Oh, dear! Here I go again, apologising for my lateness!
I’m blaming an unexpected heavy workload, but I’ve made sure it has not stopped me enjoying my garden, and all its perfume. And of course, there’s the unmissable Chelsea! I made sure I made time for that!
So now it’s time to show you my highlights for May.
I make no apologies for starting with an old, well covered favourite, Coronilla citrina. This started flowering last November, and it’s gone from strength to strength, now flowering better then ever! It’s lovely perfume still pervades the front garden.
Our Akebia quinata, which started blooming last month, has gone on to make a marvellous, chocolatey display in both colour and scent. I do believe it’s the best it’s ever been! We have it growing in the Scented Shrub border as well, where it roams to its heart content, reaching dizzy, unattainable heights, but our second plant over the pergola is much more accessible for the nose! Thankfully!
The Scented Shrub Border has other delights to show.
Abelia mosanensis is quite an unassuming plant, with tiny pinky-white trumpet flowers, that smell of clove pinks. It’s just starting to show its flowers now.
Our unknown Rowan tree, already there when we arrived, is not out of place in the Scented Shrub border, by virtue of its huge, creamy white flower heads, not unlike elderflower, but smelling of hawthorn. You might love the smell, you might not! I love it – to me it’s the perfume of May!
What better under planting to the Scented Shrub border than Lily-of-the-valley. It’s really doing well in the bottom corner, carpeting the ground under the Rose and Amelanchier. I don’t need to describe its perfume to you, I’m sure.
The scented shrubs are not confined to their own border. That’s just not big enough. They creep in elsewhere, too.
In the Woodland garden, Fothergilla major is bravely showing its white bottlebrush flowers. Sadly, it’s still struggling from its recent move, and is in need of some TLC!
Last month’s Clematis armandii has put on some new growth, which has already resulted in some new flowers, albeit smaller, less showy and, sadly, less scented!
Our cherished lilac display is somewhat disappointing this year. The white one in our front hedge has been over zealously pruned (not by myself, I hasten to add) resulting in a solitary bloom, while our lilac Lilac(!), in the Woodland garden is flowering its socks off – in the neighbours’ gardens! I’m having to make do with stolen pleasures, which have also been depleted this year. The overhanging branches, which gave us so much pleasure – and vases – has had to be severely cut back to accommodate our new shed – and to save our heads!
But it’s not all about shrubs.
Sweet cicely looks, and smells, lovely at this time. It looks so fitting for this time of year, resembling cow parsley, with its delicate, ferny foliage and white flower umbels, with a lovely delicate perfume. It wouldnt look out of place in a woodland or wild flower setting, but we grow it as part of our shadier herb garden. Its stalks can be used as a sweetener – good with rhubarb.
And it’s the start of the Bearded Iris season! So many of them have wonderful perfume from their magnificent blooms.
This is my rogue Iris from last year. The nursery claimed it may be “Immorality”, but I’m not convinced. Anyway, it’s beautiful and with a lovely powdery perfume.
And that’s just the start! So many more buds to come, and not just the irises. Can’t wait till next month!
The whole garden just smells overwhelmingly of hawthorn. Where from, I do not know! Our native hedge and that of our neighbours have no sign of hawthorn flowers. It must be our Rowan tree!
How’s your garden smelling?