Tuesday 22 March 2011

Gifts and wildflowers.

I celebrated my 60th birthday last week. I had not realised getting older could be such fun. My parents and mother in law bought me this beautiful bird bath.
It suits the bamboo garden very well.

Warmer weather has allowed me to spend more time in the garden. Division of plants are doing well and seedlings are growing. I am enjoying this project.

Wildflowers are a priority. Pasque flower is a native. She is a shy yet exotic beauty.......
now rarely seen in the wild. The name refers to Easter, when the large cup-shaped flowers unfurl on short stems from their hairy buds. They have five or six violet-purple petaloid sepals and an explosion of vibrant yellow stamens at their centre.
The leaves are bipinnate and feathery and the plant is covered in a fuzz of hairs.
Surely this must be one of our prettiest wildflowers??

Days are warm and sunny.........I saw two butterflies today, a peacock and a brimstone. Mallards and moorhen are regular visitors to the garden. Spring is here if only for a moment......mother nature often teases us during March and April, I am happy to play along with her.........


  1. Belated Happy birthday - it's great being of bus pass age isn't it?! Pretty flower and we too had butterflies in the garden along with loads of ladybirds which had been hibernating in our window frames!

  2. Hi Jane, Thank you....bus pass, gosh I had forgotten that I am entitled to that!!
    I have ladybirds in the front porch....they look like harlequins....I shall help them out during the next few days......

  3. Hi Cheryl,

    Wow, I didn't realise it was your 60th! I hope you had a wonderful day. I love the bamboo bird bath, I'm always on the lookout for unusual, contemporary bird baths but never seem to find them!

    I love the pasque flowers, really must get some for the garden but always seem to forget until I see people posting them on their blogs!

    Have a wonderful week, the weather here has been gorgeous today, I hope it's as nice for you.
    (actually, if I'm honest we really need some rain, I'm having to water pots)

  4. Hi Liz, I had a fabulous day, tku. I did email you, hope you received it. Thank you for your card and gift, I was very touched.
    Yes 60....I am happy to be 60, each decade has something new to make it memorable. I a not one for sitting in a chair and watching my life pass by.....

    I love the pasque flower. I found 'rubra' today and treated myself. I have planted them in old colanders, this way I can keep the conditions right for them. Also the rabbits cannot get near them! They actually look good.

    The weather has been very warm. I cannot remember the last time we had rain. I am watering pots also.......

  5. Hi Cheryl..a belated birthday wish to you...I do hope you enjoyed!
    The bird bath is fabulous..so unique!!
    Wonderful that you are at the place to get into the earth and get your hands dirty lol...I can hardly wait!
    Make sure you always remember to embrace your inner child!! Thanks for coming by my post!!

  6. Hi Grammie, tku....yes I did enjoy it very much.
    I love the bird bath, it will always be special as my parents and mother in law bought it.

    Getting your hands dirty is just the best and yes Grammie I will always embrace my inner child.......

  7. Happy Birthday to you! Happy Birthday to you!
    I'm glad you had a lovely day and have such a beautiful gift to remember it by. I hope the birds appreciate how chic their bathing facilities are! :)
    The pulsatilla is beautiful, I love the colour of the petals and the subtle green of the stems and leaves covered in all those hairs.
    It's been so wonderful having some sunshine hasn't it, I can't wait for the weekend so I can get out into the garden too.
    Take care,

  8. Oh,I wish I'd known about your birthday! Your birdbath is beautiful, and such a special family gift!!! I'm glad you had a wonderful time. The pasque is wonderful too.
    I recognise it, I am reading and learning.
    PS - thank you for your advice on the border planting, but the area is ridden with ground elder that I can't get eradicate without chemicals or digging out - I am sure it will crowd out whatever I plant.
    I have also spotted one small plant at the cottage which I will hopefully be able to dig up in entirety at the weekend.

  9. Dear Cheryl,
    I sent many blessings for your 60th! Getting older does have advantages, the bus pass made me laugh. I am waiting for 65 and the pass to the National Parks! Your family treats you like the treasure you are! The bird bath is lovely and perfect for the bamboo garden. They know the best gift is for the gardens.
    I thought of you today while planting salad bowls.....
    Our Spring Kitchen garden is planted. Now I wait for the sprouts and the harvesting.
    Wonderful to see your wild flowers. Seeing butterflies too makes March an amazing, "Wow" month. I just love Spring. Waiting on butterflies and more bees to come into my gardens.
    We are to have rain tonight. I do hope you get Spring showers soon.

  10. A belated Happy Birthday Cheryl. What a beautiful bird bath. It blends in with the garden so well. I am glad to see that your plant dividing is coming along. Soon you can get your shop going. Wish I was near. I would relieve you of some of these flowers. We have had our first butterfly too. Isn't it exciting.

  11. Thank you Lucinda, I am sure the birds appreciate their new bathing area. It is so beautiful I almost wish I was a bird.

    Enjoy your garden.......I can see you amongst the herbs, very healing.

  12. Hi Dan, I am glad that you are enjoying learning about the plants that grow in this beautiful country of ours. I look forward to seeing your plantings at some point.

    Ground elder is a real pain. Perhaps you could try and dig it out to the best of your ability and then cover the area with black matting or something similar. You would have to leave it covered for a long time but perhaps it would be the best thing. Chemicals often do not work with ground elder.....also you will kill a lot of the life, in the soil below.
    Difficult for you, I know you will make the best choice for you.....

  13. Dear Sherry,
    Your birthday gifts are treasured and much loved already. My daughter loves the fan! It made her smile, as it has many of my friends.

    Getting older is a joy. I have known many that did not reach my age. I am blessed.....
    Yes, the bus pass made me smile to. I think I would rather have a pass to your national parks....lol

    I have sown leaves in my bowls.....they should start to show in the next few days. I thought of you also.

    The garden has come to life again and my heart feels the beat of spring. Still no wren but I live in hope. I miss them badly.

    Enjoy your rain.......and when you have had enough send it in this direction please!!

  14. Thank you Lisa,

    The division of plants has worked very well. The main problem I have is not planting them in the garden (I see bare soil and think I will fill it with a plant from the greenhouse). Of course, that is not the idea. Some restraint is needed for sure.

    It is wonderful to see the butterflies again.
    Along with the bees and birds the garden is a joy.......

  15. A belated Happy Birthday, Cheryl! I do hope that you had a wonderful day. I feel so guilty that I missed it--I seem to be preoccupied with everything here at home lately. The birdbath is lovely and the perfect gift for you; it will fit in so well in your garden. Good to see that your seedlings are doing so well; as Lisa says, if I were nearer to you, I'd love to check these out.

    My garden is just beginning to emerge, and it's fun to see each morning what has just come up. I hope the colder weather coming tomorrow doesn't hurt any of the emerging plants. I have two daffodil blooms! No butterflies yet, but I did see a bee yesterday. I love spring!

  16. Dear Rose.....Thank you for your birthday wishes.
    Please do not feel guilty, there is absolutely nothing to feel guilty about.

    The divisions have done extremely well. I shall sell these in a few weeks time.
    I also have some navy blue sweet peas. The blooms are enormous. I shall keep a few for myself and sell the rest. They came from Kew Gardens.......I am having so much fun.

    I am pleased your gardens are waking from their winter sleep. I had remembered that you love Spring. It is a glorious time of year.
    I am sure your plants will survive the expected cold snap......

  17. Happy, happy, happy belated birthday!!! That is one gorgeous birthday! I love pasque flower; they are not common here, either.

  18. Very many Happy (belated) Birthday wishes Cheryl, I do wish I had known!

    Your birdbath is to die for!! I love it, I am so envious of that and your bronze boy and girl, if they disappear one night you will know where to look ;)

    The Pasque flowers are beautiful, I put some in last year but think I have lost them. I had forgotten until I saw yours. There is so much to be done in my garden but as soon as the sun shines I want to be off and away hunting for wildlife :)

    Enjoy this lovely Springtime Cheryl!

  19. Thank yuou Jan for you birthday wishes....

    Ha! If you can manage to lift the boy and girl Jan you are very welcome to them. I somehow doubt you will........

    What a shame.....perhaps they did not get enough sunshine or were damp around their feet???
    I do know they need good drainage and lots of sun.
    Hunting for wildlife is such fun. I saw an orange tip butterfly today. I was filling a watering can, she came right up to me, 'hey look at me, I'm awake'

    Have a lovely weekend Jan and hope the sun shines for you.