Geranium

 

Geranium is tough, right?

Right! Geranium is a shrubby looking perennial plant, usually kept for their flowers and wonderful leaves. The older they get, the bigger and richer they bloom. It is one of my favorites. I like this hardy plant, its scent, the leaves, the colors… They forgive a lot of  mistakes. Also the keep blooming if you keep cutting them.

What they need: whatever garden soil,  water, a winter rest in a dark, cold (not under 5°C) place, and a lot of sun. Don’t forget to cut the withered leaves and flowers, so the plant can give you another round of blooms. I can’t wait to get some.

Inspiration:

Helleborus

The Helebore sp. ( Helleborus niger and H. hybridus) are evergreen and perennial plants. Quite decorative, if you ask me.

I keep wondering how’d it look if in a bright colored kusamono pot, specially the H. hybridus one. In the garden of my mother they are up to 50 cm high with leaves, as big as my head (and I have a big melon on my neck).

 

Bonus: some inspirational helleborus kusamono:

Galanthus sp.

These are two different Galanthus sp. (angustilolius and nivalis) in the garden of my mom.

Galanthus are bulbous, perennial, alpine plants. They do not seem to have a problem with the chalky soil in the garden. They bloom from early January to May in the wild, and they need the cold to bloom. Propagation: offset bulbs (dig them out very carefully in the dormant phase), or seeds (ants go crazy over the seeds).

G. angustifolius is a later blooming plant, from the Caucasus. Interestingly, they do not seem to propagate by themselves, not like the G.nivalis.

The bunch of G. nivalis was a gift from my grandma, from Romania. They grow vigorously.

 

 

Bonus:  have some inspirational snowdrop kusamono

a cautious spring greeting

I’ve been out in my new garden to look around, what’s growing out there on its own. So many beautiful primroses (Primula vulgaris) in different natural colors (white, buttercream and washed-out-cherryjuice-stain).

I’m quite happy with them, they’d make great kusamonos. BUT! I’ve just found out, they are on the Red List in Germany (which means, they cannot be collected, nor plucked). Fun fact, it needs a fungus as a root symbiont (Glomeromycota), and its seeds get propagated through ants. Sooo, I’ll try to be faster than the ants.

Mom has several true oxlip (Primula elatior) plants. She always collects the seedpods. I’ll bribe her to give me some, and I’ll grow some in a pot.

IMG_4945

Primula elatior

 

Also, I have a lot of false strawberries (Potentilla incica), colewort (Geum urbanum), and lots of lawn daisies (Bellis perennis). I’ll have really nice kusamonos.

My trees are, as far as I could see, all alive and budding nicely. Not one of them seems dead yet, although the rhododendron seem to have some stress. They are still in their pots from the shop, so that may be the problem.

inspirational bonus:

  • primula kusamono

 

  • Potentilla indica kusamono:img_8680

Cyclamen purpurascens

Accent plant:

The Cyclamen is an alpine plant, used to chalky soil, harsh winters and a lot of sunshine. Nevertheless, they don’t do well in the summer. I usually hide them somewhere shady and water them enough. It’s quite easy to propagate them, as they are bulbous plants. They produce a lot of baby bulbs you can easily pluck them out. Or you could go for their fruits.

IMG_4920.jpg  IMG_4919.jpg

some inspiration:

laurus nobilis

This is a Laurus my mom threw out, looked dead. I repotted and cut it back the dead parts. Now it’s budding back nicely, I’ll give it this year to do what it wants, to get strong and healthy.

general information:

  • evergreen shrub (up to 3-5 m) from the Mediterranean area, so it needs a lighthouse for the winter. Keep temperature under 18°C and over 0°C in winter.
  • watering: rain water (soft water)
  • soil: acidic soil, with good drainage, doesn’t like wet feet
  • bay laurel is evergreen, which means:  don’t defoliate fully (the plant is not going to thank you, trust me, I’ve been there.)
  • pruning: be careful, branches tend to die back, grows fast if well fed
  • repotting every second year

some inspiration:

DSC01341_zps2122c6a7 Styled by Nuno

update: now it looks so good, mom wants her bay laurel back… I have to get another one.