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Happy gardening!

Sunday, 19 February 2012

A gift from a friend....

As a gardener, receiving a plant from a friend is always a wonderful present and even more precious if it's been home grown. 

Walking around the garden after all the extremely cold weather we've had recently in northern Brittany, there is still relatively little colour in the garden apart from this rather stunning Iris reticulata - which I received last year as a gift from a gardener/designer friend in London.  It was beautifully potted up with its own wooden label (a recycled lolly pop stick- an idea worth considering)  which had been marked in pencil and which I planted out in the autumn.  It now occupies a sheltered spot near to the house and has been in bloom now for a good couple of weeks despite the freezing temperatures.  Its vivid colouring certainly brightens up the garden and definitely a spring bulb worth considering.


It's lovely to have reminders as you walk around the garden of friends and family (past and present). When we moved to France some 8 or so years ago I know the plants in my garden in Bristol, UK that I was most keen to bring with us were those that I had received as gifts - a rose ( Jacques Cartier) that I'd received as a leaving present from another gardening friend is now flourishing in our garden here and is a lovely reminder of our visits together to garden centres enjoying the odd bacon sandwich with a cup of coffee as we did.... something unfortunately that we don't get in France! 

There are also many reminders of the many visits to Cornish gardens & nurseries with my Mum and Dad over the last number of years during my visits to see them when they lived down there. 
Another favourite of mine is the Rose Sourire D'Orchidee which a client gave me - one they'd grown themselves from a cutting.

Why not consider something which is both easy and  fun, and that is to save both cuttings and seeds to give as gifts - it doesn't take a great deal of effort but there is a lot of joy in being able to share something that you've either grown yourself or that comes from your garden. 

Knowing as you wander around the garden as I love to do when time allows (normally accompanied by a mug of coffee) that different plants were given to you from different friends and family is very special.



23 comments:

Janet said...

I have a phlomis given to me by a friend. It is a plant that has long term value with the flowers and then the seed heads. Being a good friend she is forgiven for giving me something yellow and upsetting my so so tasteful colour scheme. But aa a plant I love it.

HolleyGarden said...

I really enjoyed hearing about the different gifts in your garden. I love when sentiment is attached to a plant. And I love your idea about giving cuttings and seeds as a gift.

debsgarden said...

Hi, Miranda! I love to walk around my garden and remember friends who have given me various plants. Anyone who knows me well knows I much prefer something for the garden over cut flowers, though I appreciate those too! I came across a patch of iris reticulata a couple years ago. They were in the woodlands and the gorgeous color caught my eye from a distance. I had never seen them in previous years, and the odd thing is I have not seen them since. I keep looking for them to return!

Midmarsh John said...

A beautiful little Iris. Always nice to receive the gift of a plant or to swap plants.

PatioPatch said...

just discovered you too Miranda and this charming plant gift post with all its memories and meanings. Prefer the delicate single roses myself

NHGarden said...

Beautiful Iris!

Miranda Bell said...

Janet - many thanks for visiting again - I also have Phlomis here - both pale pink and also pale yellow and am very fond of this plant - both given by friends and as you say their seed heads are great - I've still got some remaining... you'll notice the frosted pic at the top of my blog page!

Brittanygirl said...

Hello Miranda

I have presented you with a Versatile Blogging Award. See my blog http://livingin22.blogspot.com

You can see what you need to do next!

Sandra x

Miranda Bell said...

Hi Holley Garden - glad you enjoyed my posting - another thing we do in France is have a plant swap which is open to anyone - all we do is take along what we've got too much of in the garden and also seeds and simply swap them - no money changes hands and it's a great way to meet some new people! Might be something worth considering if this doesn't exist near to where you are?

Miranda Bell said...

Hi Debs - thank you - nothing nicer than a stroll round the garden to check out what is coming out... always surprises! Sorry you can't find your Irises - maybe a small purchase is in order!? Buying plants and seeds is a terrible addiction as a gardener! :-)

Miranda Bell said...

MMJ - thanks for visiting - you're absolutely right! Goldfinch pair are still here and there was infact a third addition to the group this morning!

Miranda Bell said...

Hi Patiopatch - thankyou so much for visiting my blog - I also love single flowered roses too :-) Look forward to you visiting again... Miranda

Janet/Plantaliscious said...

Hi Miranda, thanks for dropping by my blog and leaving a comment. I am a big fan of Iris reticulata, though they never seem to do well in the ground for me, I keep them in pots instead. I agree that there is something particularly special about plants that have been given as presents, and one of the joys of growing things from seeds and cuttings is being able to share the results with friends and family.

The Sage Butterfly said...

I agree...it is nice to look around the garden and remember what was given to me and where I obtained other plants. I also like giving many of my plants or cuttings as gifts. To me, no gift is better than a gift from the garden.

Pam's English Garden said...

Dear Miranda, Thank you so much for visiting my blog, enabling me to find yours! Love this charming posting with its beautiful images. P. x

Rosie@leavesnbloom said...

Hi Miranda - it seems like so long since I last visited. I noticed this week that my clumps of Iris reticulata have just started to bloom. At this time of year we really appreciate the few blooms that there are.

Miranda Bell said...

NH Garden - thanks so much for visiting and v. glad you enjoyed my posting.. have a good weekend Miranda

Miranda Bell said...

Hi Sandra - I'm honoured to recieve such an award and thankyou so much. My apologies for not replying sooner but have been struggling with a horrible flu thing this week that my lovely hubby passed to me after his recent trip to the UK! :-) I'll go and take a look at your blog to work out what to do... do hope you're okay as well and will visit again soon - Miranda x

Miranda Bell said...

Hi Janet - many thanks for your encouraging comments - putting bulbs into pots is always a good idea too - I must admit I did pot up a lot of bulbs this year as the weather turned cold quite quickly here in late autumn so will be planting them out again v. soon. Have a good weekend - Miranda

Miranda Bell said...

Hi Sage Butterfly - I'm totally with you on that one - there is no nicer gift than either one from the garden or one that someone has made themselves... like homemade cards too! Have a lovely weekend - Miranda

Miranda Bell said...

Hi Pam - a very warm welcome to my blog - a few miles over the water I know but we actually have a very similar climate in Brittany to the south of England in particular. V. pleased you enjoyed my posting and will look forward to visiting your own blog again v. soon - Miranda

Miranda Bell said...

Dear Rosie - it's always lovely to see a familiar "face" back visiting - I for one know how hard it is to keep up my blog all year round let alone visit all my favorites! Glad you've got some colour in your garden at the moment as I believe that it's a less cold winter up in your neck of the woods compared to last year! Will visit your blog again v. soon - take care Miranda x

Gail said...

I appreciate the plants my friends have shared~Gardeners are the bestest folks! gail