the ground and brightening up an otherwise rather bare border.

Campanula | Wolves in London

Anyone know what species of campanula this is?

About the only other thing in flower there are some beautiful purple and white campanulas on spikes. They tend to droop downwards, so I need to plant something a bit more bushy underneath them, I think. (Again, not a euphemism. Why does everything gardening related seem to have a double meaning? Every time I type “front garden” or “bush” I giggle a little bit. Childish, I know…)

Astible | Wolves in London

Astilbe or not astilbe?

Finally, I think this white frothy thing is called astilbe. It grows in a great feathery profusion around the pond, just about managing to outcompete the bindweed.

It’s a tricky spot to weed, what with the danger of falling in, inaccessibility of the bit behind the pond, numerous frogs and tadpoles that I’m trying not to disturb and constant requests to the attendant sproglet to please stand back.

Blues, whites and silvers. My favourite garden colours. In reality it’s not quite as refined as this, of course, but I’m leaving the bright red and orange flowers – a legacy from the old owners – sitting happily in their beds.

Oh and one last picture. This little guy came inside on one of the plants so I couldn’t resist photographing him too. He’s pretty splendid, but moved around very quickly and wasn’t too keen to stop and pose for the camera.

Spider | Wolves in London

Definitely a spider…

And a postscript: a massive thank you to those who commented on yesterday’s post. I was really touched by the kind things everyone said and pleased to hear that this mish mash of a blog, with its random subjects, chosen only from what interests me personally, seems to interest others as well. I shall keep at it! Gardening, crafts, fabric, general chat and all…

Joining in, as ever, with Asa.

Garden moodboard: May

6 May

No brain power for much chat today, with a one-week-old newborn, but I did manage to pop out into the garden yesterday morning to gather some flowers for my May moodboard…

Garden moodboard May

(For once) I’ll just let the photos do the talking….

 

Bluebell

The bluebells are on their last legs now but have been brightening the garden for a good six weeks

Geranium

A lovely bright pink geranium

Rock rose

The rock rose I planted in the front garden after we moved in is doing very well, it’s covered in a huge spray of flowers

Grass seed heads

The grass seeds in the front garden always look beautiful at this time of year.

caption

If you’ve been reading the blog for a while, you might remember that there were more than 30 rhododendrons and azaleas when we moved in. We brutally dug most of them out, but I still have four or five dotted around the place. This one is my favourite…

 

Apple blossom

Last month, the plum tree was covered in blossom. This month has been all about the glorious pink buds on the apple trees. Almost all gone now, but I am hoping for a good harvest later in the year…

Rose bud

A bright pink rose bud

Yellow poppy

These colourful yellow poppies appear all over the place, self-seeding with wild abandon. Luckily, I love them…

Saxifrage

Finally, this delicate little flower is a saxifrage. I had mounds of it last year, though it’s not looking quite so happy this spring… It probably didn’t like the really wet winter.

This marks a full year since I started taking these photos. Interesting to compare this warm spring with what was in flower this time last year.

Joining in with Karin A.

Related articles:

Garden moodboard: April

4 Apr

After nearly a year of photographing these monthly garden moodboards, I’ve come to realise that getting the main shot is a little like taking a group family photo.

Garden moodboard April | Wolves in London

Spring has sprung!

You line everyone up neatly, check they’re standing in a good position, look through the lens, go back to the group, move someone a little, ask someone else to take off their glasses and, click, take what you think is a great photo. And it’s only when going through the photos later on your computer that you realise someone always had their eyes shut, or someone’s hair is blowing in the wind, covering up the face of the person to their left. And you scroll through all the photos, to discover that though you have one in which every individual person is looking good, there isn’t one of them all looking good together…

(My family are notorious eye closers. From all the events of the past few years — four weddings for each of my siblings, new babies, first birthday parties and so on — there is not one single photo where we all have our eyes open…)

This month, it was the artemisia letting the side down. Look at that photo above, everything looks magnificent except for the bit of slightly wilty green foliage, snuggling a little too close to the blossom and just generally looking a bit drab. But, the artemisia is a glorious little plant really, here it is showing off its colours with a little more panache.

Artemisia | Wolves in LondonArtemisia 'Powis Castle' | Wolves in LondonIt’s got lovely silvery foliage, covered in fine hairs, and it smells absolutely wonderful rubbed between your fingers. This cultivar is ‘Powis Castle’ – it’s growing in my front garden, but looking a bit bedraggled, overall, after being buried under scaffold planks and who knows what else for the most of the winter. I think I might need to take some cuttings and hope to start again with a sturdier plant now.

But it’s full on spring outside now, so there are plenty of lovely flowering plants as well. I’ve got two different types of bluey / purpley bulbs that I can’t identify. A big prize for anyone who can give me names for these two (small print: no actual prize will be forthcoming):

Update: a huge thanks to Philippa from Mini eats and Natalie from Slate grey, lime and hay for identifying both of these bulbs for me as, respectively, Scilla forbesii and Ipheion ‘Rolf Fiedler’

blue bulb | Wolves in London

Lovely blueish bulb flower. Is it is a scilla, perhaps?

Purple flower | Wolves in London

I had one solitary flower of these, but I didn’t feel too bad cutting it out, since it was at the very back of my garden completely out of eyesight

Others are more familiar to me. The gorgeous grape hyacinths are nearly over, but I managed to find a few still poking their heads up, though the bottom flowers on the stalk are already shedding seeds as you can just see here:

Grape hyacinth | Wolves in London

The bottom flowers are spent already, the middle ones have seeds waiting to spill…

The yellow primulas are still going strong as well. I know I showed you these last month, but I’ve since dug out my macro lens, so I thought they deserved a better close up photo this time round:

Primula | Wolves in London

It’s the colour of spring, isn’t it?

Ditto the last of the magnolia flowers, from next door’s front garden. I was reading something in my RHS magazine this month (uh huh, I’ve just subscribed, I’m getting serious about this gardening lark!) from a garden designer who said that in a small garden, every single plant has to perform to the fullest and provide interest in every season of the year. So he wouldn’t put any plants into a design that only had a short season of interest — no matter how appealing they were in that time. But the magnolia! I immediately thought to myself. How could you miss out on such a wonderful couple of weeks, even if it does very little for the rest of the year?

Magnolia stellata | Wolves in London

Magnolia stellata. A few weeks of glorious display, only, but fully worth its place in the flowerbed, in my opinion…

I planted lots of Leucojum aestivum bulbs (common name, Summer snowflake, says the RHS) in the front garden when we first moved in, though only a few have come through again this year. In the back garden, though, I’ve suddenly got loads around the pond, which is really beautiful. They look a lot like snowdrops, but grow on much taller stems.

Leucojum aestivum | Wolves in London

Just like a snowdrop. But not.

Most pleasing of all, though, is the proliferation of blossom on my plum tree. I hold out hope for a good plum crop this year, unlike last.

Plum blossom | Wolves in London

So delicate and so hard to photograph!

And for a little variety in colour, I had to show you a little of my forced rhubarb with it’s heavenly pink stems…

rhubarb | Wolves in Londonrhubarb stalk | Wolves in London…and these (what I think are) miniature tulips, with their red-and-yellow flowers:

Tulip | Wolves in London tulip | Wolves in LondonBut back into the front garden again for my last two plants. My batch of white snap dragons from last year have self-seeded back into the same pots and, so mild has it been, some have even started to flower, a good three or four months early:

Snapdragon bud | Wolves in LondonFinally, a little look at another silvery foliage plant, this gorgeous ‘Silver Dust':

Senecio cineraria 'Silver Dust'I grew it from seed a few years ago and am amazed at how it’s continued to thrive, despite usually being grown as an annual in this country…

Once I’d finished photographing all these little beauties, I bunged them into a tiny jar so I could continue to admire them. Sweet, no?

garden flower jar | Wolves in London

A thimble full of cuteness

Joining in, as every other month, with Karin and Asa.

Related articles:

  • If this is your thing, lots more moodboards to be seen here: Monthly garden moodboards
  • You can also see my pick of my fave photos from mine and others’ moodboards over on Pinterest

Garden moodboard: March

15 Mar

Isn’t Spring bloody great?

I’m practically elated to be back to my garden in time for this fabulous early March weather.

As I collected the flowers for these pictures, the sproglet was careening up and down the garden (as full as Spring fever as I am), the air was scented with blossom from next door’s tree and I could hear the chirruping of birds, the drone of bumble bees and the low ribbits of the frogs in the pond.

If that sounds too ridiculously bucolic for words, that’s pretty much how I felt as well.

March garden moodboard

Yellows, blues and whites just shout spring, don’t they?

We haven’t got a huge amount of flowers out there. Three months of building work has put paid to many of the beds closest to the house. But some bulbs have struck through regardless and there are buds on all the bushes and trees promising a feast of glorious things to come later.

Of course, I couldn’t find much to photograph these against, in among all the building detritus, so these are shown on a piece of beige plyboard. Classy, eh?

They may be slim pickings and they may be inadequately backdropped, but these lovely first signs of spring still make me smile…

Acer bud | Wolves in London

The promise of great things to come

Our acer tree has fabulous red stems and little furled buds that look as if they’ll be coming into leaf within a week or so.

Crocus | Wolves in London

Small but impressive

These purple and white crocuses have fought through against all the odds, a little cluster peeking out in the front garden, pushing their way through (quite literally) inches of dust, rubble and sawdust. I just love a garden survivor…

Daffodil | Wolves in London

It’s as good as feeling the sun on your face, looking at a cheery yellow daff

There are small little outbreakings of daffodils around the garden, though the couple of large pots with bulbs in are doing best. I think this might be something like a Narcissus ‘Tete a Tete’ as it’s quite short and riotously yellow (and obviously happy growing in pots with complete and utter neglect…)

Grape hyacinth | Wolves in London

Have I ever mentioned before (ahem) that I love blue flowers the most?

As I’m sure I’ve said a million times before, I just adore blue flowers. These lovely grape hyacinths are just poking their noses above the soil in a couple of places. I hope to be getting more as the month progresses…

Primula | Wolves in London

Another stalwart, unbothered by neglect, trampling or dust…

The good old Primula is another survivor. Not the most exciting plant in the world, in my opinion, but reliable and cheery.

Magnolia | Wolves in London

Oh the delicate papery magnolia!

And very much saving the best til last, my lovely magnolia flowers that grow over the front garden from the tree next door and which I claim as my own each year…

Spring. It’s really good to see you after what’s felt like a long and rather difficult Winter. Please stick around.

(And, just in case that all sounds a bit too good to be true, here’s the behind the scenes peek. We spent all of last weekend moving a huge pile of rubble into bags and then to the tip, so the “patio” outside the kitchen is now clear. But, ahem, as you can see, it needs a bit of love and attention still:)

Flowers on concrete

This looks bleak, I know, but trust me when I say this is major progress!

Joining in with Karin A.

Related articles:

  • I’m coming round to almost a whole year of garden moodboards now, take a look at them all if you’re so inclined: Garden moodboards.
  • My Pinterest board collects together some of my favourite moodboards each month, both from my blog and from others. Follow along there for lots of monthly garden loveliness…

Garden moodboard: February

17 Feb

It’s slightly ironic (in the non-Alanis Morissette sense of the word) that when I have horticulture exams to revise for, my garden becomes completely abandoned.

February garden moodboard

Sunshine, snowdrops and blossoms. I must remember to look back at this photo when the vile rain starts up again

Any spare time I have must be spent revising, not weeding, planting or pottering about with secateurs.

And so it is, that I am publishing my monthly garden moodboard 17 days late for February. I finally had time this weekend to wade out in my wellies and do a quick harvest of some snowdrops and a twig full of promising buds before the smell drove me back inside. I don’t want to revolt you by going into too much detail, but the front drive ain’t the only thing waterlogged around here, the drains on the patio out the back are full to capacity as well. Luverly.

Snowdrops

So delicate and cheering

On a nicer note, however, look at these adorable snowdrops! Galanthus nivalis in Latin, doncha know, and one of the first bulbs to flower every year.

There is an absolute plethora of different snowdrop varieties and some aficionados go crazy for them, paying up to £50 for a rare bulb. Me, I’m just quite happy with whatever bog standard variety likes to grow in the garden (no drains-related pun intended).

As I moved the snowdrops around to photograph them, they dropped their bright yellow pollen, which I thought was rather glorious.

Snowdrop pollensnowdrop bunchsnowdrop pollen

The moodboard’s a little sparse this month. Apart from the snowdrops, the only other thing I could find worth photographing was this tree / bush that was putting out some promising buds. I’m not sure what it is, a forsythia perhaps? Let me know in the comments if you have a better idea.

Branch in  budyellow buds

But the really, really exciting part of these photos is not the plants themselves but that other rare thing: sunlight.

I usually try and make sure there aren’t shadows in my moodboard photos, but I was so very excited to see the glorious sunshine peering through the window for the first time in weeks that I couldn’t bear to exclude it.

shadows

Actually, I just thought of one more exciting thing about these photos. They are set to be the last of my garden moodboards coming to you from the garden of my Mum’s house, rather than mine. If you check in here regularly, you’ll know we’ve been camped out in the home counties while renovation has been taking place at our actual London house. But we’re scheduled to move back in just under a fortnight now, a promise so exciting I hardly dare believe it’s true… Next month, once we’re home again, there will be more variety with my plant choices, I promise.

Joining in with Asa.

Related articles:

  • Take a look at last month’s garden moodboard: January 2014.
  • And I’ve added photos of all my moodboards, along with some of my favourites by other people, over at Pinterest: Garden moodboards.

Garden moodboard: January

13 Jan

Hot on the heels of my lateness with new year’s resolutions (or lack thereof) I am also running a good few weeks late with my garden moodboard for January.

Garden weed moodboard

A feast for Peter Rabbit

What can I say, it’s been pissing it down outside and there is not a single new plant to show you from my Mum’s garden since I took the photos last month

So, for my January moodboard, ladies and gentlemen, for one month only, I bring you the unloved, the unphotographed (many would say for good reason), the ever present but never desired… …I bring you the garden weed!

[Disclaimer: despite completing nearly a year of my horticulture classes now, I’m not actually that good at identifying weeds, so it is highly possible that a couple of these, come Spring time, might prove themselves to be wonderful garden plants rather than vicious interlopers.]

Garden weeds

Everything looks nicer in the sunshine…

garden weeds

How many do you recognise?

As I was taking the photos, the sun came out from behind one of the many clouds, and the weeds looked rather glorious, I thought, lush and green with the sun streaming through the window.

I can only identify a couple of these. The nettles, up close, have a beautiful toothed edge to their leaves. Perhaps this will be the year I finally get round to making some nettle fertiliser rather than just stinging myself on them.

Nettles

They’d be beautiful if they weren’t so vicious

There’s not really a huge amount to be said for the dandelions. They’re not terribly attractive in this state and though the amazing seed heads are undeniably beautiful you just don’t want to let them reach that stage and spread hundreds more of the plants into the garden… I suppose I could try eating the leaves in a salad, though, if times got really tough.

dandelion leaf

Tasty? Hmmm

dandelion

Curly, yes.

This one I’m not quite sure if it’s a weed or perhaps a geranium. Either way, something’s been enjoying a munch…

chewed leaf

Weed or trusty garden flower?

And this final one is really quite beautiful up close.

Garden weed

I Haven’t a clue what this is…

Perhaps not quite as attractive or varied as the flowers I’ve shown you before, but viewing them through my macro lens, this little weeds have rather grown on me (pun unintented)…

Next month, though, as long as we’re back in our own house, I promise you some proper garden plants. As long as they haven’t been totally destroyed by building dust, that is.

Joining in this month, as ever, with Karin A.

Related articles:

Garden moodboard: December

2 Dec

Since I haven’t seen our house for a fortnight now, I can only imagine what the garden is looking like in December. (Covered in builder’s tools, bricks and building dust I would guess…)

December garden moodboard by Wolves in London

Mmmm, winter’s here

Here at my Mum’s, I’ve a few evergreen plants to show you that really sum up the festive month of December. Actually, not many are ones I would choose to have in my own garden (especially the dratted ivy — I spent every weekend for a month a few summers back removing the ivy from my old flat) but there is no doubt that they scream Christmas is nearly here!

Evergreens

Can you hear them announcing the imminence of Christmas? No? Bend closer to your screen

I think these green and yellow leaves are from a shrub called Euonymus Fortunei ‘Emerald ‘n’ Gold,’ which we learnt about as a useful hedging plant in my gardening class a few weeks ago. My Mum’s is mostly green or yellow, which I cheerfully informed her means it’s reverting to its original colours and therefore needs a good prune. Still, the few variegated leaves that are there look rather nice:

Euonymus fortunei 'Emerald 'n' Gold'

Euonymus fortunei ‘Emerald ‘n’ Gold’ (don’t even get me started on the “n”…)

And while I wouldn’t have ivy in my garden again, I do think the variegated leaf varieties look really pretty and festive:

variegated ivy

This is a particularly nice leaf

Of course, a Christmas garden scene wouldn’t be complete without some berries. These orange ones, I am reliably informed, are pyracantha…

Pyracantha

Gorgeous bright colours against all the green

Somehow, the rose bush is still putting out a few flowers. I’m sure there is no rose that would intentionally flower in December, so it must just be due to our rather warm Autumn this year that a few are still hanging on. Jolly nice they are too. I do so love a white rose.

Rose

One of the last roses in the garden

Related articles:

  • I’ve put all my garden moodboards of the year onto a new board on Pinterest, so head over there if you’d like to see some more: Garden moodboards
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