Therefore all seasons shall be sweet to thee,
Whether summer clothe the general earth
With greeness, or the redbreast sit and sing
Betwixt the tufts of snow on the bare branch
Of mossy apple-tree, while the nigh thatch
Smokes in the sun-thaw; whether the eave-drops fall
Heard only in the trances of the blast,
Or if the secret ministry of frost
Shall hang them up in silent icicles,
Quietly shining to the quiet Moon.

Monday, June 28, 2010

A Little Summer Magic

Just a short post to say thank you for all the good wishes I've received,my wrist is mending nicely thank you and I didn't need any surgery. I have another two and a half weeks before the cast comes off but I've become quite good at doing things with one hand now :) I've been in the happy position of being able to spend a good deal of time sitting in my garden enjoying the lovely weather. It isn't in very good shape after 3 weeks of neglect and I've become very aware of its many shortcomings, it definitely needs much more strong colour among all the white and pastels which I tend to go for.

This is a magical time of year and there are so many lovely flowers, campanulas are among those that are just starting to bloom, I love this particular shade of blue which is actually more intense than it looks, the strength of the sunlight has drained some of the colour. Blue flowers always look better in the evening when the light is beginning to fade.

The best thing at the moment is the scent of roses which drifts on the air all over the garden. Almost all my roses are old-fashioned shrub roses chosen for their perfume. The one at the top of this post is Reines des Violettes and above is Ferdinand Pichard. The new header photograph is a single bloom of this, it's hard to choose favourites among the roses but Ferdinand has to be near the top of my list.

The seedheads of clematis alpina 'Rosie O'Gradie sparkling in the sun.

Felicite Parmentiere is flowering beautifully this year. She hates the rain and for the last few years has sat there miserably dripping wet and covered in brown flower buds that never actually bloom. At the moment though she looks wonderful. This is my favourite of all the rose scents in my garden, I wish I could share it with you.

This is Rambling Rector flowering on the front of the house. It was cut back hard in the autumn of 2008 and appears to have enjoyed the experience.

The old roses have such marvellous names, this is Koenigin von Danemark or Queen of Denmark. One day I intend to have Ispahan, Belle de Crecy and Quatre Saisons simply because I love the names. I have others besides the ones shown here - Rosa Mundi and Louise Odier are still to flower so there is still pleasure to come especially as these two are new this year and I don't yet know what their perfumes are like. Meanwhile Comte de Chambord is spilling over the terrace steps making every trip down to the compost heap a pleasure and my Apothecary rose is getting bigger every year, it creeps steadily along and I suspect I may have to curb its exuberance eventually!


Granny Sue said...

I'm glad to hear you're mending nicely, Rowan. One thing about garden work, it doesn't go anywhere, it just waits for you!

Love the rose pics; I think I have one of the pink one that doesn't like rain. It's a lovely scent, and the petals dry well for pot pourri too. Mine did poorly this year because of the rain. I like the header photo--I'm thinking we need one of those roses in our garden!

Lynda (Granny K) said...

Beautiful roses Rowan!

Glad you are on the mend and still able to take lovely photos.

Elizabeth Rhiannon said...

Well, hello Rowan! I've been away for such a long time, I wasn't aware that you had an injury. My apologies and sympathies but it sounds like your healing nicely :) Your garden is beautiful and I can see why your Ferdinand rose is your header; it's breathtaking! It sounds like your garden is helping to heal you ;) Best wishes...ER

laoi gaul~williams said...

oh so glad you are well on the mend~but how lovely you have been able to enjoy your garden so much~it all looks wonderful :)

Mac n' Janet said...

Glad to hear you're doing well, I know you'll be glad to get that cast off. Your roses are beautiful!

Wanda..... said...

The Rambling Rector flowering on the front of your house has turned me into an envious's beautiful, Rowan! I love the Queen of Denmark too.

At this point, isn't the cast the worst part? It became the worst for me and my broken ankle...6 weeks in one that went up above my knee!

Your garden seems like a wonderful place to relax and recuperate!

Anonymous said...

it's great to hear you are mending good. Great news about not needing surgery.
Those roses are fabulous. I love roses too and wish I had some more room for them.
Have a wonderful day !!

Bovey Belle said...

I am SO glad to hear that you are on the mend. Your one-finger typing must be better than mine : )

As for your roses - well, I have the Rosa mundi, but none of the others, but I DO have the David Austin rose catalogue here, and have been taking notes, for my next garden . . .

I just MUST have all the Hardy-inspired roses. I did have Madame Hardy but she reverted and I had to hoik her out as she was all briar rose. I will be greedy and have both Tess of the D'Urbervilles - climbing as well as bush. Hopefully they will do better than they do here in Wales, where the ramblers enjoy it but t'other roses don't.

WOL said...

Your pictures are always so lovely! Alas, I do not own the place where I live, but that has not stopped me from caring for and "improving" the grounds. I "inherited" both red and pink "antique" 5-petal climbing roses that I suspect were originally tea roses whose graft died and that have grown out from the root stock. I've been training them to the fence to keep the long canes from whipping about in the wind, and they are a riot of color in the spring.

Thimbleanna said...

It is magic, isn't it? Your flowers are all so beautiful -- I just love this time of year. Love your new header too!

George said...

Glad your wrist is on the mend, Rowan. Sitting in the garden with roses is fine therapy for almost any malady.

Rosie said...

So glad to hear that your wrist is healing well and that no surgery was required. What better way to help it heal than sitting in the sun in a rose perfumed garden - the blooms are all so pretty they must be a constant delight:)

Diane said...

Hi Rowan, so glad you are on the mend. Your roses look wonderful - I can actually smell them from here! The website we use for the walks is
We have done almost all of these walks on here now and love them. You really must try Uncle Geoffs - its so unique. xxxxx

Anonymous said...

Beautiful new header shot Rowan. Glad your mending OK and taking it easy in the garden.

Mary said...

Lovely to hear from you this morning - I was interested in the animals you've seen and ones you hope to view on your next visit. I didn't see any hippo road signs, perhaps because we were in remote camps with no traffic other than the camp vehicles. We did have hippo guards on the walkways at night in two locations! Yes, they are the most dangerous animal and when on the water I was slightly nervous when they were close by! All just awesome though Rowan, I hope I can go again some year.

As for you dear, glad to hear all is healing well - sitting watching those stunning roses climb sounds like perfect therapy! They are so beautiful - I'm breathing in deeply and imagining the perfume!
We're about to break the hottest June ever record here - around 100 every day for couple of weeks - and no rain to speak of, really frying everything in the garden, it looks so sad.

Off to New England tomorrow - know you like that area - but hear it's even hot and humid there. Then on to Montreal and Quebec, surely some relief from the heat up there!!!

Take care Rowan, be well soon.
Fondly, Mary.

FireLight said...

The roses are only slightly more beautiful than their names! I am so happy to know you have been enjoying the garden. And Granny Sue is so right; it will wait for you. Get plenty of good rest and don't rush in too soon! From the looks of all roses here, they have had plenty of TLC to carry them through! They have obviously been happily returning that care! Thank you for sharing it with us!

Unknown said...

Hello Rowan,

Thanks for visiting. I'm glad your hand will be returned to you before too long! Although I'm not a gardener I have always loved roses but am used to the Tea varieties mainly, many of which had the perfume bred out over the years! I had thought your header was Rosa Mundi. You will have to let us see the difference! I can imagine the perfume must be wonderful during this warm spell and I hope you continue to enjoy sitting out.

Colette said...

Your garden look really lovely and I am glad your wrist is mending well without surgery.

take care.

Colette x

Gracie said...

Nice to know you're better and soon the cast will be over! And many thanks for sharing your garden blooming with us, I swear I can even smell it.....

Together We Save said...

Glad to hear you are getting better. Just have to say these roses are breath taking.

Morning's Minion said...

I haven't been able yet to find sources for the lovely old roses which I prefer. I was able to grow the hardiest ones in my VT garden.
I did find Blanc Double de Courbet [sp?] Hansa, Wise Portia--all of which are tiny struggling shrubs in this first season.
Surely the older varieties are the sweetest. Roserie de l'Hay is much coveted--my garden wishes are much larger than my budget or my stamina.

Lila Rostenberg said...

What gorgeous roses! I wonder if June is the peak month for roses where you live?
May is full of roses here.

Eigon said...

I highly recommend Ispahan - a friend of mine has it all up one wall of her little courtyard garden. It looks wonderful and smells beautiful, too.