Bi-color Monkshood makes a lovely addition to the garden

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Bi-color Monkshood buds

Monkshood Aconitum

Our bi-color monkshood has started to bloom. It’s a lovely flower. A little unusual looking but lovely just the same. I should have tried to get a photo of the foliage as well as it’s quite nice.

I grow two types of Monkshood. The second type doesn’t bloom until the end of August thought – it’s the Azure monkshood and it’s absolutely lovely. Don’t worry there’ll be photos when it blooms.

Bi-color Monkshood Mature Flower

Monkshood Aconitum

I grow this monkshood in the far corner of my garden near some roses and our very very slow growing holly tree. It spruces up the area when it’s in bloom.

Do you grow any unusual or less common types of plants?

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Working in the garden – Spring cleaning

Well I managed to finally get out into the Garden on Sunday. It was a lovely day and it was high time that I got out there to tidy up my garden and begin pruning the roses.

Last Autumn I didn’t even manage to put my garden to bed. By this I mean I didn’t do the usual winter protection. I was just too ill. So I’d have to say that I really haven’t done much in my garden at all since perhaps last September and at that time it was mainly only watering the garden.

That’s 7 months of not doing any garden work. Do you know how my body is feeling right now?

I was outside for about five hours. Once I got started I couldn’t make myself stop. Surprisingly I felt pretty good while I was working away. However once I got back inside I began to notice that my back was stiffening up. Now the bottom of my left foot is numb. I guess I must have a pinched nerve in my back! Oh the damage I do to myself when I garden. I tell you – it’s an extreme sport for me.

There are so many plants growing it’s unbelievable! Some are way ahead of themselves. For instance, my daffodils rarely make an appearance before mid-May, yet I have two that are up and blooming and more to come. Some of my supposedly later blooming Tulips are also up and about to bloom. What else was growing well? Strawberry plants, raspberry canes, several clematis, helebores, columbine, monkshood, toad lilies, regular lilies, oriental lilies, several types of tulip, hyacinth, muscari, lavender, Chionodoxa, snow drops, sedum, astilbe, geranium, new york asters, phlox, hostas, trilliums, peonies, rudbeckia, honeysuckle vines and on and on. I’m sure I’ve missed some of the perennials that I saw out there.

I believe that most of the roses will end up surviving. There’s a lot of dead branches but there’s life in the lower areas. Some are quite hardy and are already leaving out at the tips and upper branches. I didn’t survey each rose because I was trying to systematically work my way through the garden one area at a time.

I think I managed to tidy up half of the back garden beds. If my body cooperates I’ll go back outside later today and try to finish up the back. Then I’ll have to do the side of the house, the front garden and boulevard. Oh my … it’s a lot of work!

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