The Bird Bath

When I planned the Oval Bed a couple of years ago I imagined a birdbath in the centre of the ‘keyhole’. Something natural, made of local stone. Either light granite, which is common here on the edge of the Bavarian Forest, or limestone which is typical for areas along the River Danube.

Well, the bed took shape and was planted up. I initially wanted to call it The Bird Bath Bed, but without a bird bath that seemed inappropriate! 🙃Here it is in late May 2020.

And so the search for a bird bath began. Spring 2020 was perhaps not the best time to make any progress, but in the summer a few stone masons were visited, online shops were studied, but nothing seemed right.

I mentioned this to friends this spring, and not long after our friend Kurt offered me a huge lump of limestone, typical for the region where we used to live. I hesitated. It would mean chiselling out a dip in it for the water. But when my Man of Many Talents visited him soon after, Kurt had already made the shallow dip in the top surface of the stone!

So the stone sat in our yard for a long time, and the Oval Bed filled out in the spring and summer. Here it is in June of this year…

But then, yesterday, the forks were mounted on the tractor,  the stone was gently lifted, and everso everso carefully it was finally transported…

… round to the garden behind the house.

My Man of Many Talents had already measured it up and dug a hole exactly the right size and depth just where I wanted it.

It was slowly lowered in…

… and then with a bit of shovelling around we got it straight and filled in the edges with stones and soil. I quickly tidied up  the edges of the keyhole for the final photos.

The late afternoon light was perfect.

I am very happy with it. A big heartfelt THANK YOU to Kurt!

Today I ceremoniously poured some water into the indentation and now I am waiting for the birds to discover it. 🙂

In a Vase on Monday: Fizz, Fluff and Froth

Earlier in the week I picked all the pink Larkspur in the Moon Bed in the hope that any seedlings next year will be just blue or white. Well, the Larkspur looked lovely alone in its vase, but it would look even better if I added some frothy white Queen Anne’s Lace I thought.

As usual, one thing led to another and I found some wild Achillea milleflorum that had a pink tinge to it. Then I saw my pink Gypsophila was in flower. And a white Cosmos ‘Fizzy White’ looked pretty. And I just had to cut a couple of those gorgeous outlandish pink fluffy spikes from the Sanguisorba.

And so my vase evolved and I must say I rather like all that fizz, froth and fluff!

Why not join Cathy at Rambling in the Garden for this lovely Monday meme. 😃

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Happy Gardening!

Buddleia davidii ‘Nanho Blue’

Buddleias are pretty tough plants and the only one I have ever lost was a dwarf one in the old garden after a very hard winter. This spring I was certain I had pruned mine back too early and a late frost appeared to have finished them off… a disaster for my Butterfly Bed where four different shrubs are the main focus of the bed.

I was wrong. By May they were all sending out shoots with new leaves appearing daily. Now they are back to the size they were last summer and the first flowers are opening. I am writing this down as a record to remind myself not to panic again next spring!

My favourite is Buddleia davidii ‘Nanho Blue’ (also called Buddleia davidii v. nanhoensis). This was featured in my vase last Monday (see here) and a few comments prompted me to take a second look at this shrub.

The reason I love it is partly for the fragrance of its flowers, which is not as overpowering as some. But the main reason is its foliage. The leaves are narrow – longer and thinner than other buddleias – and smoother too. As with my other buddleias they are also silvery. The combination of the smooth silver with the blue flowers is rather attractive, but even when it is not in flower it looks pretty. It retained most of its leaves throughout the winter as well, although they do look a bit worse for wear by the time I prune it in spring.

The flowers are also longer and thinner than other buddleia I have grown.

But what stood out in the photos of my vase the other day was the bubbly clusters of petals on each panicle.

This occurs on most of the flower heads it seems, and the effect is rather pretty. I think most of my buddleia have similar clusters, but because they are shorter and fatter flower heads it isn’t noticeable once they are in full bloom.

I planted a second Nanho Blue in the Oval Bed. This one is still quite compact….

 …… but the one in the Butterfly Bed is already about 2m tall and at least 1.5m wide. It isn’t supposed to get any bigger than that….

I will have to post some more photos once it is in full bloom… preferably with a few butterflies on it. 😉🦋

I think almost every garden has a buddleia, doesn’t it? So which buddleias have you grown and do you have a favourite? Are they invasive in your part of the world? Do they grow in warmer climates?

Thanks for reading and have a great gardening weekend!