Six on Saturday 10th July

Good morning, it’s Six on Saturday time again! The Propagator will be leading the way, as well as hosting a selection of other Six on Saturday posts from around the world. As I’m sure you are all acutely aware, the garden is a busy place at the moment; both for the gardener and their plants. This all makes it a little tricky to decide where to start, so I may as well begin with a Corydalis:

1. Corydalis calycosa

Six on saturday corydalis calycosa

It’s a beauty, that’s for sure. Corydalis flexuosa, elata, omeiana, the various hybrids; they are all described as ‘vivid blue’, ‘stunning blue’ or something to that effect. At the moment, Corydalis calycosa is topping the charts for blue-ness.

Interestingly, it seems to be doing something that is slightly undesirable in the long run. Namely, it is growing extremely well, but not really spreading. The problem is that the nurseries tend to use very rich compost with long-release fertiliser in. Obviously this is necessary from their perspective as the plants grow quickly and healthily. It does have the downside that the plants don’t settle into the garden particularly well. Herbaceous Corydalis and Dicentras like to spread, given the choice, but the rich compost inhibits their natural tendencies. Ultimately it gives you a great plant in the first year, instead of a great plant in future years. Note to self: be more brutal when planting, and tease out more of the soil from the roots!

2. Dicentra peregrina

six on saturday dicentra peregrina

I’ve mentioned the progress of Dicentra peregrina a few times previously. I’ve now potted on 5 tiny little seedlings. I’m beginning to think that the original seedling might be a hybrid with one of the D. formosa cultivars. It germinated much earlier, and had a less extensive root system than the other seedlings. The later germinating specimens are more uniform and have roots that reach straight downwards to the bottom of the pot.

3. Hydrangea quercifolia

six on saturday hydrangea

Now here’s a good looking chap (sadly not well represented by the photo). The flowers have come out really well this year, due to all the rain I suspect. It was grown from a cutting and is starting to look really good. Being a slow grower, it’s all the more rewarding once it starts to mature.

Sweet pepper

sweet pepper

Here’s another plant that featured on a previous Six on Saturday: ‘Healthy’ an extremely early Sweet Pepper. It now has a couple of fruits ripening and show no signs of slowing down either. I’m amazed by how well it grows and how early it’s fruits mature.

Catananche caerulea ‘Alba’


Another mediocre photo of a fantastic plant. I have both white and blue flowered versions of Catananche; either are good choices. It has an airy sort of appearance due to it’s fine leaves and stems, so despite being a fair size, it sits at the front of the border. The buds and the seedbeds look very similar, with the open flowers adding splashes of colour.

6. Oxalis semiloba

This one’s a bit of a peculiar fellow. The flowers are lovely, the leaves have a deep purple reverse, but the plant as a whole is a floppy, tangled mess. It currently lives in the greenhouse with the other Oxalis as I seem to recall reading that it likes a bit of heat. I’m not quite sure what to do with it, or whether I should just accept it’s eccentricities. Advice welcome!

Thus ends today’s SoS. Have a great weekend, and happy gardening!

18 thoughts on “Six on Saturday 10th July”

  1. We have taken particular note of Dicentra formosa this year and they really have the most wonderful length of flowering; great garden plants.

  2. I saw on IG this morning the Corydalis calycosa and you’re right…it’s a beauty!
    It’s good to see these sweet peppers on their way too…

  3. Now that is what happened to all my blue flowering summer corydalis. As your spring flowering ones have been great, I really hope that you shop will carry some summer ones that will keep for more than a year. Which ones would you suggest?

    1. I’m working on it! At the moment it’s just ‘Craigton Blue’ which has always done very well for me. I’ve got ‘Purple Leaf’ and flexuosa sp. on the way too – both good growers. I had one called ‘Spinners’ which did really well for ages, but then mysteriously disappeared. Worth looking out for.

  4. Ah, Catananche. I always admire the blue varieties in my mum’s garden but struggle to grow it myself for some reason. The blue of the Corydalis calycosa is stunning.

  5. Hydrangea quercifolia is a very handsome plant, really one of the best hydrangeas. Will look out for suitable cutting material in the local park where I saw they had one! What a nice looking sweet pepper too.

  6. The hydrangea has such great leaves (not something that can be said of hydrangeas in general). The early maturing pepper seems well worth growing. I’m not sure about the Oxalis other than to treat it like a trailing lobelia and place it with another plant that provides the height while it does the soft trailing edges.

    1. I completely agree about the leaves of the Hydrangea – they add a bit of interest outside of the flowering time too.

      I’ll let you know how I get on with the Oxalis!

  7. I can appreciate why you’ve put Calycosa at Number one. It’s a beauty. What height/spread would it normally get to?
    Eccentricities? What would life be like if we all grew only grass? I have no oxalis advice, but when it comes to the other… dance around the droopy mess by moonlight!
    I wonder do plants know the difference between a boring oul gardener and one filled with the joys of life? I’m speaking for myself, naturally.

    1. It currently stands at about 30cm high, which I believe is about the extent of it. Width-wise, it should continue to spread to make a sizeable clump in time.

      Personally, I think plants are aware of more than we know. They certainly like to be left alone in preference to being primped and preened!

  8. Stunning blue starter! I cannot seem to germinate, let alone grow, peppers and chillies. I’ll try again next season.

    1. I do tend to start the chillies and peppers in the heated propagator. I think the steady heat provides a more reliable germination.

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