I think that was Spring?

How did it get to be June?!  I think I went out to water the garden in March and somehow I ended up at the beginning of summer!  It certainly was a very hot and dry spring and I feel as if I have had a hose pipe permanently attached to the end of my arm!  The summer rains have started in earnest now so hopefully the hose can get coiled up for a while.  The cut flowers have been my main focus this spring and I continue to learn what works in our Central Florida climate and how best to grow them.  I’m really encouraged by the different flowers I have been able to enjoy.

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The roses have been lovely this spring.  I added a new David Austin Rose, Boscobel, to my collection  and I hoped it would be a good one to cut.   So far it has, although none of the roses seem to last very long in a vase once the hot weather sets in as they seem to open so quickly.  Winter is really a better time to cut them.  Boscobel is such a lovely color and I am really pleased with it.

 

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Such an unusual bud!

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I think I would describe it as a watermelon pink.

 

Goodness roses can be so addictive can’t they?!  My other favorite is Koko Loko.  I may have written about this one before so apologies if I am a little obsessed with it!

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I have started selling bouquets at a local organic market this year.  It has been something I have been working towards for a while now and I finally decided to take the plunge.  I wanted to make sure that I had a lot of different varieties of flowers to offer – many of them not commonly seen in Central Florida.

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The dahlias have been a wonderful cut flower this spring and they have been really productive up until the end of May.  It is now too hot for them and the flowers get smaller and the stems less thick.  I will keep them ticking over during the summer and then they should respond to the cooler weather of autumn with more flowering.

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Dahlia “Bubbling Over”

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An evening’s pickings

 

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Other flowers which have grown well in the cutting garden are lovely little Feverfew.

 

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One of my absolute favorites – Phlox Cherry Caramel

 

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Blue Statice

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I wasn’t sure how Bells of Ireland would do here but I can report that they were wonderful!

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Bupleurum was another first and super easy to grow here – I just wished I had planted more of it!

 

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Orlaya Grandiflora

 

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Chantilly Snapdragons

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These Black Eyed Susan “Chim Chiminee” were grown from seed last autumn and started flowering at the end of April.  Another one I would like to grow more of.

With the heat and constant afternoon rains the flowers start to go over but I should still have some Zinnias and Sunflowers to see me through to the beginning of July.  Then the garden can take a summer rest before I rework the beds and replant in August/September for autumn.

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Wishing my lovely readers a wonderful and sunny summer!

 

-Kate x


27 thoughts on “I think that was Spring?

    1. That is so kind of you! Thank you! At the moment I do large jam jar posies but would like to also do paper wrapped bouquets when I feel that I have plenty of flowers to do them with. There is a really cool product called Eco Fresh Bouquet which is a biodegradable sponge wrap which can keep the stems hydrated for several hours – so I shall explore that. xx

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  1. They are all so beautiful Kate. I love the Chantilly Snapdragons. I have never seen them before, I will have to try to track some down here.

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    1. Hi Leeanne! Thank you so much for leaving a comment! It was my first time growing the Chantilly snaps here and I was really pleased with them – although I think I started the seeds a bit late. I’ll have to experiment a bit to see what works best this autumn. Another type is the Madame Butterfly which are equally lovely. Hope you can find some seeds there as I am sure they will do so well for you! I always enjoy your photos of your beautiful garden – a horticultural paradise in my opinion! xx

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  2. Hi Kate – a fellow blogger and reader of both our blogs, Linda at Southern Rural Route said I must check out your blog. I too have an interest in growing cut flowers for market. This season is off the table for me. I found your lovely flowers and arrangements and your photos to be such inspiration. I look forward to reading more of your posts and seeing what you are growing. Cheers! Kim

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    1. Hi there Kim! Thank you so much for visiting. I love to garden but I have really enjoyed focusing more on the cut flowers – I think it is good for me too because it makes me more organized and disciplined!! I hope you will be able to get some going for the next season. I’ll hop over to your blog for a visit!

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  3. I have been wondering where the year has gone too! We have been working on the house so the garden is looking awful! Plenty of flowers so the bees and insects are happy but it is all so untidy!
    Your flowers look gorgeous as ever, Kate! I love David Austin roses and Boscobel is such a beauty! I have been meaning to grow some more dahlias for a while. The variety of shapes and colours is astounding. I have been admiring Sarah Raven’s catalogues especially https://www.sarahraven.com/ Good luck with the cut flower bouquets!

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    1. Hi Clare! Thank you so much for commenting. I don’t believe for one moment that your garden is looking awful! If you have plenty of flowers then it is beautiful and natural! I wish that Sarah Raven would ship to the USA. My sister sends me the catalogue sometimes and there are always so many lovely things to buy. Hope all the house renovations are going well. xx

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      1. Thank-you Kate, you are very kind. Yes the renovations are going well after a very slow start. We only have a little decorating left to do to the bathroom, the shower room and the en-suite bathroom and then we’ll have a rest for a few weeks before we start on the next stage. xx

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  4. All your flowers are gorgeous!! I have never seen Chantilly Snapdragons before.. it is beautiful…
    Have you ever tried growing Astrantia Major? I planted it this season , the flowers stay for so long and they are perfect as a cut flower. They need plenty of water though…
    Enjoy your beautiful garden Kate!

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    1. Hello Nesli! Thank you so much for your lovely comments. This was my first year growing the Chantilly snapdragons and I really love them. I am sure they would do well for you. I got the seeds from Johnny’s Seeds. I love Astrantia and so wish I could grow it but i think it needs a cooler climate? Maybe I should just try anyway and give it some shade? I’m always willing to try something new.

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  5. Dear Kate,
    I am so happy to see all these gorgeous flowers in your garden! Phlox Cherry Caramel is new to me. I agree it is wonderful! I think your flower sales should flourish! As I was look in through your photos, I was think how perfect your bouquets would be for a wedding or special party.

    Thanks for your comment on my blog! In response to use of neem oil and leaf burn, yes any oil can cause leaf burn under hot sun. Instructions often say not to spray when temps are above 90, which eliminates a lot of our summer! I love zinnias but also have experienced powdery mildew with them. I don’t have a lot of full sun, which they need, so I don’t grow many. Sometimes I find some I can’t resist!

    Best wishes to you!
    Deb

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    1. Hi there Deb! Thank you so much for your lovely comments – you are so kind! Thanks too for the info on Neem. I think you are right about the sun and the leaf burn. Its frustrating because as you say it does eliminate a lot of the summer. I’ll just use it when I know it is going to be cloudy!
      xx

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  6. Hi Kate! What beautiful photos! I’m just in love with the delicate shade of your Koko Loko rose. It was a treat to visit and see so many delightful flowers. I’m glad our rainy season has begun also, but it has a dry winter and spring to make up for. I too feel that my hose was becoming a permanent appendage. Good luck with your cut flower endeavor. _Janice

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    1. Hi Janice! Thank you so much for your visit! I’m so glad you like the Koko Loko rose. I was just thinking today how it has barely had any blackspot this year but maybe that will change with all this rain we are getting! I got mine mail order from a nursery in Mississippi called K and M Roses. They have lots of good roses on Fortuniana rootstock. I’m happy to see the rain but of course it has to be feast or famine doesn’t it? – I don’t think I have seen the sun in a week now and my garden is becoming pretty squelchy!

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  7. wonderful images, Kate! I am so pleased that you have had such success growing so many flowers there (a testament to your dedication) and your new venture sounds great too – I would love to do something similar here, but there are quite a few other gardeners locally who got in on the act first! Still, eager awaiting Koko Loko’s first bloom in my garden, but don’t think it will be long now ….x

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    1. Hi Anna! Thank you so much for taking the time to comment. I really do appreciate it! I wouldn’t be put off by the fact that other people are doing the flowers as I think that every one brings something a little different to the table. You have such artistic talent that I bet your arrangements would be gorgeous. Your photography is so amazing too that they would definitely stand out from the crowd! I am eagerly awaiting your Koko Loko too! I am really pleased with how disease resistant mine seems to be. I shall probably regret saying that now and it will be covered in blackspot!! lol!

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  8. Kate, these are beautiful! I love all of your beautiful flowers! I have been thinking about diving into rose gardening for about a year now — I am so worried that I won’t do it right. I was looking at David Austin Roses back in February and not completely sold on it, but you have inspired me to give it a try!

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    1. Hi Wendy! Thank you so much! I’m sure you could grow beautiful roses in your climate! They probably will need some winter protection but that is easy to do. I think the David Austin site should have different ones that will do well in a colder climate. Deer can be a bit of a problem though…I think I remember you saying that you had deer but perhaps if they can be put closer to the house it might help. Wishing you lots of success with them! xx

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  9. I know…so annoying! I originally thought they wouldn’t like them because of the thorns but it doesn’t seem to bother them. That’s good that you can put them closer to the house. The deer in our neighborhood have become so tame that I often find them outside the front door :-((

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  10. Kate, your roses are SO GORGEOUS! All your cutting flowers look like something from an English gardening magazine. Sorry I’m so late in catching up, and I hope you haven’t had to spend so much time watering recently — we didn’t get rain here for nearly a month of temps in the 90s, so I understand what you went through. Thanks for sharing your beautiful flowers! -Beth

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  11. Oh goodness Beth you are so kind…Thank you so much! I really am enjoying those different roses. Summer is in full swing here now and it is incredibly humid with daily downpours so I am relieved of watering duty for a bit! So sorry you had a drought there too – it is such hard work to keep everything alive in those kind of temperatures let alone look good. I am sure your garden areas are looking just lovely – I always enjoy your flowers. Have a good rest of the summer!
    – Kate xx

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