Seeds, bulbs, and ‘Woodland Distant Lover’. Feb 27, 2021.

As I’m not at home this Saturday, I cheated a little and prepared my post beforehand, so these photos were taken a couple of days ago.

Hylotelephium Herbstfreude was once called Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’, and personally I wish it had stayed that way. Much easier to spell and a humble name for a humble plant, one that is thoroughly reliable no matter what the conditions. However, Wikipedia tells me that Hylotelephium means ‘woodland distant lover’, so that’s rather nice and more interesting than ‘stonecrop’ (another name for sedum) which has a harsh and unlovable sound. Apparently it was once thought that this plant could indicate when one’s affections were returned.

Another reliable performer is Rosa ‘Iceberg’ which flowers like this many times a year as I cut it right back after each flowering. If I don’t, it keeps on growing and becoming overactive like one of those tube men often seen at service stations – arms waving madly all over the place. A few weeks after pruning, the flowers are back again as strongly as ever. Black spot rarely visits this rose, so that’s another bonus.

I ordered this persimmon ‘Fuyu’ a year ago after seeing a magnificent fruit-laden specimen in a local garden, and quite soon afterwards forgot that I had done so. A recent call from the local nursery to inform me that they’d finally been able to source one, threw me into a quandary as the garden is now quite full of trees and shrubs and a spot needs to be found for it.

This is our prunus ‘blireana’, one of the first trees we planted in this garden and now nearly seven years old. It looks as though we’re in the middle of winter, because during the week, without so much as a by-your-leave, it dropped most of its leaves. There is no outward sign of trouble: insects and fungi are absent and the weather hasn’t been overly hot. Internet research has turned up nothing so if anyone has any ideas, I’ll be very happy to hear them.

This is a slightly premature photo of seeds planted recently. Present are Hollyhock ‘Black Knight’ (thank you, John from Ballarat) which emerged very quickly, and Ratibida columnifera aka Mexican Hat Flower, which were also early out of the blocks. Planted slightly later are African Poppy (Papaver atlanticum), White Burnet (Sanguisorba tenuifolia), Verbena, Flanders Poppy, Rocky Mountain Penstemon (Penstemon strictus) and Blandfordia punicea or Christmas Bells. Blandfordia are lovely Australian natives and I don’t rate my chances of success very highly with them. I’ll be overjoyed if they germinate and even more so if they ever reach the flowering stage

My record with seeds is not very good, but I have been looking after them carefully including moving them out of the way of any marauding S&S each night.

Lastly, some bulbs I purchased on the last visit to the nursery. I wasn’t going to buy any more bulbs, but there you have it. Gardener’s weakness: the inability to leave a nursery empty-handed!

‘Jet Fire’ on the left looks like it will be able to assist with Mars landings eventually.

That’s it for this week. To read about other gardens, visit the Propagator’s blog where gardeners celebrate the seasonal offerings in their gardens. As northern hemisphere gardens wake up from their winter sleep there are beautiful emerging bulbs to admire and desire!

Happy reading and gardening, everyone.

43 Comments Add yours

  1. Derrick John Knight says:

    Well done for maintaining your record

  2. Prue Batten says:

    Love your selection, Jane, except for the denuded tree and have no idea what could be wrong. Except that this has been the most awful summer in our neck of the woods. If it has in yours, would that affect it?

    1. Jane says:

      Prue, we’ve had a beautiful summer. It hasn’t been too hot and we’ve had a good amount of rain. I do hope the tree survives as it’s so pretty in the Spring.

  3. fredgardener says:

    Nice choice for the persimmon. I didn’t know you could grow it there with your climate… Full of tasty fruit in a few years.
    Amazing white roses !

    1. Jane says:

      I expect we might have to wait quite a few years for the tree to bear fruit. I love their appearance after the leaves fall with their orange fruit glowing on the tree.
      Yes, the roses are very successful in that spot at the front of the house.

  4. Rosa ‘Iceberg’ is stunning. Sedums will always be sedums to me. Yours is lovely. Great photo of the bee.

    1. Jane says:

      Hooray, a vote for ‘Sedum’. I think that’s what they’ll always be for me too. Bees love them.

  5. Well, I hope you don’t have any future spaceships diverting to your garden next spring, that did produce a chuckle. 😉😀 I don’t like the look of your Prunes tree, see what happens next year. I’m a big fan of sedums and that rose is stunning.

  6. I did type Prunus……..that so and so predictive text!😡

    1. Jane says:

      I wouldn’t mind a ‘prune’ tree, Granny. I’m quite partial to them especially in a tart!

  7. Love your sedums. I always have problems with seeds and usually let nature plant them and then transplant the seedlings where I want them. It is hard not to buy more plants. I’m just glad it’s plants I collect and not cats.

  8. Sedum is definitely easier, but now that you’ve explained the meaning Hylotelephium as ‘distant woodland lover’, that really is quite evocative! Yours is a great specimen.

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you Sel. I agree!

  9. John Hric says:

    Green, growing, and blooming. The colors are much appreciated here up north ! Thanks

    1. Jane says:

      My pleasure. The colours of your Daylilies are always appreciated too.

      1. John Hric says:

        Thank you on both counts.

  10. Kris P says:

    I hope you’re having a good time, wherever you are this weekend, Jane! I love your Sedum/Hylotelephium, which is one succulent I struggle to grow in southern California. I have a ‘Fuyu’ persimmon and, although the critters take the fruit before it’s ripe, it’s one of very few plants that offer beautiful fall color in my climate. Re your Prunus, you may want to look into whether the tree is susceptible to Phytopthora ramorum, the pathogen that causes “sudden oak death”. It also causes sudden death in a wide range of other plants, including a native Heteromeles arbutifolia in my garden. I saw at least one reference to it affecting Prunus species in Europe and Japan. It can enter your garden in tainted nursery soil.

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you for your diagnosis, Kris. It might be bad news for my Prunus. It’s a pity you can’t grow Sedum as I thought it would grow almost anywhere, but you have many other wonderful plants to compensate!
      We had a trip to Sydney for a birthday celebration with family and had a most enjoyable time, thank you.

  11. Gerrie Mackey says:

    I love your photo of the Sedum with the bee, the flower is very pretty close-up. We recently acquired a Sedum and it is a most rewarding plant… very low maintenance. Your Iceberg rose look stunning, mine needs another prune after the rain.

    1. Jane says:

      Thanks Gerrie. I have to admit that the photo of the bee on the Sedum was taken by Mr MG as I was having difficulty achieving one clear enough to include. The two inherited Icebergs at the front of our house unsung heroes for me – I’m sure they would flower all year if I didn’t prune them right back in July.

  12. Jim Stephens says:

    There are a couple of diseases of cherries mentioned on the RHS website which affect cherries over here. Here’s the link. I reckon if the remaining leaves are alive, even if not in good condition, then it’s probably a foliar disease and will recover next season. If it were disease in the roots or trunk I would expect all the leaves to be wilting as if they couldn’t get water and the prognosis would be bad.

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you for your reply and link, Jim. I think I will clean up all the fallen leaves and leave the prunus and wait to see what happens next spring.

  13. Good luck with the seeds. I find it very difficult to get good results so I hope you’re more successful than I am usually. I have a pink iceberg which flowers beautifully and then has a big rest. Perhaps I need to follow your lead and cut it back further after flowering.

    1. Jane says:

      I purchased the seed from a specialist seed place, so they’re not the usual ones found in large hardware shops – I’m sure you know where I mean- and consequently I’m hoping for better results than my usual efforts.
      I must say I’m no expert on pruning, but I do find mine are better if I cut off about 50 cm between flowerings. A pink iceberg might not be as hardy.

      1. Fingers crossed you get good results. I always try to cut back to a new shoot when I cut roses, but you’ve got me thinking I should be more vigilant in trimming them better.

  14. There’s nothing wrong with preparing your post in advance – that’s what I do!

    I must admit, I can’t see myself using Hylotelephium instead of Sedum – I find it difficult to pronounce it and no one knows what your talking about when you say it! Interesting meaning though – I had no idea.

    They were talking about Persimmons on Gardener’s Question Time this week – it was about growing them in the UK so it’s probably not so useful for you, but very interesting all the same.

    1. Jane says:

      Thanks for your reply. A spot has been found for the persimmon (I think!) so that’s the next job. I think it will be a long time before I can post photos of fruit, but I’ll enjoy seeing the tree grow.

  15. Cathy says:

    Funny that you are sowing seeds the same time as us in the northern hemisphere! I sowed Verbena and a black hollyhock a couple of days ago too! 😃 The rose is beautiful. Good luck with the persimmon. By the way, the common name for Sedum here in Bavaria is ‘Fette Henne’ – fat hens! I use that name not because it is particularly nice, but simply because it reminds me of my partner’s Grandma who grew them in abundance and loved them. 😃

    1. Jane says:

      I think ‘fat hens’ is pretty cute!
      Some of my seeds have fallen prey to white fly and snails (or slugs). Oh dear. It looks as though round two of planting is upon me.

  16. The ladies of my mother’s generation called Sedum House Leeks = though I like Autumn Joy…people stopped planting Purpleleaf Plum in the American South due to stem canker and fungal problems.

    1. Jane says:

      I do hope that isn’t what the problem with my plum is. It sounds very serious.

      1. You would see oozing spots on the trunk..

  17. They will always be Sedums to me because I can neither remember or pronounce the new name! The iceberg rose looks great and must be very happy to produce all those flowers. The persimmon sounds a very interesting choice. I hope you manage to squeeze it in somewhere.

    1. Jane says:

      Oh good, another vote for Sedum! I feel the same way, although I do like the translation of the ‘other’ name.
      We’ve found a spot for the persimmon, so I hope to be able to post photos of it fruiting….probably in a couple of years time!

  18. After seeing other SOS’s Sedum plants, I finally invested in one, but it is tiny! Your Autumn Joy is lovely! The Iceberg looks lovely. It’s too hot and humid here for most roses, but I persist! I haven’t started sowing seeds yet, so I guess I had better make a start on that soon!

  19. Jane says:

    If the one you bought is Autumn Joy, I think it will grow very quickly. I pulled some bits off the side of mine and planted them in the garden about a week ago, so hopefully they’ll take.
    It’s typical of gardeners to try and grow things that aren’t really ‘suited’! My garden has plenty of plants like that!😄

  20. Anonymous says:

    I try to say Hylowhatsit but they’re still Sedums really. I hope the Prunus survives

    1. Jane says:

      😊 only time will tell, with the Prunus, I think.

  21. annamadeit says:

    Ha! I suffer from that exact same weakness. Not sure what to think of your defoliated tree. After our massive wildfires last year, many trees responded by turning to fall colors quite prematurely. Could it be an external influence of some sort that threw it off balance?

    1. Jane says:

      Hi Anna, I’m hoping the leaf drop is down to the cooler weather we’ve had this summer, now autumn, of course. So that’s an external influence, I guess. There’s been no sign of any problems since I posted, so I don’t think it’s insects or disease. I’ll have to wait now until spring.

  22. annamadeit says:

    Oh good to hear that it’s holding steady! Heard on the radio today that Australia has had unusual amounts of rain, resulting in flooding, and I thought of you. Hope all is well with you and your garden.

    1. Jane says:

      Thank you for your thoughts, Anna. Luckily for us, we’re not in a flood prone area. The rain has been relentless, and my garden is waterlogged, but that’s nothing compared to the catastrophic conditions some people are experiencing. The rain is supposed to clear tomorrow and I think everyone on the eastern side of the country will breathe a sigh of relief.

      1. annamadeit says:

        Glad you’re safe and in an unaffected spot! I heard some more reports today, and it sounded just awful.

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