Turn Your Back For A Moment.. And This Happens

 

The bank 029 Wm[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=

 

Growth has exploded

 
 

It’s been a funny old month. This last two weeks the weather has been truly awful for August. Wind, rain, more rain, torrential rain (did I mention the rain?), severe weather warnings, the lot. The gardener may not have liked it much but it seems the plants did.

There is progress to report elsewhere too. Firstly, the chicken wire is off. Apart from the small pieces that remain permanently embedded in some plants.. it’s gone. The scars on my arms are beginning to heal and the toolkit in the gardening trug has shrunk by one item. Mike’s wire clippers have returned to the shed. Perhaps more satisfying still, we managed to escape any major landslides in the torrential rain, even though plenty of bare earth is now exposed. A few lumps of soil came down. A scattering of stones. But nothing significant to worry about. Yet. I can only hope that between now and the autumn storms the plants I’ve put back in will spread their roots and start the job of binding the soil.

 
 

Ajuga reptans 'Burgundy Glow' 004 Wm

 

From top: Ceratostigma plumbaginoides, young Erigeron karvinskianus, Ajuga reptans ‘Burgundy Glow’

 

On the steepest part of the bank, the near vertical face, these low growing plants should also provide ground cover and help to reduce the regrowth of weeds.

 
 

Ceratostigma plumbaginoides 001 Wm

 

Ceratostigma plumbaginoides

 
 

Lily of the Valley 006 Wm

 

Convallaria majalis (Lily of the Valley)

 

Another longstanding job out of the way is the complete clearance of the top level on the terraces.  If you recall from last year it had been throttled by Lily of the Valley. I’ve had to dig up virtually every plant from that bed, disentangle the invasive roots and then put them all back. Salvageable clumps of Lily of the Valley have moved to the face of the bank. This, after all, is the perfect place for a spreading mass of roots. Their position, on the edge of the path, should provide a pool of delicious fragrance too.

 
 

Terraces 041 Wm

 

The transformed top terrace. Double whammy.

 

Some Lily of the Valley remain but are now buried in pots. With luck this tactic will restrain their enthusiasm for a couple of years. Then I can lift the pots, divide, put half back and have yet more of them to establish in another needy place on the slope.

 
 

Rudbeckia 'Goldsturm' 001 Wm

 

Rudbeckia ‘Goldsturm’

 
 

Eschscholzia californica 004 Wm

 

Penstemon ‘Garnet’ and Eschscholzia californica (Californian poppy)

 
 

I seem to have acquired ‘housemaid’s ankle’. I know this because a couple of years back Mike found out that he had housemaid’s knee after injuring it constructing a bookcase. At the time he was fairly nonplussed by the lack of sympathy he felt he received, perhaps not helped by my suggestion of a French style frilly pinny and the doctor’s scolding that “knees are not meant for kneeling on you know..” But now I find that it is actually quite painful. In my case the cause is probably too many hours spent straining to keep upright, with minimal footholds, on the steepest part of the slope. The only thing for it is a few days with my feet up, how sad is that.

 
 

Cyperus 003 Wm

 

I’ve had this beautiful grass for a number of years but long since lost the label. Does anyone know what it is? Cyperus?

 
 

The bank 028 Wm[2]

 
 

The Anemanthele lessoniana, on the right, is getting bigger. And very pink. It may be an example of nice plant, wrong place as it really does now dominate the scene. It needs space to grow and perhaps the company of a couple of its siblings to create a more balanced effect. It will get a house move later this autumn, I think I’ve found the perfect des res.

 
 

The bank 024 Wm

 

August

The usual long view. The scar caused by removal of the chicken wire is starting to soften.

 
 
The bank 019 Wm[1]
 

July

 
 

Onwards and upwards

 
 
 

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.

 
 
 
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2017-02-16T20:45:00+00:00 September 1st, 2015|Tags: |88 Comments

88 Comments

  1. kristinrusso September 1, 2015 at 12:25 pm - Reply

    Beautiful! It’s all come to life! Love the pictures. Enjoy!

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 7:46 pm - Reply

      Thanks Kristin. It’s getting there slowly. I’m just too impatient, I need the plants to grow faster!

  2. Angie September 1, 2015 at 12:56 pm - Reply

    That first image is beautiful Jessica. I hasten to add that the housemaid’s ankle has been worth it, you’ve got the area looking wonderful. I hope your ankle is on the mend soon.
    In answer to your question on my post, The Lark Ascending has needed no support at all. I’m really impressed at how strong and healthy this Rose has proved to be. The generous, possibly more than generous, helping of manure that area got in spring I think has done the trick. I will be sure to treat all the roses next spring with a double helping! Have a nice restful week.

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 7:48 pm - Reply

      I think I need to do the same then, roses never do stunningly well here. I’ve often wondered whether I feed them enough.

  3. Jacqueline September 1, 2015 at 1:15 pm - Reply

    Looking good Jessica and SO Autumnal { which it would do seeing as we are just into Autumn !!!! }
    Sorry to hear about your ankle …… I hate this ‘ getting older ‘ thing !! I still believe that I can do cartwheels but maybe not !!
    Best to put your ankle up otherwise it could get worse …. still, the perfect opportunity to look at seed catalogues !! XXXX

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 7:54 pm - Reply

      I know, my bones ache at the end of a hard day on the slope. Little and often is the key to it I think. Which is how it works in reality anyway.. in between showers!

  4. Beth @ PlantPostings September 1, 2015 at 1:31 pm - Reply

    You’ve had some interesting weather! Sorry to hear about the “housemaid’s knee.” Though I’ve never heard that term, I do believe I’ve suffered from it myself at times. Your slope is looking great. The selections of plants seems perfect–I especially like the Ajuga. I’ll look forward to your future progress updates!

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 7:59 pm - Reply

      I’ve mostly used plants shifted from elsewhere, especially when I need big clumps of them to stand out. It’s a lot cheaper that way! Next year I can edit and add a few more things of interest here and there. Thanks Beth.

  5. Caro September 1, 2015 at 1:41 pm - Reply

    I absolutely love the way plants all go a bit mad in autumn! The penstemon/eschscholzia combo is particularly lovely (I speak as one who has grown Penstemon ‘Garnet’ in the patch this year where it was found by an especially rampant nasturtium. Pink/Orange, very Schiaparelli.) Also, good work on the Lily of the Valley – this has reminded me to dig a few out of my mother’s garden for my shady border here. She won’t miss them as they’ve spread right to the back of the border. Let’s hope the rain eases off for now – torrential rain this morning for an hour, even though a dry day was forecast.

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

      Pink/Orange is becoming the new big thing! I love it, but it needs to be a deeper pink I think, the sugar variety just jars. I wish I had a pound for every time it rained down here when it wasn’t supposed to. And the Met Office is in Exeter too..

  6. mariaisabel September 1, 2015 at 1:48 pm - Reply

    I think your lovely cyperus grass is actually a very invasive plant called PiriPiri Burr. I visited a garden once and admired it and was told it was ‘banned’ in the UK. Naturally, I decided I wanted it! Googling produced various opinions, including one which said ‘widely available in garden centres’, but I’ve never seen it.

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 8:31 pm - Reply

      Hi Mariaisabel and welcome.
      I can see the resemblance and certainly my plant seeds with abandon. It is everywhere! One of those I will have forever I suspect, whether I like it or not.

  7. justjilluk September 1, 2015 at 2:30 pm - Reply

    Just gets better. Beautiful.

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 8:32 pm - Reply

      Thanks Jill.

  8. Christina September 1, 2015 at 2:54 pm - Reply

    Hi Jessica, your EoMV looks really good in August! But boy, is that slope steep in certain parts. I don’t know how you manage to garden there, it is certainly not a walk in the park. I really love the intensive blue color of Ceratostigma plumbaginoides, a plant that is new to me. Wishing you lovely end of summer days with a little bit less rain!
    Warm regards,
    Christina

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 8:35 pm - Reply

      Thanks Christina. It is very steep. The worst bit is just below the edge, where it is difficult to get to the plants from either above or below. It would be nice if September was a bit drier and even better if I could send our surplus precipitation across to you!

  9. cherylwest2015 September 1, 2015 at 3:08 pm - Reply

    Your garden is looking lush and beautiful for 1 September. My garden always prefers rain to well watering(for which we are so grateful in our very dry summer). My california poppies have all disappeared so very nice to see yours. Hope your ankle feels better soon.

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 8:38 pm - Reply

      I planted the poppies out very late, so that is probably why. Next year I’m going to try just sowing the seed direct in the ground and extend the ‘river’ of them further up the hill. I’ve never had much luck with direct sowing as yet, but they seem quite robust so it must be worth a try.

  10. Gillian September 1, 2015 at 3:25 pm - Reply

    Your hard work is paying off and now you must rest your ankle which is very frustrating. At least you can read and blog! Sending you my good wishes for a speedy recovery.

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 8:45 pm - Reply

      Hi Gillian, thanks and welcome!
      It’s got to the exciting stage where I can start to see if the grand plan is working. Time will tell..

  11. Sigrun September 1, 2015 at 3:28 pm - Reply

    Oh what beautiful borders you have! I do not unterstand what you mean ;)) next year, when you have so much rain, we can change the houses, I hate the heat in this part of Germany in this year, and the dryness. But I do not pull your wheed out!

    Sigrun

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

      There are plenty of weeds Sigrun, it’s not only the plants that are growing! The disadvantage of all the rain.

  12. Island Threads September 1, 2015 at 3:59 pm - Reply

    It is all looking good Jessica, sorry about the ankle, and well done getting the chicken wire off, Frances

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 8:58 pm - Reply

      Getting the chicken wire off is a great job done, a one-off never-to-be-repeated. I hope! I can plant into the bank easily now, which I must do if I am to hold on to the soil.

  13. Donna@Gardens Eye View September 1, 2015 at 4:33 pm - Reply

    Jessica I am sorry to hear you are injured although I know how that goes from garden work…week 5 for me laid up…feel better soon. The garden is spectacular. I love the slope and the fact that it has not eroded. And your changes give me so many ideas…I especially love the look of the top terrace now too!

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 9:01 pm - Reply

      Donna, so sorry to hear that you are laid up. It’s so frustrating isn’t it? So much to do, and so much you want to get out there and do. The top terrace is now full of gaps. Or should that be planting opportunities? 🙂

  14. Jayne Hill September 1, 2015 at 5:24 pm - Reply

    Removing that chicken wire has clearly been a Herculean task. Well done – you’ll now get the benefit for years to come.

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 9:04 pm - Reply

      Understatement of the year I think. It’s taken weeks. So laborious, clipping it away from all the plants that had grown through it and incorporated it within their structure in some cases. But the weeds are gone, for the time being. And I can address the very serious task of replanting.

  15. Linda aka Crafty Gardener September 1, 2015 at 5:30 pm - Reply

    Loved seeing all the blooms and growth. It was the same here, we went away for a week (another one) and came back to a couple of over grown spots in the garden that are getting some attention today.

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 9:15 pm - Reply

      It’s amazing the difference a week makes when you have been away. We get so used to seeing gradual changes.

  16. Sue September 1, 2015 at 5:38 pm - Reply

    It looks wonderful, but I can only imagine what hard and frustrating work you had to put in to get to this result. You deserve a couple of days with your feet up 🙂

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 9:17 pm - Reply

      Thanks Sue. It’s just the start really, but seeing a bit of progress is extremely motivating 🙂

  17. woolythymes September 1, 2015 at 6:22 pm - Reply

    How DO you keep your rudbeckia under control?…..I turn MY back, and the bugger has taken over my entire backyard!!! Lovely pics as always…and do hope your housemaid’s ankle heals soon.

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 9:20 pm - Reply

      Easy. I only just bought it this weekend! But I’ll have no difficulty keeping it under control. The slugs will probably help me out. And the deer. I’ve tried rudbeckia several times before, I never learn, but I do love strong colours at this time of year.

  18. Marian St.Clair September 1, 2015 at 6:25 pm - Reply

    Congrats on finishing off the chicken wire, now misery can beget happiness. And fingers crossed September brings better weather. I’ll be in Worcestershire Saturday for my final tour of the year:-)

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 9:22 pm - Reply

      September is often a good weather month here. I hope it proves the case for your trip. Enjoy! Look forward to hearing about the places you visited.

  19. Sue Garrett September 1, 2015 at 6:42 pm - Reply

    It’s a wonder all gardeners don’t have housemaids knee with all the kneeling that must go on in the garden.

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 9:23 pm - Reply

      Indeed. I used to have one of those foam kneelers which made things a lot easier, but then someone ran the mower over it. 🙁

  20. Charlie@Seattle Trekker September 1, 2015 at 7:04 pm - Reply

    I do so love a walk through the garden, whether it is spring, or summer, or fall, there is always so much that is beautiful to see. It has to be such wonderful feeling to know you have such an amazing touchstone at hand.

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 9:26 pm - Reply

      I couldn’t agree more Charlie. Working in the garden, or even just a stroll through it, is a great way to manage the stresses of life.

  21. Sarah September 1, 2015 at 9:10 pm - Reply

    It looks wonderful so glad your plants weren’t damaged too much by so much rain. Poor your suffering with ‘Housemaid’s ankle’ Sarah x

    • Jessica September 1, 2015 at 9:35 pm - Reply

      A few plants have suffered a bit of a battering by the rain but on the whole they haven’t done so badly. At least I’ve been saved watering for a while! Thanks Sarah.

  22. mattb325 September 1, 2015 at 10:54 pm - Reply

    Oh, I feel your pain. There is nothing so punishing as working on such steeply sloping ground. But the results looks absolutely stellar, I love the late explosion of growth very green and inviting!

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 9:52 am - Reply

      Thanks Matt. The plants are definitely loving the rain. But it looks like the berberis hedge is going to need another shearing!

  23. Freda September 1, 2015 at 11:22 pm - Reply

    What an achievement – it’s all coming together wonderfully. Sorry about the ankle and hope you recover very soon.

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 9:54 am - Reply

      I can start to see what it’s going to look like now, even if it isn’t there yet. That makes a difference in itself doesn’t it? Thanks Freda.

  24. Rosemary September 1, 2015 at 11:36 pm - Reply

    The Anemanthele lessoniana is lovely, soft, pretty, and pink – take care Jessica, don’t over do it.

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 10:01 am - Reply

      It looks much better closer up. Then the structure of the flower spikes is more clearly apparent. They are far more delicate than it seems from the ground. And less pink!

  25. Amy at love made my home September 1, 2015 at 11:42 pm - Reply

    Sit back, enjoy the wonderful views you have created and let the housemaids have a rest! Oh and your ankle too. Take care of yourself! xx

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 10:02 am - Reply

      After all the rain the weeds are growing faster than I can keep up. But I am working on slightly flatter ground at the moment, easier on the joints!

  26. CherryPie September 2, 2015 at 12:01 am - Reply

    It is all looking very lovely 🙂

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 10:03 am - Reply

      Thanks Cherie.

  27. Alain September 2, 2015 at 12:17 am - Reply

    I love the top level on your terraces.

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 10:04 am - Reply

      Lots of gaps in there now, luckily I will be visiting a local nursery this weekend 🙂 Thanks Alain.

  28. jannaschreier September 2, 2015 at 12:35 am - Reply

    Love that Penstemon and Eschscholzia combo. And was just thinking how another couple of siblings for the Anemanthele would solve your dissatisfaction, when, oh, you said it yourself! It’s all looking fabulous.

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 10:10 am - Reply

      It’s worked well that combo. Further up the hill there’s a large patch of pulmonaria which looks pretty boring in summer. I was planning to seed more poppies between the plants in the hope that they will push up and continue the ‘river’ of orange up the hill.

  29. Kris P September 2, 2015 at 1:32 am - Reply

    Nature may have helped spur plant growth but all your hard work is evident – your precipitous slope is looking very good and I’m mightily impressed! Do take care of your body in the process of all this work. I blame the work on my own slope for pushing my right knee to its limits – I’m still avoiding surgery but that day will come eventually.

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 10:14 am - Reply

      Gardening does take its toll, especially when our conditions are less than ideal. It may be a naive dream but I’m hoping that after this initial work I can establish sufficient density of planting that maintenance will be dramatically reduced in the years to come. It’s all shrubs and perennials up there and even the perennials will reduce as the trees and shrubs grow.

  30. annamadeit September 2, 2015 at 5:46 am - Reply

    With views like that, I personally would cherish an opportunity to put my feet up for a while, and just take it all in. Nice work, Jessica!

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 10:15 am - Reply

      Thanks Anna. The fact that it’s getting there, but not yet, just makes me want to go out and do more!

  31. Linda P September 2, 2015 at 9:51 am - Reply

    you must be pleased with progress on the slope and top terrace. hope ankle recovers with some rest and weather in September is less wet.

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 10:16 am - Reply

      It needs to be less wet doesn’t it. But at this time of year it dries out quickly too. I even had irrigation on again yesterday.

  32. Janet/Plantaliscious September 2, 2015 at 12:35 pm - Reply

    Ouch, your poor ankle, but what a transformation – though admittedly I’ve not really been “around” much of late, so the impact is even greater! I have found anemanthele to be a beautiful grass but inclined to outgrow its assigned space. I chopped mine hard back this Spring, and it is much more size-appropriate! Having seen Karen’s (An Artist’s Garden) trio of them I am attempting to replicate the effect in the front of my front garden, where they can grow enormous without censure! I wish I had an area as weed-free as your top terrace…

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 10:24 am - Reply

      A trio of anemanthele is exactly what I had in mind. We’re in the process of clearing the first area of woodland, having had some trees and large limbs removed to let in more light (more on that soon). It gives me another fairly large area to play with and I had planned to put them in there. Think rustic box balls! As for the top terrace, how long can it last – that is the question.

  33. Cathy September 2, 2015 at 2:32 pm - Reply

    Wow – what progress! Just think, if you had had a half decent internet service you might have whiled away your hours online instead of removing chicken wire…! It looks as if things are beginning to come together now Jessica – does it feel that way to you?

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 10:29 am - Reply

      It’s giving me enough to visualise what it may look like, hopefully, in the years to come. If everything is left to grow (i.e. not munched) and gets through the winter then I hope it will look a lot better next year. I wonder if I can rig up some sort of device with the piles of mangled chicken wire to get satellite internet? It will certainly be a lot cheaper than the price we have been quoted 🙁

  34. kate@barnhouse September 2, 2015 at 2:33 pm - Reply

    Your steep slope is full of colour and texture, so inspiring, worth all the effort and pain. Try looking up Cyperus papyrus L., not quite the same as the sole one I grow, so I’m not sure. I’d lift and divide the Anemanthele lessoniana in mid to late spring if you want to be sure of keeping it, no doubt you have seedlings coming along to replace it. I think it looks good as you’ve planted it as an accent plant, but if the sprawl of inflorescense is a nuisance maybe pull it away as it fades to relieve the plants underneath?

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 11:26 am - Reply

      After a brief search this morning I’ve discovered my plant looks horribly like C. rotundus. It’s not an exact match which is perhaps just as well as it is described by wikipedia as ‘one of the most invasive weeds known’ EEEK! It is growing even in cracks in concrete here and certainly spreading like wildfire on the bank. The worrying thing is that C.rotundus has a flower stem that is triangular in cross section at the base. I’ve just been out with scissors and some trepidation and yes, so does mine.. But there are many others that look similar: C. difformis, houghtonii, longus L, longus var. badius.. so I’m now totally confused.

      • kate@barnhouse September 3, 2015 at 11:57 am - Reply

        Me too! Will you cull it if it is C. Rotundus?

        • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 2:00 pm - Reply

          It’s very pretty. It wasn’t a problem in my previous garden, but it has certainly taken off here. Maybe leave it a year and see how it goes, pulling up the excess. I may live to regret it..

  35. homeslip September 2, 2015 at 2:33 pm - Reply

    You have made progress and some! Next year will be even better, you wait. I was thinking that legs are very important when choosing what to plant on a slope and then you mentioned your ankle and Mike’s knee so I will just say look after yourselves. We stopped at Coleton Fishacre yesterday, a very steeply sloping garden once you get beyond the terraces around the house. Could offer some inspiration? And we stopped for a Somerset cream tea at Hauser & Wirth in torrential rain. Everyone, including the gardener, had to shelter under the cloisters. Piet’s planting shone and the gardener said it was meant to be viewed from a distance. He also said that Piet had been practising and refining his planting for 50 years which is why it was so good. Couldn’t argue with that!

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 11:33 am - Reply

      Coleton Fishacre is a beautiful garden and, yes, very inspirational. I’d better get to Hauser and Wirth soon. Things are starting to go over here now, quite rapidly. Legs are the most difficult thing. Getting the heights right is critical, otherwise one is looking at legs at eye level. Never a good idea!!

  36. Linfa from Each Little World September 2, 2015 at 8:01 pm - Reply

    I have a friend whose blog is The Impatient Gardener since that describes most of us. But everything is looking good and you do keep moving forward.

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 11:34 am - Reply

      Thanks Linda. The only way is up!

  37. Chloris September 2, 2015 at 11:01 pm - Reply

    It’ s all looking good Jessica, but what a job removing all that chicken wire. I don’ t know how you cope with gardening on that slope. I’ ve heard of Housemaid’ s Knee but not Housemaid’ s Ankle. On dear, gardening is a dangerous activity. I hope you get better soon.

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 11:37 am - Reply

      I’m possibly taking a bit of poetic licence with Housemaid’s Ankle. It’s just that the symptoms are similar to poor Mike’s knee. It doesn’t hurt so much to move around but pressure on the wrong place is agony, probably caused by the back of my gardening clogs digging in as I perched on the slope. Flat ground duties for a bit.

  38. Diana Studer September 2, 2015 at 11:09 pm - Reply

    It looks magnificent!
    Our Camps Bay garden was on a 45 degree slope, and I once slid down and cracked a rib.
    Now we have an old toffees garden on a v e r y gentle slope.

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 11:41 am - Reply

      I completely underestimated how hard it would be before we took it on, having always had a flat garden in the past. The bank ends in a vertical, 20′ drop off behind the house, where presumably they cut into the slope to build it however many hundreds of years ago. Mike has fallen off this drop off, on to the concrete below, and similarly nursed cracked ribs for a while. I don’t think I’ll be taking on a steep slope again!

  39. Peter/Outlaw September 3, 2015 at 3:02 pm - Reply

    Congratulations on getting rid of the chicken wire! Your garden is looking so beautiful, full and lush. Late summer is a special time in our gardens and, with the rain you’ve had, yours is looking especially nice.

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 9:40 pm - Reply

      Don’t think I want to see a piece of chicken wire ever again! Thanks Peter. I always have mixed feelings about late summer, so I’m enjoying it while we can.

  40. Joanne September 3, 2015 at 5:01 pm - Reply

    It all looks splendid, the last hurrah before winter xx

    • Jessica September 3, 2015 at 9:42 pm - Reply

      I’ll enjoy the hurrah, but not the winter! Thanks Joanne.

  41. Mise September 4, 2015 at 4:48 pm - Reply

    Happy feet up to you. Your place looks magnificent just now: a fully-fledged and peacefully executed country garden.

    • Jessica September 4, 2015 at 5:32 pm - Reply

      You’re very kind Mise, thank you. I always said it would be a ten year project. Only eight years of mountaineering still to go!

  42. Anna September 5, 2015 at 9:27 am - Reply

    Oh it’s looking good Jessica. I think that when you look at something every day you do not always realise just how much progress you’re making. I also have an overgrown anemanthele lessoniana (I struggle to remember its new name) which I want to divide but still leave a clump in the same place. My grass bible ‘Designing with Grasses’ by Neil Lucas advises that this is one grass that does not take kindly to division. This is not the news I wanted to hear. It’s best raised from seed he says. However if you are contemplating division he suggests dividing it whilst it’s still in the ground. The recommended method is to cut off and lift smaller sections with a sharp spade whilst leaving the majority of the plant still in the ground. As far as I can see unfortunately he does not recommend whether this is best done in autumn or spring so I’m pondering.

    • Jessica September 5, 2015 at 10:37 pm - Reply

      No, that isn’t good news. But what I’m finding is that there are plenty of progeny scattered all around the vicinity of the plant and they don’t take long to fill out. Perhaps we should just discard the parent and replant some of those?

  43. Julieanne September 8, 2015 at 11:46 am - Reply

    I’m impressed by the size of your Anemanthele lessoniana. Mine are quite small and against a north wall so look more russet orange-brown. The rain has indeed made your garden look very lush, and it’s good to know that after all that rain your slope hasn’t suffered from the removed chicken wire. This is a marvellous space and I like the way it hugs the house.

    • Jessica September 8, 2015 at 8:11 pm - Reply

      I was up there today and despite all the rain it’s rock hard again. I am using my little hand fork like a pick axe to try and free up the weeds. Anemanthele does get huge. I’m going to risk it and move it I think. It really needs a clump of three to look right and there isn’t the space. Perhaps with less sun they are smaller? The colour of yours sounds nicer too.

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