I’ll light the fire. SoS: August 17, 2019.

‘I’ll light the fire, while you place the flowers in the vase that we bought today….’ Crosby, Stills Nash and Young

Today is a taste of Spring: a cold start, but later warm, sunny and still. Warm enough to sit outside and have a morning coffee and enjoy the collection of succulents in the blue bowl bought from the Growers’ Market earlier. Warm enough to be outside in shirt sleeves and warm enough for the bees to be busily foraging amongst any available blooms they can find.

Later on this evening when the sun sets, we’ll light the fire because the nights are still cold. There’s a lot of sport to watch: the Rugby in NZ and the cricket in England. A long night ahead!

One: Always early to make an appearance, Candytuft , Iberis sempervirens, with its spotless white flowers indicates that Spring is on its way.

Two: The aforementioned bowl of succulents sitting prettily on the outdoor table.

Three: Sunshine pours down on the bees bombarding the Prunus blireana. I stood on a stepladder to achieve this photo and bees flew around my head. The tree is bumbling and buzzing with them.

Four: Banksia blechnifolia. Such a quirky Banksia with its almost prehistoric fern-like leaves and unusual flowers, which actually sit on the ground. As it’s a Western Australian plant, I’m quite surprised that it’s growing well in my garden where it isn’t getting any specialised treatment and is happily doing its own thing.

Five: Another plucky viola. It must be two that I planted together without noticing, but they make a fetching combination.

Six: Two Narcissi are flowering. They look a little lonely in the front garden, and I hope they’ll be joined by others before too long.

As ever, Six on Saturday is hosted by the Propagator. Follow this link to see a variety of other gardens and enjoy plants and flowers from different countries.

Weather today: Brilliantly sunny. 0 – 22 degrees C.

34 Comments Add yours

  1. Fred says:

    The Banksia are really amazing plants. Too bad that it does not succeed here…
    I see that the first signs of spring come to you with these narcissi and the prunus blooming . Enjoy!

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you, Fred. Yes, Spring is coming, but still some more cold weather first. I feel there must be some Banksias that would survive cold weather. We have had frosts this year down to -6 degrees and I think there are some that survive in the mountains. Banksia canei is one, but it might be difficult to source.

  2. Good to see your garden waking up. Let’s hope the rain stays away from Lord’s

    1. Jane says:

      Thanks, Derrick. So far so good at Lords. Weatherwise at least.

  3. Glen ivers says:

    Youre house , is a very very fine house

    1. Jane says:

      No cats in the yard, though.

  4. Anonymous says:

    How lovely for you to be having the first taste of Spring. Candy tuft did well here last year and I had a couple of self-seeded plants spring up this year. Love that Banksia – what an unusual plant!

    1. Jane says:

      My candytuft plants haven’t self seeded ( I wish they would) but it grows easily from cuttings. The Banksia is grabbing all the attention and you’re correct, it is unusual, even for a Banksia!

  5. Gill Heavens says:

    Wow I had to look a couple of times at the Banksia to work it out, fascinating! Love that spring is coming to you, can’t help but feel a little bit jealous.

    1. Jane says:

      Thanks, Gill. It’s rather a weird plant to look at, that Banksia. I’m not sure I even like it, but it sure has interest value. And it flowers when not much else does, so that’s useful.

  6. Wonderful banksia, so alien to me!

    1. Jane says:

      Alien is a good word to describe it. Thanks, Cathy.

  7. Jude says:

    Glen beat me to it!

    The Banksia is a little weird, looks like a nest of spiders to me, and I’m not keen on spiders… but the rest of your six are lovely. How nice to see blossom! And I do like the Iberis sempervirens. That would look nice in my wall. I wonder if S&S like it though.

    1. Jane says:

      The Banksia certainly is an oddity, Jude. As for the Iberis, it is a plant that is completely undemanding here and copes with everything the weather throws at it. It doesn’t care about soil either. The SnS ignore it completely, except perhaps to use it as a shelter as it’s quite dense. I’d say go ahead. Buy several!

  8. Kris P says:

    I’m glad to hear that your weather has improved some and that you’re able to get outside an actually enjoy it. I like that odd Banksia a lot. That’s a genus I’ve never really warmed up to but perhaps I just haven’t come across the right species. The plants aren’t commonly found in nurseries here either.

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you, Kris. It’s going to be 25 degrees today (Sunday)! Perhaps you might like to look at a Banksia spinulosa. The flowers are not too extreme in their shape or colour and it’s a nice rounded prostrate form. I think it would do well in your garden.

  9. rusty duck says:

    What a coincidence.. at a plant fair yesterday I bought Banksia blechnifolia. It was love at first sight when I saw the foliage. It will be a challenge for me to keep it but if I succeed it will be my little bit of Australia. Probably in a container so I can keep it out of the winter cold and wet. The chap who sold it to me explained how it grows prostrate across the ground. It’s most unusual.

    1. Jane says:

      That’s amazing RD. A blechnifolia far away in the UK! Reading up on them yesterday, I discovered they are happy in pots. Ours doesn’t have to deal with wet (of course!) but it has been through quite a number of -6 mornings with heavy frost during winter and apart from a few brown leaves, which may have been from old age anyway, it hasn’t missed a beat. The main thing will be to have free draining soil that’s lacking in phosphorus. But you have probably looked into that already. So good luck with it, I hope it does well for you.

  10. Granny says:

    We visited a friend recently who actually had her fire on! In our mid-summer! Nice reminder of early spring.

    1. Jane says:

      That does seem early for fires! Thanks, Granny.

  11. We’ve had a very mild August so far, with mid 20s temperatures. I noticed the other day while we were driving all the flowering peaches are in bloom. Your garden will be wonderful in a few weeks.

    1. Jane says:

      Spring is upon us! Each day there’s something new to see in the garden. Still no rain here though.🙁

  12. More cold to come, but against that, the daffodils are out and throughout the winter we had the gloriously flowering cyclamen.
    As for those winter nights and watching TV, we wished we could watch cricket and other sports but apart from world soccer, we find ourselves still unable to understand the rules of cricket or rugby.
    Agathy Christy on Saturday night and the occasional Endeavour with the ABC Drum is our main diet of TV watching.

    1. Jane says:

      I remember your beautiful cyclamen, Gerard, such a boost in the winter. I expect you’re beginning to see spring flowers appearing, as we are.

  13. Cath@Home says:

    love the spring blossom….will have to wait a little longer here in Tas…only the ornamental something-or-other is flowering atm. That Banksia is very quirky….I have never seen or heard of that variety before…..popping over from six on saturday…have a great week ahead

    1. Jane says:

      I’m a bit late replying, so perhaps you’re seeing some signs of spring by now. Thanks for your visit.

  14. The primus blossom is looking very nice and good to see more daffodils. I’m starting to look through catalogues for Spring bulbs.

    1. Jane says:

      It’s a nice thing to do, isn’t it…planning for next spring. Happy shopping!

  15. That blossom photo is beautiful. I’m a big fan of Candytuft. It flowers for months. Funny to think Spring is on its way there while over here summer will be on its way out.

    1. Jane says:

      I’m always sustained by the lovely spring and summer photos posted by northern hemisphere gardeners while I’m enduring winter here!

  16. Chloris says:

    The banksia is amazing and fabulous blossom.

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you Chloris.

  17. Lora Hughes says:

    Ah, spring. I wish we could do a little bit of autumn, then skip to spring along w/you. Love the banksia!

    1. Jane says:

      Hi Lora, it’s strange that winter is something to be ‘got through’. I wish I could take more pleasure in it, but this winter has been pretty hard on the garden, especially with the lack of rain. The Banksia certainly is an oddity!

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