Bavarian Horticultural Show, Ingolstadt 2021

 

As many of you know already, I live in Bavaria in the south of Germany. Bavaria is one of 16 federal states in Germany, and every year each has their own regional horticultural show. The 2020 show was postponed last year, but took place this year instead, and was in Ingolstadt (known perhaps best for being home to Audi car manufacturers). This is just a 90 minute drive from us, and having lived there for many years I could not miss this opportunity! So I picked up a friend on the way and we made a day of it. 😃

Here are some of my impressions…

There were some long beds of perennials leading off the main square like sun rays and I was impressed with both the dramatic planting and the size and vigour of the plants…

(Click on any photo to enlarge)

A lot of lilies were still flowering, and the combination with Coreopsis, Agastache and Heleniums made quite an impact.

The first asters were also flowering. Grasses played a major role in all the gardens, which appealed to me in particular.

A few beds along pathways were reserved for annuals. And these were amazing!

Color themes were red and orange, orange and blue, or grey and pink…

Some of the small show gardens were really imaginative…

I really loved this view…

 

A few were nothing special, but there was always an element for inspiring, such as the raised bed idea here, and the firepit using decorative stone and paving with a cute little bench…

Inspiration…

Not sure we need one of these…

But one of these is on my wishlist. It rocks gently, and of course we tried it out! 😉

And this grass is on my wishlist too: Panicum virgatum ‘Northwind’…

So many lovely vistas, flowers and ideas…

The show is being held all summer and covers 23 hectares on the edge of the city, with large open expanses, and a small lake on one side. It will remain a park after the show, and will be such a treasure for the city dwellers. I do hope more trees will be planted there, making it into a haven for birds and insects as well as people.  😃

Have you been able to visit a garden show this summer? (I might even visit this one again soon! 😉)

 

The ‘Edge in July: Sunflowers et al.

One day in April I sowed some sunflower seeds in pots and placed them on a windowsill.

Some time later they were big and brave enough to be planted out in the garden, in the newest bed.

The sun shone, it rained, and they grew. Can you see them among the other shrubs?

And they grew some more, and as I wrote in my post here, they got so tall so quickly that they were almost uprooted in a storm early July, so they got some nice robust stakes to prop them up…

As promised then, an update on the sunflowers…. Well, the bed has filled out tremendously!

The ‘Edge is a long curved bed that is being planted as an open ‘hedge’, marking the edge of the flower garden. As fillers this year I planted Sunflowers and Tithonia.

They are a mix of seeds I had left from previous years…

Oranges, reds and golden yellow are the theme in this bed…

 

The shrubs I put in are doing well and perennials are currently providing summer colour, but I will plant spring bulbs this autumn too.

A favourite combination is the Physocarpus ‘Lady in Red’ with these Monarda ‘Gardenview Scarlet’…


And this Heliopsis (‘Sommersonne’) is wonderful. It started flowering early July…

The Crocosmia (‘Lucifer’) goes nicely with the deep red Gaillardia ‘Burgunder’ and Cosmos Xanthos.

Here is the Gaillardia close up…

Heuchera ‘Black Pearl’ has proved to withstand baking sun without any scorching, so I will plant more of them later too.

The overall impression I have of this new bed is pleasant surprise, as well as astonishment at how quickly everything got established… the weather was ideal for a change!

And just to put the size of my sunflowers in perspective, here’s a photo of me hiding among them! 😉 (I am 1.7m in my shoes).

 

Have a good weekend and Happy Gardening!

 

 

Nepal Himalaya Park, Germany: July 2021

Not far from us a wonderful garden nestles on a stony hillside on the edge of the Bavarian Forest and above the River Danube.

Within its grounds stands the Expo 2000 Nepalese Pavilion – a Buddhist Temple and Hindi Stupa all in one. After being dismantled after the exhibition, it was transported here and rebuilt by the Nepalese craftsmen, setting the theme for the garden which has grown up around it. The garden has since been extended a great deal and although it is only open three afternoons a week in the summer months it has become one of the most popular attractions in the region.

There are not many gardens in the south of Germany that are open to the public, and none at all that could be compared with the famous English gardens. So it is always a treat to visit this one which is more like a park than a garden and allows nature to play a hand.

The owner is an avid plant collector and has many unusual plants from the Himalaya region and Asia in general. But there are also native plants, flowers and trees mixed in with the more exotic.

On this particular visit the Hydrangeas were a highlight…

…as well as the Lilies…

…and the gorgeous pale yellow hollyhocks that have popped up everywhere…

Dotted around the grounds are various temples, gates, bridges, bells, prayer wheels, statues and figures that have been brought over from Asia or built in that style.

I like the ones that blend in with the planting best, but they do all add to the atmosphere, which is unique; the buzz of conversation at the entrance gate slowly subsides to a quiet hum as visitors move down past the pond and are drawn into the tranquility of the garden.

There are distinctive areas – the Japanese Garden, the Pond, the Chinese and Herb Gardens and the large area covering an old stone quarry, with bridges and bridge ‘houses’ along a pathway winding its way across, up and down the side of the hill. That is the part of the garden I like best, where nature is allowed to determine which flower or grass may dominate each year.

This year has been very wet and the native Melica ciliata has spread, creating a beautiful effect with the Coreopsis, Euphorbia, Perovskia and Eryngium.


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The temple itself is a focal point, with calming chants played in the background creating a very peaceful place to just sit and take a break. It was built as both a Buddhist temple and Hindu stupa, as a symbol of tolerance and understanding of the two religions.

Regular events raise money for the Nepal Himalaya Foundation established by the owners.

But I was there for the plants. And for inspiration, like this somewhat overgrown and wild spiral bed…

Or this glorious planting combination of spiky leaves, pink phlox and yellow lilies…

My friend and I took hundreds of photos, so this is just a taste of the flair and tranquility this garden has to offer. Hope you enjoyed the mini tour!

😃

https://www.nepal-himalaya-pavillon.de

And a link to a youtube video (only music) made by photographer Tobias Lindenmeir (https://www.naturphoto.net ):

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!