Sunday, 25 August 2013


I don't know if it's the same in the USA, or indeed in other parts of the UK, but down here in Bournemouth there is definitely an autumnal chill in the air first thing in the morning, and last thing in the evening. A sense of winding down a little in the plant world, and the next phase in the growing season. Secateurs are out daily again, to cut back and dead head. Certain things, such as Agapanthus and Crocosmia, get to keep their seed heads on, as they are quite attractive and won't flower any more anyway. Others, such as Gazanias and Cannas, will keep producing more flowers until October if dead headed regularly. A lot of herbaceous perennials have one main flowering period, but some, such as the Heuchera below, will continue to throw up the odd flower spike if kept tidy.

Spring/summer pruning brings problems such as birds nests, and we have to go very carefully indeed during that time, particularly when hedge trimming. If we come across one, then the entire area is left alone. At this time of year though, the birds have flown, and all that's left are the empty nests.
 It's also time to tidy up the Chamaerops humilis, and if there are those of you out there who have done this, then you will know why they can be tricky. Although it's a bank holiday weekend, we decided to work yesterday, as there was a lot to do at a couple of particularly nice places. It wasn't like work really, with being able to do what we want, when we want and for as long as we wanted to. The residents at both places are truly lovely people as well, and so we gladly set about our work at the first place with happy hearts. That is until the Chamaerops were reached. We were both working at opposite ends of a difficult border. My end had a rockery that plunged steeply, and Amanda had the Chamaerops end. As you can see from the picture, the stems are killers, with the thorns facing upwards towards ones secateuring hands as they head down to snip. Let me just say that there were words coming out of my sweet wifes mouth that I never thought possible, as she received stab after stab, and to also find the pain increase after several minutes.
And so dear reader, why the title 'Aquaria'?
We were kindly given tickets to see the show of the same title during it's brief time at the Bournemouth International Centre. What can I say of the show? Breathtaking, spellbinding, visual, colourful. It's kind of like watching something in 3D while on LSD. Still not sure of quite what it was that we witnessed, but it was still really quite amazing. What do you think?
It's Sunday morning now, and we are on the second cup of tea. Our second Acacia tree pruning is on the cards for today, and it will get done. I did however treat myself to a new fishing reel yesterday, and so I think a little fishing later may also be on the cards. Will tell you all about it soon.


  1. Definitely a nip of autumn here this week. But on the plus side it means our daughter will be returning from Canada where she's been working all summer. Can't wait to see her!
    That plant is vicious!!!

    Enjoy your bank holiday tomorrow - we don't get a holiday in Scotland...

  2. Hot and humid in Scotland.
    Good to see you sparing the nests.

  3. It is still hot and humid here in s.e. FL. I've been hearing thunder south of us this morning, and rain is in the forecast, which we need.

    Poor Amanda, those thorns look wicked and I'm sure would have unladylike words coming out of my mouth too. :-)

    As for Aquaria ~ bazaar, beautiful and creepy in my opinion. What a lot of work and concentration goes into that, amazing.

    Have a great week ~ FlowerLady

  4. We are really feeling like summer again. Sunny, windy and hot.
    Very heartened to hear you let the birds nest in peace while working. We try to leave the wildlife alone too.
    Aquaria looks much like cirque du soleil. Amazing! I marvel at the performers strength and agility in addition to all the special effects and costumes.
    Hope that new reel does well for you.
    Enjoy the day!

  5. Here in Ontario, the nights are cool but the days are still pretty warm.
    Your post inspires me to do a bit more pruning, which is one thing I am not motivated to do at this time of the year. I know the season is coming to a close and it is easy to let things go, knowing that winter will solve the problem. However, in the mean time, the garden would look better for some more pruning.

  6. What a wicked-looking stem, careful handling needed from Amanda!
    Yes, there is a definite feel of autumn. At least we have had a summer this year!

  7. Get your lovely wife some elbow high rose pruning sturdy gloves to work worth next time. It was cool here, not hot and humid. take care way over there!