Ladybird on a pink Japanese anemone.

Softer Colours

From my recent posts of zinnias, heleniums and echinaceas, you might be thinking that my garden is a blaze of bright colours at the moment.

But, in fact, it isn’t. There are areas of softer colours too, mainly because there are so many Japanese anemones. (They spread and get everywhere if they get the chance.) There are two pink ones – ‘September Charm’, which is the paler of the two, and ‘Hadspen Abundance’. (That’s the one in the top photo, complete with a little ladybird.)

Pink delphinium close-up

The third anemone is ‘Honorine Jobert’, a white one that doesn’t seem to spread as aggressively as the other two.

Despite their desire to take over the garden, I’m happy to see the mass of soft pink anemone flowers. It’s a restful, relaxing colour. Next year, I’m thinking of moving some of them beside our main sitting area and combining them with pale purples, such as perovskia (Russian sage) and silver foliage. This should help to create a laid-back area where we can allow our cares and stresses to float away…hopefully!

Another soft pink, this time unexpected, has been a second flowering of one of the delphiniums. To be honest, I don’t expect these delphinium plants to last long here, but I couldn’t resist them when I saw the pink that also has tones of mauve. These plants really like to be well-fed and don’t like too much heat and drought, so our garden is very unsuitable. I shall just have to try to remember to water them with tomato food and enjoy them for as long as they survive.

Blue geranium flower

A soft blue with a slight blush of magenta pink is a colouring I especially love and can be seen in the geranium pictured here. I’ve no idea what the variety is. (It was already in the garden when we arrived.) It manages to produce flowers over a long period and grows in the dry soil beneath several shrubs. Really, I ought to move a piece to somewhere where it would have more space and moisture, just to see what it can do.

The last of the more delicately-coloured flowers for this week is the blue scabious below. I find that scabious loves the sun and well-drained soil here. They flower over a long period and attract bees and butterflies, so there’s more than the pretty colour to enjoy. They’re almost finished for this year, but can produce the occasional late flower when you’re not expecting it.

It feels great to find a plant that is both delightful and happy in the conditions that you can give it, so next year I’ll be planning to plant more scabious varieties. And I’ll hope that there will be part of the garden that is full of gentle colours that bring rest and relaxation. (And, of course, bees and butterflies too!)

Bee on scabious flower.

15 thoughts on “Softer Colours

    1. That ladybird drew me to the particular flower – it seemed very content there, so it was much easier to photograph than a busy bee or flighty butterfly ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for the heads-up about the twitter photo. (I use the automated thing from WP, so maybe there’s a bug there – might have to do it manually in future…)

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  1. These are gorgeous flowers Ann! Always amazed at what you grow. I thought it was interesting that you feed your delphinium plants tomato food. Is that just for this plant or is this good for all plants? Just wondering.

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    1. Thanks Syd! I do grow a lot of different things in the garden, but I also photograph flowers elsewhere too. Since I haven’t been able to do that this year, I’m likely to run out of subjects to photograph fairly soon! (Then I will have to get back to printmaking and also play with altering my photos a bit…experiment time!)
      Tomato food is high in potash which encourages plants to produce flowers (and then fruit), so it can help lots of other flowering plants too. I use one based on seaweed. ๐Ÿ™‚ (But the delphiniums will still struggle to survive here.)

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      1. Thanks for the info Ann! I need to think about trying the Tomato food. I am sure you will find some more pretty plants to photograph – at least we don’t have to social distance from our plant buddies!

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  2. I’m so fond of what you call ladybirds and we call ladybugs — even though they’re not bugs at all, but beetles! I think either name is better than ‘lady beetle,’ though. We have a species here that doesn’t have any spots at all. The first time I saw one, I thought it was a genetic abnormality. Not so: just different.

    The flowers are lovely. I tend to associate pastels with spring, but I can see how they’d make a nice complement to your other flowers.

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    1. I love to see the ladybirds/bugs around the garden – lovely little creatures and do a great job of keeping greenfly in check. ๐Ÿ™‚ I saw a small yellow one once – think it may have just been a juvenile.
      Pastels do seem to be more of a spring thing somehow – though there’s plenty of them all year round really. I like the soft and relaxed feel that they give…we can all do with being helped to relax, especially these days!

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    1. Thanks Indira! The flowers are lovely but I must admit that there are many untidy areas too – but I don’t photograph those! (And still lots of work going on in the garden, but it should all be sorted out eventually. ๐Ÿ™‚ )

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  3. Gorgeous flower photos Ann, I think I have โ€˜Hadspen Abundanceโ€™ but sadly no ladybirds. And both the geranium and scabious are such gentle blues. Maybe I need to move my scabious as they haven’t done too well this year, they get shaded by other plants.

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    1. We have quite a few ladybirds here – at the moment I think they’re starting to look for places to hibernate because I have to gently shake them out of the piles of stuff that will be taken down to the tip. (I compost as much as I can, but there’s a lot that was cut down when the new fences went in. Don’t want to get rid of any ladybirds by mistake!) Just waiting for some damp autumn weather to move plants here too… ๐Ÿ™‚

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  4. If any plant is going to take over a garden, your anemones certainly are a good choice. Our front garden is a battle between another anemone, Canada, and lilies of the valley. There is a geranium as well. While attractive, they are terribly aggressive and crowd out all but the largest plants.

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