Monday, 22 May 2017

"The switch".



Half May is a time of big changes. In one week the garden has changed completely. Every year, I am surprised again about the metamorphosis of the garden! "The switch" I call this period.

"The switch" from tulips to roses.

The tulips are all gone now. Instead, the cream coloured rose Fr├╝hlingsduft is in full glory. Which delight to smell the roses again. I could be sitting a whole day underneath it. Well, if there were no such mean thorns that is!

And then the "switch" from cold spring weather to tropical days.

After a cold spring, last week we finally had some warm weather (30 degrees C). Iris Hollandica has over blown faster than usual, but who cares? They were beautiful. Iris Germanica is flourishing too. I supported every heavy flower stem with an iron stick. If not, they would certainly break down with a lot of wind. Because of all this during "the switch" there is always a lot to do!

Finally, the "switch" from drought to rain.

Is has not been raining for weeks , so the garden was very dry. Every afternoon, the plants hang down; waiting for better times. But by the end of this week, the weather has changed and rain has come. Rain ... .. that makes the difference in the week of "the switch".

I can hear the garden grow!



Rosa 'Fr├╝hlingsduft'    


The rose in full glory.


Iris hollandica.


In blue and.......


......white.


Iris germanica.


Another variety, 'Night Ruler'.


Some other stars: Lupine......


Aquilegia, black and....


....blue


The latest tulip, 'Green wave'

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Monday, 15 May 2017

May. Tree peonies.


May, what a wonderful month it is. Shall I write about the first roses, or about the extraordinary red blooming broad beans? About the last tulips? Indecisively I walk through the garden. But finally I choose the tree peony, it simply looks breath-taking.

Because my tree peony flowers two weeks only, I can enjoy the exuberant bloom for a short period. However, from my kitchen window I have perfect view at it. So I do not have to miss anything of its bloom.

Although this peony is called 'tree peony', it is not really a tree. Rather a large shrub about 2m high. The big flower buds appear around mid-April. As they do, I quickly count the buds; twenty. TWENTY, what a luxury!

In early May, the buds are colouring in a beautiful pink tone. I hold my breath, hoping it will not be a rainy week. If so the flowers will be gone even more quickly.

But the weather is good for me. Just a little bit of rain. The raindrops enhance the flower head’s beauty. As the sun breaks through the clouds, the flowers are opening. ...... Need I say more? They are just beautiful!

Because this year I have so many flowers I cut two of them. I put them in a vase and place them in the kitchen window.

Tree peonies, inside and outside. The decadence to the max!




Mid April, the flower buds are huge.


In May they are colouring.


The rain drops makes the flowers even more beautiful.



Suddenly the sun.


The flowers are opening......


..... and I can peek inside.


Inside a vase with tree peonies. Outside you can see the tree peony.

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Monday, 8 May 2017

Tulips from Amsterdam.


The other day my daughter and me went to Keukenhof. The weather forecast predicted a pleasant temperature and lots of sunshine. So, this is the time to go!

Alas, a lot of other people have come up with the same idea. All the roads to Keukenhof are jammed with traffic. All on their way to Keukenhof. After finally arriving we have to queue at the entrance, at the restaurant and at the toilet. Fortunately, the park is very large and we are able to fully enjoy the happy colours. All tulips are in bloom. It is beautiful.

Keukenhof is a huge attraction to foreign tourists too. We hear different languages all around us: Spanish, Italian, English, French and German. They all really enjoy the flowers.

And what do tourists do next day? Well they go to Amsterdam city and visit the flower market. Here they buy - as souvenirs - huge amounts of tulip bulbs. A bag for mom, one for their mother in law, one for the neighbour who hosts the cat .........

I am perplexed. Planting tulip bulbs in this time of year, is that possible? We always plant tulips in autumn never in spring. Planting in autumn will give the best results. If my bulbs supplier reads this he probably will freak out! If these bulbs do not bloom it will definitely harm the industry's reputation.

It makes me curious, though. While the merchant quickly wraps 300 tulips for a Spanish customer, I ask innocently: "As I plant these tulips now, when will they flower?" Without blinking an eye the man says: "After 4 to 6 weeks."

After 4 to 6 weeks! In your wildest dreams is my first reaction. I buy 10 tulips and plant them next day in the garden.

Mid-June I will come back to you about this experiment. But I am not very convinced seeing flowering tulips within six weeks!



These Anemones are on my list



Tulips almost translucent 


Combination of sweet colours......


or bright.....


.....  this is definitely our favorite!


Tourists are taking many pictures in the flower fields.


At the flower market in Amsterdam.


The purchases of a Spanisch customer.


The tulips of my experiment.

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