a french garden

Reflections on nature in a garden in France

A Week in Flowers, Day 5


Rose Veilchenblau 31.5.21

Now our summer is starting at the end of May. I have a confession to make – I am not a rose person!

I find they need too much care and fussing to get the most out of them. Kourosh looks after our roses and I just grumble a bit if they are not perfect.

Veilchenblau gets a special pass from me as I find it so special. Perhaps because it only flowers once in the season that I appreciate it more. Also the bees adore the flowers.

Verbena bonariensis 20.7.21

When the self seeded Verbena bonariensis is flowering throughout the garden it means that we are in mid summer.

Author: afrenchgarden

Born in Scotland I have lived in England, Iran, USA and Greece. The house and land was bought twelve years ago in fulfilment of the dream of living in France that my Francophile husband nurtured. We had spent frequent holidays in France touring the more northerly parts and enjoying the food, scenery, architecture and of course gardens. However, we felt that to retire in France and enjoy a more clement climate than we currently had in Aberdeen we would need to find somewhere south of the river Loire but not too south to make returning to visit the UK onerous. The year 2000 saw us buying our house and setting it up to receive us and the family on holidays. The garden was more a field and we were helped by my son to remove the fencing that had separated the previous owners’ goats, sheep and chickens. We did inherit some lovely old trees and decided to plant more fruit trees that would survive and mature with the minimum of care until we took up permanent residence. The move took place in 2006 and the love hate relation with the “garden” started. There was so much to do in the house that there was little energy left for the hard tasks in the garden. It was very much a slow process and a steep learning curve. Expenditures have been kept to a minimum. The majority of the plants have been cuttings and I try to gather seeds wherever I can. The fruit trees have all been bought but we have tender hearts and cannot resist the little unloved shrub at a discount price and take it as a matter of honour to nurse it back to health. This year I have launched my Blog hoping to reach out to other gardeners in other countries. My aim is to make a garden for people to enjoy, providing shady and sunny spots with plants that enjoy living in this area with its limestone based subsoil and low rainfall in a warm summer. Exchanging ideas and exploring mutual problems will enrich my experience trying to form my French garden.

15 thoughts on “A Week in Flowers, Day 5

  1. I am somewhat relieved to find out that I am not the only person in the world who does not like roses much! I mean, I do love them when I see them, but have absolutely no desire to grow them! I suppose it is mainly the thorns. Your violet one really is gorgeous though, and no doubt adds some beauty and colour to the garden. I would definitely not want to be without Verbena bonariensis though! 😃 Thanks for sharing Amelia.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I confess not to be much of a rose person either as far as growing them, but your Veilchenblau is a lovely rich color I admire. Verbena bonariensis is the opposite in term of care requirements–great value in the garden for butterflies and bees (and gardeners).

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Your rose is a beautiful colour and I bet it has an amazing scent – the best thing about roses I find. Although I have a few roses in my garden I’m not hugely keen on growing them either, though I do like seeing them in other gardens, I’m the same regarding Dahlias!

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    • I have changed my mind about Dahlias this year. They do not get enough rain here to do really well but because they have tubers they persist in the hot and dry soil and will have good years if there is a bit more rain. Amelia

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  4. That’s a beautiful rose with an enticing colour and I love the ones that show off their stamens and welcome the insects. I am a rose person 🙂 but yes they are a bit fussy!

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  5. I’m not keen on roses myself but the verbena is good value for insects. That’s an excellent picture of the bee with its tongue out, is it an Anthophora?

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is an Amegilla. I do not think you get them in the U.K. I get a lot of them in the summer and they are particular favourites. They fly extremely fast and are very fond of the Verbena and the Lavender flowers. Amelia


  6. Your bees are so adorable! I love the shape of their nose/mouth or whatever it is called. Your Veilchenblau immediately caught my eye… I planted one here many years ago and was really looking forward to it, but alas, it died. So, it’s nice to see yours!

    Liked by 1 person

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