Red alert

The first crocosmia to flower for us is Lucifer and what a wonderful one it is. I started off a few years ago with just 10 corms and now we seem to have hundreds! They really do make an imposing statement wherever they are planted – you certainly couldn’t miss them – and they last for a good month earning their space in the garden.

Lucifer flowers a lot earlier than the other crocosmias that we have and has finished by the time the others start, leaving lovely seedheads to decorate the border.

Solfaterre is now flowering – much smaller and nowhere near as vigorous- a soft yellow with brownish coloured leaves, a lovely plant but I wish it was a little more robust.

A friend, Jean, gave me an unamed yellow one, a bright yellow and multiplying rapidly. I think I will move it somewhere near  my dark blue Agapanthus, they should go well together. The strong yellow will contrast beautifully with the deep blue.

I also have a small red one, I don’t know where it came from but it suddenly appeared in the bog garden- not somewhere that I  would have planted it, but it seems happy there so there it can stay.One of the  last ones to flower for me is Star of the East, another one that seems reluctant to multiply. This has a larger orange flower, very open  – maybe I ought to try moving it to make it happier!

Star of the East

Another late one is rather similar with beautiful butterscotch markings in the centre, this is Emily McKenzie with very open flowers, another lovely plant.

Emily McKenzie

Blue Balls Make an Entrance

Agapanthus are summer bulbs which certainly have the “wow” factor. They have the same large round heads of the earlier alliums and are just as good for the visiting bees.

A few years ago we had a fantastic holiday in the Scilly Isles and saw masses of them almost growing wild. I have been hooked ever since, buying a few more each year to try and replicate the scenes that we saw on that holiday. We have bulbs of varying shades of blue, my favourites are really dark , with a few white ones dotted through for contrast

Most of them are in our “bee and butterfly” border which is at the side of our driveway and the insect visitors certainly seem to be finding plenty of food when they arrive. The flowers last for about a month and are then followed by beautiful seedheads.

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