Wednesday, 21 June 2017

In Annie's Flowergarden

My Sweetness is on long service leave at the moment, so we recently took the opportunity to travel for a couple of weeks around Victoria. I'm not sure exactly what it is about the Victorian countryside, but I feel very at home there, and could quite easily make the move south.

Perhaps I'm drawn to Victoria's gardens, of which we visited many. I will share some of them in the next few posts. The most special of them belonged to Annie Flowergarden!

Being in the Ballarat vicinity, I contacted Annie, Little Red Hen Jan and Ric-Rac Jodie, giving them very little notice, in the hope that they might be available for a coffee. Annie promptly offered to have us all to her garden for 'tea in the hothouse'. I had secretly hoped I'd get to see her hothouse and garden, but didn't want to invite myself! Awesome!

Annie's garden is a treasure trove of plants. We spent a good hour in the late afternoon wandering from plant to plant, ooh-ing and ahh-ing at every turn. Poor Jodie was unable to make it on the day (some feeble excuse about preparation for a little Quilt Market in the US or something ;) Had she been there we probably would have bored her stupid with our flower talk! Thankfully, Jan was equally plant-mad, and so coped very well :)

The first of the treasures to greet us was this Angel's Trumpet (Brugmansia sp.) with its delicious blush of apricot. I say delicious with some poetic licence considering all parts of it are highly toxic!

Another of the treasures was this sweet clematis:

I don't remember what Annie said this was. Perhaps Clematis cirrhosa? I've never seen an autumn flowering clematis. It has made it to my 'must have' list!

The blooms are remarkably similar to those of hellebore, which I guess is due to them both being genera of the Ranunculaceae (or buttercup) family.

If there's one group of plants that join Annie and I at the hip as gardeners, I think it's the Salvia species. Her garden is full of many of them. And they are delightful in late autumn. 

The Salvia leucanthas were particularly lovely, with their soft, downy drops of velvet, in purples and whites.

We made our way to Annie's hothouse which she has cleverly fashioned with reclaimed old windows. I was so busy photographing flower close ups, that I forgot to record the big picture - this is Annie's image of her hothouse:

In this warm, cosy, glass enclosed refuge of Annie's property, she coaxes the best from plants that otherwise wouldn't cope in the elements outside. I mean, what even is this gorgeous pink and purple thing Annie? Just stunning! 

I may have remembered Annie saying something about it looking like match sticks, and after a quick Google, found that it is a bromeliad, Aechmea gamosepala.

She has beautiful begonias, cascading from hanging baskets, bathing in the warmth ...

... and frost prone succulents and zygocacti (Schlumbergera truncata) growing luxuriantly.

Two of the things that impress me about Annie are her resilience and resourcefulness, not only in the garden, but as a person! Certainly in the garden, she is a marvel. Not one to give up, she has literally grown plants on top of concrete! And not just in pots! Agapanthus have been placed against the fence directly on the concrete, mulched repeatedly and are growing perfectly. Where there is a will, there is a way!

I am so happy to have seen Annie's garden. I have followed her blog for many years now, and we have exchanged many messages and plants in that time. Thank you Annie for your generosity in having us visit on such short notice. I could have talked with you for hours. Perhaps our men were relieved when darkness fell, and we had to part!


  1. Wasn't it such a lovely afternoon, Ros. Annie and her garden are very special. It was great to see you - thank you for getting in touch. Do you have a wintersweet bush in your garden? Mine is blooming its head off right now - I picked some branches yesterday and the blossoms are scenting my whole house.

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Ros, it was just lovely to have you in my garden and share our joy and passion. You are welcome anytime you need a Victorian fix. The spare room is ready for you. What a special post and written so beautifully...thank you xo

  4. What a lovely garden! Many thanks for enlightening me about the " angel's trumpet" - I have been admiring one in the front yard of a nearby house for some time, but never knew what it was called before!

  5. Beautiful garden! It is absolutely a plant haven. Lucky of you to see it up close and personal. Thanks for the feature on Annie's lovely garden, I now have another blog to read and a garden to stalk.

  6. I have subscribed to follow by email but haven't received an email with the confirm link so am unable to confirm.
    Are you able to send an email with the confirmation link?

    Kerrie (


Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Blogging tips