{'B' is for...}

B is for brilliantly blue Bluebell. 

Hyacinthoides non-scripta, otherwise known by its common name of English Bluebell, and Hyacinthoides hispanica - Spanish Bluebell, are spring flowering perennial bulbs. To gain the full beauty of these plants they are best planted en mass where their bell shaped flowers carpet the ground in shades of jacaranda-lavender blue.

They are both hardy, can tolerate root competition (perfect under trees!) and cope with summer dryness when they are dormant. The Spanish Bluebell is somewhat more hardy with more robust flowers but lack fragrance. 

Plant bulbs 6cm deep, 5-10cm apart, in Autumn in shady to semi-shaded areas. They grow perfectly under deciduous/semi-deciduous trees where they can brighten up the darker areas of the garden. Start watering when growth appears and keep soil slightly moist until foliage dies off after flowering. It is ideal to keep bulbs relatively dry whilst dormant.

In Europe, fields of bluebells can be admired amongst woodland settings. I loved watching the movie "Bright Star" (said to be about the love story between the romantic poet Keats and Fanny Brawne) just for the seen where Fanny (played by Australian actress, Abbie Cornish) sits surrounded by bluebells.

According to the language of flowers, the meaning of Bluebell is 'Constancy'. I guess when everything else in your garden is changing you can always rely on the Bluebells to show their pretty faces each spring without fail. Bless!

{'A' is for...}

A is for the very adorable Anemone - in any shape and form they come in! Delicate and elegant, serene and oh so pretty!

Anemones are members of the buttercup family. In spring the cute as a button Poppy Anemone (A. coronaria) bloom their pretty little faces off and make the sweetest cut flower used in pretty posy arrangements. While the autumn garden can be brought to life with massed plantings of Anemone x hybrida (Japanese Windflower). 

The name ‘Anemone’ comes from the Greek word for wind. It is said that the goddess Flora was jealous of her husband's attentions towards the nymph Anemone and so transformed her into the wind flower and left her at the mercy of the North Wind. Kind of a sad story for such a pretty flower...

{the alphabet in flowers}

I often get asked what my favourite flowers or plants are. For me this is like asking a Mother if she has a favourite child! I don't do favourites as such, I love all plants and flowers (with or without their roots!), and believe even the 'ugly' ones are 'interesting' and just misunderstood.

But the question has got me thinking if I had to offer a name for each letter of the alphabet what would I choose? I came up with the following list:

A = Anemone
B = Bluebells
C = Cecile Brunner Rose
D = Daphne
E = Early Cheers
F = Forget-me-nots
G = Gardenia
H = Hellebores
I = Iris
J = Jonquils
K = Kangaroo Paw
L = Lavender
M = Magnolia
N = Nepeta (Catnip/Catmint)
O = Orchids
P = Peony Roses
Q = Queen Anne's Lace
R = Ranunculus
S = Snowdrops or Sweet Peas - can't decide ???
T = Tulips
U = Ulmus parvifolia (Chinese Elm)
V = Violets
W = Wisteria
X = Xanthorrhoea (Grass Tree)
Y = Yellow - anything yellow!!
Z = Zephranthes candida (Storm Crocus)

So, over the next few posts (yes I will commit to this) I will share tid-bits about each and why I love them so!