Smoke and Mirrors


Sanguisorba menziesii 002 Wm[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=


Sanguisorba menziesii, Anemanthele lessoniana (Pheasant’s Tail grass) and Hakonechloa macra ‘Aureola’


I love this shot. Not the taking of it, which required teetering on the slope in an unusual relationship with a tripod, but the atmosphere it conveys. If I wanted to sum up how the bank should look one day, in just one shot, this would be it. Wispy, ephemeral, textural, full of movement. Although possibly with the sun out.

The sanguisorba blooms continue to shine even after the flowers have past their peak. I shall be ordering more of these.


The bank 018 Wm[1]


From certain angles the bank really looks to be filling out now. The orange comes from a Hemerocallis (Day Lily) that I relocated up here a couple of years ago. It has spread into a mighty clump. I’m in two minds about it. It’s not just the frequent deadheading in a difficult-to-get-to spot (fine example of forward planning there, Mrs Head Gardener). No, it’s got to the point where it has begun to sprawl, collapsing in the middle to make even an emergency link stake deployment a complete waste of time. The Cornus kousa ‘Satomi’ continues to be the star of the show.


Philadelphus 'Belle Etoile' 003 Wm[1]


Philadelphus ‘Belle Etoile’, which I did plant, alongside foxgloves, which I didn’t. The combination works well enough to have avoided the ruthless weeding fork.


Rose 002 Wm[1]


An unknown rose, three of them in fact, sprung up from nowhere now that the mass of weeds has been cleared. They add a nice touch of colour so they are staying too.


Saxifraga stolonifera 003 Wm[1]


And beneath an acer in a favoured shady spot at the foot of the slope, Saxifraga stolonifera shines out of the gloom.


The bank 016 Wm[1]


The Precipitous Bank, June


The bank 015 Wm[1]




This month the berberis hedges have had their annual haircut. The result has been quite dramatic, with the structure of the planting beginning to emerge. I’ve also cut back the tide of pulmonaria foliage and already fresh new growth is starting to appear. I hope that will mean a better display next year. Weeding has left more soil exposed and gaps to be filled but on the whole it’s looking more encouraging this month and that’s the important thing is it not.

I’m thinking the border in the forefront of this view, below the path, should be a white border. If the bank is going to be a blaze of colour, with texture and lots of movement from the grasses, then white will provide a restful frame. Hydrangea petiolaris is already there and I will add roses and foxgloves to the mix.

The eagled eyed may have noticed something else has changed. The piles of rock and gravel that have occupied that spot (bottom right) for years have finally gone. But the change is more fundamental than that, something of a milestone in fact..


The bank 017 Wm[1]


Thanks to some hard and determined work from Mike, we finally have the turning circle back!


The bank 008 Wm[3]


RIP ‘The Heap’. It was nice knowing you. Not.


And finally this month I have injuries to report.

Yes, in pursuit of weed clearance I fell off the bank. Not a great vertical distance it has to be said, I was climbing down anyway, but it’s the low wall and the concrete path that refuse to take prisoners. Exhibit A (no photograph to protect the squeamish) a six inch gash to the back of the calf. Having slithered unceremoniously down the slope I landed square on the butt reaffirming, should that ever have been necessary, that I do indeed possess a coccyx.  And was that it? No. My left foot landed in the weed trug that had fortuitously preceded me in the descent, causing it to rebound and clout me squarely on the cheek. Thankfully, to Mike’s relief more than anyone’s I suspect, I seem to have managed to escape a black eye.

It’s all quite ironic, given the timing, if you remember the circumstances surrounding the start up of the blog (here).

It gives a whole new meaning to the term ‘the June drop’.


Linking up with Helen’s End Of Month View (here) at The Patient Gardener’s Weblog. Click through to find out what other gardeners are up to this month.


2017-10-24T19:32:44+00:00June 30th, 2015|Tags: |


  1. Jacqueline June 30, 2015 at 12:17 pm - Reply

    So pretty Jessica and you have produced a garden that compliments your house beautifully.
    Hope you are recovered from your fall ……. it knocks it out of you, doesn’t it ?
    Dr. Jackie prescribes wine and then more wine and if, after a week, you are still not right ….. more wine !!!!!!! XXXX

    • Jessica June 30, 2015 at 8:43 pm - Reply

      I’m a firm believer in the medicinal tipple. OK, any old excuse! Thanks Jackie.

  2. Backlane Notebook June 30, 2015 at 12:35 pm - Reply

    Gosh I’ve just read the first account and now this of the perils of gardening on a slope. But such lovely results- it’s looking gorgeous. Have you considered Centranthus ruber albus for any of the beds? I see it everywhere and it thrives in the most inauspicious circumstances -tops of walls etc etc. And I cut some for a vase two weeks ago and today I noticed it’s smothered in emerging new flower buds.

    • Jessica June 30, 2015 at 8:50 pm - Reply

      Pretty.. I just looked it up. On the list for the white border, thanks. Gardening on a hill does give scope for some beautiful effects, but it’s really hard work.

  3. Marian St.Clair June 30, 2015 at 12:40 pm - Reply

    The slope is looking beautiful and bountiful. Perhaps now you can plant a few strategically sited flat stones, buried lengthwise into the hill, to give a better foothold.

    • Jessica June 30, 2015 at 8:52 pm - Reply

      It’s a good idea Marian, and yes I should. I’ve got to know where useful things are, like the stump of a sycamore that was allowed to self seed, to provide footholds. But a few more to fill the gaps would not go amiss.

  4. Vera June 30, 2015 at 12:59 pm - Reply

    Lovely garden, ….. not sure if I shall have a garden left after the extremely high temperatures we are having at the moment (35 – 40 C), this thought being confirmed when I cast a casual eye over the front garden this morning when we were getting animals out onto the fields. With no rain in sight, and all the water in the well going to keep the veg garden alive, I am not sure if we shall have any plants left out front! Hope your recent injuries have healed, and hope your rear end is not suffering from too much bruising.

    • Jessica June 30, 2015 at 9:19 pm - Reply

      It isn’t quite as hot here, 25C today, but still the garden is starting to wilt. Maybe some rain on Friday which will be very welcome.

  5. snowbird June 30, 2015 at 1:07 pm - Reply

    Gardening certainly can be a dangerous business! And it certainly can hurt ones pride too….hope you are healing nicely and have treated yourself to a medicinal beverage or two….all is coming along beautifully!xxx

    • Jessica June 30, 2015 at 9:56 pm - Reply

      I’ve been a bit more cautious since. And the medicinal beverage? Definitely!!

  6. jenhumm116 June 30, 2015 at 1:14 pm - Reply

    Lovely to see the progress between May and June – it’s really starting to come together. I love the first photo with the Sanguisorba. Always good to have a vision even if it sometimes seems far off!
    And poor you re the injury – I hope it’s healing up and not too painful. It just goes to show the difficulty of your site and underline what amazing things you’ve achieved.

    • Jessica June 30, 2015 at 10:00 pm - Reply

      Thanks. I was pretty disillusioned in May but it’s amazing how quickly things turn around. A bit of warmer weather and a few days of rain have really made a difference.

  7. pbmgarden June 30, 2015 at 1:26 pm - Reply

    What a dare-devil you are! Hope you heal quickly. Being fairly new to your blog I was amazed to look back at the early state of your precipitous bank. It’s really looking lovely. That Cornus is amazing.

    • Jessica June 30, 2015 at 10:04 pm - Reply

      The bank has been a lot worse than that. When we cleared it of trees it was fine for a bit and then, the following summer, every weed imaginable just exploded out of it! I’ll add a picture of it at its worst next month, if I remember.

  8. homeslip June 30, 2015 at 1:33 pm - Reply

    Oh Jessica I feel your pain. I fell off a step ladder cutting back the pear tree a few years ago, at least the step ladder fell over and I was forced to go with it trapping my leg in the process. I still bear the scar of the gash on my right shin! Back to your P. Bank and it’s looking Georgeous. You really are getting there and should be encouraged by your progress. Gardening is always one step forward and two back (or should that be the other way around?) Onwards and upwards I say and I feel a plant splurge coming on …. Me that is!

    • Jessica June 30, 2015 at 10:09 pm - Reply

      Ouch ouch ouch! Gardening is fraught with danger. No, I think you got the way round right the first time. Enjoy the plant splurge, I might just join you.

  9. Vintage Jane June 30, 2015 at 1:33 pm - Reply

    It’s all looking lovely … and deservedly so, after all your hard work … and the odd injury!

    • Jessica June 30, 2015 at 10:11 pm - Reply

      Thanks M. You can’t make an omelette without breaking some eggs. So I’m told!

  10. Mark and Gaz June 30, 2015 at 1:56 pm - Reply

    Shaping up very nicely Jessica! And hope you’re feeling much better and recovering nicely from your injuries.

    • Jessica June 30, 2015 at 10:12 pm - Reply

      Bruises are coming out now.. the colours are even better than those on the bank!

  11. Pauline June 30, 2015 at 2:01 pm - Reply

    The difference is amazing in just a month, your bank is looking really gorgeous. I do hope you haven’t suffered any lasting injuries, gardening can be a problem at times, hope you are soon back to your usual self. Take care!

    • Jessica June 30, 2015 at 10:15 pm - Reply

      I’m fine Pauline, thanks. I can’t believe the difference a month has made. I only hope I can sustain it now.

  12. LINDA from EACH LITTLE WORLD June 30, 2015 at 2:32 pm - Reply

    It’s looking wonderful so I am sorry to hear you were wounded in the service of gardening. Glad it was not worse. You might consider a different daylily. The orange ones spread the fastest and hold the spent blossoms. I think some of the newer varieties drop the dead flowers so it is not such a chore to deadhead. That Dogwood is gorgeous and the saxifrage. I don’t believe either of those are hardy here so I will just enjoy yours.

    • Jessica June 30, 2015 at 10:19 pm - Reply

      Thanks for the info on the day lily. This one falls into the same bracket as the common form of crocosmia which we also inherited. I’m sure there are varieties that are much better behaved and I shall be on the lookout for one.

  13. kate@barnhouse June 30, 2015 at 4:27 pm - Reply

    I think the bank looks marvellous, slopes so often really sets off well chosen planting … the path through it look intriguing. The rusty ducks are fun, too! I’m delighted to have discovered your beautiful garden via your equally beautiful website. I sympathise with your injuries, hope you are heeled soon.

    • Jessica June 30, 2015 at 11:28 pm - Reply

      Hi Kate, thanks and welcome to rusty duck!
      I am both daunted and excited by the slope. If the vision actually comes to fruition I can see it looking fantastic but it’s quite a challenge. I struggle with getting the heights right, so that the effect is one of plants cascading down the hill. But I will get there eventually, through trial and error. It doesn’t help that with the mild and wet conditions in Devon many plants grow a lot taller than the guideline printed on the label!

  14. christina June 30, 2015 at 5:19 pm - Reply

    Dear Jessica, your slope looks awesome! So much more colorful than in May. I especially love the pink cornus, what a beauty! The rose that sprung up out of nowhere is also very pretty. I think you have come very far already in your enterprise to redesign the slope and I am interested to see what further changes you are making. Your “mood photo” in the beginning of the post is very inspiring, it is great that you have such a clear vision where you want to be heading! Sorry to hear that you have fallen down the bank. Even though you write about it in a funny way it sounds pretty scary to me! Hope you calf heals well!
    Warm regards,

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 7:41 pm - Reply

      I found another rose today. Another low growing, sprawly type but with bright red flowers.. more colour! I think I need to find a Piet Oudolf style of garden somewhere locally, it would be very inspiring I think. Thanks Christina.

  15. Kris P June 30, 2015 at 6:17 pm - Reply

    Your Precipitous Bank REALLY deserves its name. It’s looking great but the risk of working on it’s a concern. I’m speaking to myself as much as to you as I live in fear that I may take a tumble one day down my own nasty slope. My husband risked life and limb there yesterday taking out a 2-foot Albizia “seedling” that had gotten away from us. The idea of laying out gobs of money to have the area professionally terraced has appeal (to me, if not my husband) but so does the idea of turning my back on the slope (luckily in the back on the property and largely invisible), especially if I can no longer irrigate the area. What demands these gardens place on us!

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 7:57 pm - Reply

      I’m finding irrigation to be essential on the slope, even here in rainy Devon. It is more or less south facing, plus the clay soil dries out very quickly to the point where it is almost impossible to dig a hole in it.

  16. frayed at the edge June 30, 2015 at 7:21 pm - Reply

    Perhaps you should consider abseiling down the bank, weeding as you go??!! Seriously, it is looking amazing – well worth al your hard work. And belated congrats on your 3rd blogiversary!!

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 8:05 pm - Reply

      They really do abseil at St Michael’s Mount, where we were a couple of weeks ago! I don’t mind the hard work when it pays off. Shrubs and perennials definitely the way to go here now, they are more resilient against pests. Thanks Anne.

  17. ontheedgegardening June 30, 2015 at 7:46 pm - Reply

    Looks wonderful, really lovely. Sorry to read about your untimely decent, sounds like the kind of thing that I would do, especially the rebounding trug bit! Hope you heal quickly x

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 8:06 pm - Reply

      Thanks Gill. Thankfully there were no nettles!

  18. Jayne Hill June 30, 2015 at 8:06 pm - Reply

    Ouch. Sorry to hear about your tumble, I know only too well how easy it is to get thoroughly damaged in the pursuit of our horticultural ambitions 🙁

    Hope you recover soon, and that Mike is suitably solicitous 🙂

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 8:10 pm - Reply

      I was back up there today. I must be mad.

      • Jayne Hill July 3, 2015 at 9:20 pm - Reply

        Mad? Of course you are dear, it’s a trait I recognise only too well. BTW, have I missed a little bit of Duck re-design? Looks very clean and sleek.

        BTW, I have Sanguisorba envy. Gardeners don’t just have green fingers, we also regularly have a bad case of green-eyed monster 🙂

        • Jessica July 4, 2015 at 9:33 pm - Reply

          I haven’t messed with the blog theme recently (it’s overdue), so perhaps some settings have changed somewhere. Sanguisorba is my current thing. Only two so far though, plenty of scope to collect some more..

  19. Amy at love made my home June 30, 2015 at 9:09 pm - Reply

    Ouch! Hope you will be OK. xx

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 8:11 pm - Reply

      Thanks Amy. No bones broken. Onwards..

  20. Julie June 30, 2015 at 9:22 pm - Reply

    Ouch, that sounded a frightening decent. I really love the Saxifraga stolonifera under your Acer, thats so striking.

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 8:14 pm - Reply

      It’s lovely isn’t it. It spreads by runners very easily, once you’ve got a small bit you’ve got a border full. But it’s so useful, especially as it prefers shade, I will be transferring clumps of it all around the garden.

  21. CherryPie June 30, 2015 at 10:52 pm - Reply

    Your garden is looking beautiful 🙂

    I hope you recover from your injuries soon.

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 8:15 pm - Reply

      Thanks Cherie, on both counts!

  22. mattb325 June 30, 2015 at 11:01 pm - Reply

    Oh I feel your pain, and the ignominious end in the trug. I was building a part of the retaining wall for my horrible sloping backyard and misjudged dropping a heavy boulder onto a shovel that I had used to dig the hole for said boulder, which in the best clouseau-esque fashion, promptly flew up and hit me in the face 🙂
    The scars we bear!
    The border is looking fantastic however, and it is a testament to how much work you’ve put in – it’s amazing to see the dogwood in flower by the end of june….it really does look beautiful

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 8:20 pm - Reply

      The dogwood was probably the first thing I planted here. I remember it distinctly because I did it in a torrential rain storm. It had been in a large pot for three years while we were renting so I was delighted when it settled in and started to bloom. Gardening is definitely a dangerous sport!

  23. Amy July 1, 2015 at 5:28 am - Reply

    I love the way the slope is shaping up! The feel of the sanguisorba/grass combination is quite beautiful. I would sit here and say, “but DO be careful!” except that it seems like the kind of area where you can’t entirely be careful… Netting before you hit the ground, perhaps? Joking aside, I hope you heal up quickly and can find a safe way to do the weeding…

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 8:23 pm - Reply

      Once the bank is fully planted up I really hope that weeding will just be a couple of times a year job. It’s things like the day lily growing huge that I dread. That will need to be dug out and on that incline it will be no fun.

  24. Rosie July 1, 2015 at 1:10 pm - Reply

    The slope is looking good and the Philadelphus and Foxgloves look lovely together. Oh, dear – acidents do happen in the pursuit of garden perfection. Hope all heals soon, Take care on the slope:)

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 8:24 pm - Reply

      The Philadelphus smells gorgeous too! Thanks Rosie.

  25. Suzanne July 1, 2015 at 2:26 pm - Reply

    I would say to you to be more cautious, but when doing so myself I seem to be all the more clumsy. I must say that the bank and the area around the turning circle is really looking quite fab! You are doing wonders. So nice you’ve photo journaled the journey.
    I like the idea of white at the base of this slope. You are right there is a lot going on up the slope at this point in the summer and the white at the bottom will calm things. Looks like day lilies do well on the slope. Maybe a good way to add some other warm colors.
    Your English deer don’t eat these? Here in NY they are sought after by the deer, quite a delicacy.
    Keep up the good work.

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 8:27 pm - Reply

      I’ve seen deer on the bank and yet they do seem to leave them alone. Perhaps they don’t like the common orange ones either. What do you bet if I put in more select varieties they will have them for breakfast, dinner and tea.

      • Suzanne July 3, 2015 at 2:43 am - Reply

        Yes, I have no doubt this is so. Mine have become an entree the last two nights. We have dogs too! I guess they are used to smelling them.
        I’ve spread some odiferous fertilizer. One clump left, but for how long? I am particularly upset over the deep red almost black ones. Nipped barely in bud! I am sure the echinacea are next. Hosta have been nibbled on right next to the front door.
        It’s a battle every step of the way!

        • Jessica July 3, 2015 at 2:28 pm - Reply

          It is a battle that is never ending. If it’s not deer it’s something else. I’ve just bought a trail camera which I can set up to trip when an animal comes past and I hope it will lead to all sorts of new discoveries about what actually eats my plants. At least I will know who to blame even if I can’t stop them!

  26. Julieanne July 1, 2015 at 6:13 pm - Reply

    Sorry to hear about your fall, that gash sounds painful. I hope you are recovering well now. Despite the fall, the bank is looking really good. That first photo of the Sanguisorba etc is relaxing yet engaging. An air of driftiness with the great colour of the Sanguisorba. An attractive look to aim for. I love the Saxifraga stolonifera under the acer – looks like little butterflies flittering about. Lots of beauty in the Bank, it’s a real pleasure to visit it each month.

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 8:39 pm - Reply

      The Saxifraga really stands out and yet is delicate at the same time. My only regret is remembering how much I paid for the plant, at Malvern I think, when it spreads like wildfire!

  27. Anna July 1, 2015 at 7:57 pm - Reply

    That saxifraga is a star Jessica and as Julieanne above suggests butterflies on the wing come to mind. Sorry to hear about your tumble. Gardening can be hazardous at times. Take care.

    • Jessica July 1, 2015 at 8:49 pm - Reply

      Gravity is strong when you live on a hill! Everything succumbs to it. It’s so frustrating, I spend so much time climbing down to retrieve tools, the left hand glove, weed trug, plants.. and then there’s the pile of soil that accumulates at the bottom wherever I care to tread. The next house will be on flat ground. I’m getting too old.

  28. Sarah July 1, 2015 at 9:50 pm - Reply

    Oh dear Jessica so sorry to hear about your June drop. I hope you are making a good recovery.Working on that bank must be so precarious, it does look stunning you must be so proud of what you have both achieved. I love the effect of those plants under the acer too! Sarah x

    • Jessica July 3, 2015 at 1:30 pm - Reply

      I just hope that I can keep the colour going and enhance it as the season progresses. Some of the new plants are very small!

  29. elaine July 2, 2015 at 7:34 am - Reply

    Oh my goodness – do be careful Jessica – hope your injuries are healing. I was pulling a particularly tenacious weed the other day and burst a blood vessel in my finger – the finger swelled and went black and I thought I would have to have my wedding ring cut off as it was stopping my circulation. Luckily a bowl of iced water and a lot of soap eventually managed to get it over the swollen knuckle. Gardening is not the gentle pastime it is reported to be is it.

    • Jessica July 3, 2015 at 1:32 pm - Reply

      Elaine, it is not a gentle pastime at all. But at least it keeps us fit even if we do sustain the odd injury in the course of duty. I hope your knuckle swelling is going down. That sounds painful.

  30. Jo July 2, 2015 at 12:15 pm - Reply

    Ouch, I felt that through your description, I hope you’re on the mend soon. The garden is looking fabulous and how lucky to have three roses just pop up like that.

    • Jessica July 3, 2015 at 1:35 pm - Reply

      It’s one of the delights of clearing an overgrown space.. plants that were hidden in the undergrowth can suddenly put on a growth spurt when they find light and space once again. We’ve had a few nice surprises.

  31. Sam July 2, 2015 at 12:42 pm - Reply

    Yowser. Hope you’re ok Jessica. Gardening can be a dangerous business, especially where steep slopes are concerned. The bank is looking great, though. Love that Cornus, saxifrage under the acer and the Sanguisorba. Sam x

    • Jessica July 3, 2015 at 1:37 pm - Reply

      There are places where the slope is near vertical, it’s not easy to work up there at all. I’ll be putting some vigorous ground cover in those areas so hopefully they can look after themselves in the future.

  32. Jennifer July 2, 2015 at 4:38 pm - Reply

    I’m sorry to hear about your injuries. I really hope you’ve healed by now. I often get hurt gardening, it’s sort of a theme for me. I love seeing your monthly views, it was something I always looked forward to last summer, especially that bank as it filled in. It’s all looking beautiful already.

    • Jessica July 3, 2015 at 2:13 pm - Reply

      Thanks Jennifer. There’s a bit more filling out that needs to happen but I’m feeling a bit more confident now.

  33. Island Threads July 2, 2015 at 8:39 pm - Reply

    Jessica, I think the slope is looking good, sorry you had a fall, perhaps you should tie a rope around you with it also tied to an anchor at the top, your pink rose, the flowers look just like the species rugosa rose, beach rose, does it have a perfume? also if it is RR then it has large red hips, hope you will be better soon, Frances

    • Jessica July 3, 2015 at 2:16 pm - Reply

      I haven’t noticed any fragrance. It’s a low growing but sprawly thing, not the most elegant of roses, but in that situation it doesn’t really matter and at least it is giving me some colour. A bright red one has appeared now too. I would guess they are the ‘Flower Carpet’ type of rose but I’ve no idea which ones.

  34. Helene July 2, 2015 at 11:03 pm - Reply

    Oh, Saxifraga stolonifera is exactly the kind of plant I have been looking for to put under my huge ceanothus. How many did you plant to get such a display and how long ago was it?
    I am waiting for the June drop too – my new garden is mercifully flat so I expect (and hope) everything else but me to have a fall, hope you have recovered by now!
    The bank is getting better every month but I appreciate how hard it must be to work on such a slope!

    • Jessica July 3, 2015 at 2:22 pm - Reply

      It started off as just one plant in a maybe 12cm pot, three or four years ago, it really does spread well. The squirrels give it a mowing for me from time to time and that just seems to spur it on even more!

      • Helene July 4, 2015 at 12:09 pm - Reply

        Hmm, not so sure then anymore, it’s a lovely plant but I didn’t want it to take over the area, it will have to grow happily together with my collection of tricyrtis and Convallaria. I looked up Saxifraga stolonifera and it said it was invasive with runners – but so is Lily of the Valley for example and I had no problem controlling it in my old garden, whenever it got too much in area I just took a handful here and there and pulled it up. Can you do the same with this one or do you have to dig?

        • Jessica July 4, 2015 at 10:11 pm - Reply

          Yes, it’s very easy to remove. More so than Lily of the Valley actually, as I have that problem too.
          If you would like a piece of the Saxifrage let me know.. there are several new babies appearing already. I’ll happily send you some. It has attractive red/green mottled leaves as well.

          • Helene July 4, 2015 at 10:52 pm

            Oh, thank you so much, that would be lovely!
            I looked through your blog to see if you had your email address there, but like me it seems you haven’t got any posted. I am going to give you my website email instead of my personal, I get so much spam to it anyway (!) so I suppose it’s not much risk posting it here, could you just email me please so I can send you my address?
            And if you want anything in return I would be happy to send to you of course – once I get my head above water and my garden a bit more sorted I will have to split many of my largest daylilies, could any of those tempt you? Easy to send in the post. But we can take that per email 🙂
            Here it is: xxxxxx
            Thanks again Jessica!

          • Jessica July 5, 2015 at 11:30 am

            I’ve emailed you Helene 🙂

  35. casa mariposa July 3, 2015 at 3:55 am - Reply

    What’s a turning circle? I would have killed myself multiple times over if I had that slope. I have the physical grace of a an ox. I think everything looks fabulous. :o)

    • Jessica July 3, 2015 at 2:31 pm - Reply

      The turning circle is a wide bit at the bottom of the drive where we can turn cars around. The drive itself is single track and zig zags down the hillside, there is no way I’d want to reverse all the way back up! Thanks Tammy.

  36. threadspider July 3, 2015 at 6:48 am - Reply

    Looking fantastic and I especially love the sanguisorba too. My red one is struggling but the white ones are very graceful- perhaps for your white border too? Silence coronaria Alba might be good too with good grey foliage as well.
    I hope you are recovered now and there are no more “extreme gardening” injuries this year.

    • Jessica July 3, 2015 at 2:36 pm - Reply

      I don’t think I’ve ever seen a white sanguisorba, I’ll be looking it up now. It sounds like the perfect partner for the red ones on the hill. And the Silene, nice ideas, thank you!

  37. welshhillsagain July 3, 2015 at 10:13 am - Reply

    The bank looks wonderful. It has really filled out and developed and I am in awe of all the work you have put in. I love the sanguisorba. I tried to get them established here but they died on me after a year or so, as so many things do! I wonder if I should try in a different place. Yours looks so lovely. Hope you are taking it easy for a bit after your injury too!

    • Jessica July 3, 2015 at 2:38 pm - Reply

      Many things die on me too! This particular sanguisorba is new and as yet untested, but I have the much smaller S. tanna and it’s been going for years so I’m hopeful. Thanks Elizabeth.

  38. Laura July 3, 2015 at 1:16 pm - Reply

    Should never have doubted your vision! Never! 🙂
    The climbing hydrangea looks amazing this year.

    • Jessica July 3, 2015 at 2:40 pm - Reply

      Feel free to doubt. I often, very often, doubt myself! I rescued the hydrangea from underneath a sprawling pyracantha so I’m really pleased it’s doing well this year. Thanks Laura.

  39. Angie July 3, 2015 at 4:53 pm - Reply

    Ouch! I hope you recover from your injuries quickly Jessica. The area is looking great and I don’t envy you the job of tackling that daylily. I love the first pictures too. So much so I have told myself I must get some of the Sanguisorba – it’s a beauty. I hope you got the rain you wished for and the garden is now refreshed. Our summer seems to have appeared over the last couple of days, thank goodness. Have a good weekend.

    • Jessica July 4, 2015 at 8:13 pm - Reply

      Rain really does refresh the garden doesn’t it. We’re due more tomorrow and it will be welcome. The soil, especially on the slope, dries out so quickly in summer almost irrespective of how much it rains.

  40. Peter/Outlaw July 4, 2015 at 7:14 am - Reply

    Oh my goodness, you two have certainly had your share of mishaps! I hope you heal quickly! Your slope is gorgeous!

    • Jessica July 4, 2015 at 10:06 pm - Reply

      It’s gravity that’s the problem. Without that we’d be fine..
      Thanks Peter.

  41. Donna@Gardens Eye View July 5, 2015 at 1:50 am - Reply

    Wow Jessica, the gardens are looking wonderful and blooming beautifully although I hope you are recovering from those injuries….I frequently am injuring myself in the garden although nothing serious thankfully!

    • Jessica July 5, 2015 at 11:38 am - Reply

      On the same day I had pruned the berberis, so between the scratches and thorns in the fingers and the cuts and bruises I look a right state. Long trousers for a bit..

  42. Cathy July 5, 2015 at 10:49 am - Reply

    What a difference to the bank! It looks great, but I see what you mean about the impracticalities of deadheading. And no photographic proof of your injuries? 🙁 Hope the spring is back in your step soon and you have chalked up another lesson learned…

    • Jessica July 5, 2015 at 12:19 pm - Reply

      Yes, I’m back up on the bank. Have to really otherwise all the hard work would rapidly go to waste. Especially now it’s raining and all the weeds are wearing big smiles on their faces. Thanks Cathy.

  43. bittster July 5, 2015 at 3:08 pm - Reply

    I don’t think I realized just how ‘precipitous’ your bank is until today. Yikes! Be careful. You quickly become too old for this sort of thing, but the bank is looking so much better even with the struggles against weeds and gravity. Nice that there are a few good surprises as well!
    Do you have any working paths through the bank or is it just step through and watch where each foot goes? Even the narrowest trail or two might be helpful.
    Love the dogwood!

    • Jessica July 5, 2015 at 10:17 pm - Reply

      There’s no formal path because I didn’t want to break up the planting too much. But I am starting to wear down favoured routes through the plants, where the going is a bit easier, and that does help a lot. On the near vertical sections I will place strategic stones and footholds because essentially I’m climbing there. I can only hope that when it is established there will be less weeding and it can look after itself. Everything is on irrigation too and that is a big bonus.

  44. Natalie July 9, 2015 at 2:57 am - Reply

    Garden looks splendid, as always! Sorry to hear about your little accident, but glad you don’t have to explain away a black eye!!

    • Jessica July 10, 2015 at 10:56 pm - Reply

      Think I’d have just kept quiet and leave people wondering!

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