Ceanothus Southmead Shrub

Bought around May 2013 – its been a slow grower – but if it will ever be like these stunning pics on Google – I hope we have the patience to wait. Commonly known as California Lilac, this compact bushy evergreen shrub has finely toothed, dark green leaves and a profusion of dark rich blue flowers in late spring. Ideal for any well drained sunny site, but not suited to cold exposed situations.

Ceanothus

Ceanothus

 Picture at Time of Purchase

Ceanothus
8th May 2013

Background

An Evergreen California Plant. It produces reddish buds, followed by purplish-blue flowers in late spring (March to May). It prefers a sheltered position. This variety (Ceanothus Southmead) looks like its max height is a 1m and a half.

Where I planted

Planted initially to the right side of an arch in the ground  – then moved as I thought it was suffering there. So moved to another spot on the right side of the garden. It appears to be tilting over – partly to gain extra light from the surrounding heathers and partly I think to look for something to climb up – so I may move back to the fence or arch.

Further Info

Further Info on Gardeners World and how to plant here. Also on backyardgardener.com and telegraph.

Things to Remember

  • It may not need as much water as other plants.
  • Mostly hardy in the UK, but can be damaged by frost and wind in exposed situations
  • Once established, avoid pruning
  • On very young plants, pinch out the soft young shoots in spring to make bushier specimens.
  • If necessary, trim over-long flowering shoots by half with a pair of sharp shears or secateurs.
  • Avoid cutting into any wood older than one year.
  • On wall-trained plants, prune previous-season growth by one third to one half and cut back shoots growing into or out from a wall.
  • Plant all ceanothus in a sheltered position, in well-drained soil, including slightly alkaline. A south-facing wall is ideal.

Dahlia Decorative Akita

A Pack of 3 bulbs bought and planted into 3 separate pots.

The Last Dahlia I planted weren’t sucessful – I now know why – i planted them too deep – you need to plant with the stump showing.

Dahlia-Decorative-Akita

Background

Dahlia ‘Akita’ is a branching, tuberous tender perennial cultivar with large chrysanthemum petals in shades of dark crimson to red, blending to yellow toward the heart. Their tips are white on the underside. The flowers are as large as 5 in. wide (13 cm). This Dahlia belongs to the Novelty Fully Double classification and has won over 60 awards.

As with all dahlias, this plant flowers from July until the first frosts of fall. Frost blackens its foliage, and its tubers need to be overwintered in a dry, frost-free place

Where I planted

Currently I have planted in 3 large plastic terracotta coloured pots.

Further Info

General info here: Dave’s Garden

Things to Remember

  • Water thoroughly after planting and during prolonged dry weather
  • After the first nights frost in Autumn the bulbs should be lifted from the soil and stored over winter in a cool and frost free place
  • Pinch excess buds and deadhead for more and larger blooms,
  • water well during growing season, especially when grown in containers.
  • Excellent for cut flowers
  • Looks good with Rudbeckia
  • Be prepared to stake this one well and I tied up the flowers as they are heavy and some droop.

Aucuba Spotted Laurel

Another Morrison’s Shrub

Photos at Time of Purchase

Aucuba-Spotted-Laurel Aucuba-Spotted-Laurel

Background

Aucuba are dioecious evergreen shrubs with simple, leathery leaves, attractively variegated in many cultivars, and small purple flowers followed on female plants by large glossy red fruit. This plant is valued for its ability to thrive in the most difficult of garden environments, dry shade. Slow-growing, it will only reach 1.8m (6ft) after ten years if left unpruned.

The Royal Horticultural Society has given it its prestigious Award of Garden Merit (AGM) as mentioned here.

Where I planted

Currently I have replanted in a larger pot to that shown.

Further Info

General info here: BBC Gardening and Gardeners World

Things to Remember

  • Can be placed in dry shade

Euonymus Shrub

Another new plant from Morrison’s UK Flower shop: Euonymus Shrub. Described as a Variegated Evergreen Bush.

* Of a plant or foliage having or consisting of leaves that are edged or patterned in a second color.

Photos at Time of Purchase

Euonymus Euonymus Euonymus

Background

A native plant of China.

The Royal Horticultural Society has given it its prestigious Award of Garden Merit (AGM) as mentioned here.

But this site said it was Number 1 on their List of “Five Awful Plants for the Front of Your House”

Where I planted

Currently I have replanted in a larger pot to that shown.

Further Info

General info here: Gardeners World

Solutions to insect infestations here: Gardeners World

Things to Remember

  • Keep Moist in First year
  • The beautiful variegated foliage may revert to plain old green on new shoots. When this occurs, simply prune off the green shoots.
  • remove any plain green reverted stems whenever seen