Monday, 23 September 2013

Plant swapping Sunday

Can you remember I have written about the Green Plant Swap website before? It is a UK website where you can make your own page and list the spare plants you have for swap or sale and then arrange to meet other gardeners in your local area to exchange plants. Last Sunday I had my first plant swap! I signed up in April and put just a few plants for swap/sale, just as a tester, but have quite a few photos of my garden and I have written a lot of info about my garden too.

About 10 days ago I was contacted by a woman who lives only about 5 miles from me and we have been exchanging messages via the website about our plants and about meeting – turns out she is just as mad about plants as I am! She collects daylilies and have lots of them, lots, she sent me a list of 92! I looked them up on the Internet and made a wish list, and last Sunday she came here with 9 for me, split from hers. The ones I got were big clumps so I was able to further split 3 of them so now I got 12 new daylilies. I also got a couple of other plants and she got 3 carrier bags of plants from my garden to take back.

This is such a great way to get free plants, but it is also an excellent way of meeting someone with the same passion for plants and gardening. And it turned out we have many other interests in common. We had a nice afternoon together and we are already talking about meeting next month. I am so excited about my new daylilies, can’t wait to see them in flower next summer. Here is a list of what I have got so far:

Hemerocallis ‘Double Coffee’
Hemerocallis ‘Eyes of Fire’
Hemerocallis ‘Exotic Echo’
Hemerocallis ‘Luxery Lace’
Hemerocallis ‘Lady Limelight’
Hemerocallis ‘Nanuq’
Hemerocallis ‘Neyron Rose’
Hemerocallis ‘Pink Damask’
Hemerocallis ‘Stoke Poges’

From before I had:
Hemerocallis 'Burning Daylight’
Hemerocallis 'Frans Hals'
Hemerocallis 'Moonlit Masquerade'

I am totally hooked and have been on a website to look at more daylilies to buy, I can’t get enough of them now!

Here is THE GREEN PLANT SWAP  website where you can sign up to get your own page, it is easy to fill in your own details and upload photos. I have been in touch with the owners of the Green Plant Swap and they are regularly improving this new service and can tell that new features and improvements will come in the future.

I have had a day in the garden today, always things to do and new ideas to try out. Today I dug up a very old Chaenomeles that didn’t look so good anymore and after a radical head and root pruning it is going to stay in a large pot for now. I also dug up an eaqually old, tatty honey suckle which ended in my compost bin, the result is I got an empty space! Always exciting with empty spaces in the garden, but I have already made purchases for this space.

A couple of weeks ago I bought a plant that has been on top of my wish list for more than  a year, a double frost hardy dwarf Gardenia, called Gardenia jasminoides 'Crown Jewel'. It will grow to 60cm tall and 1m wide and flowers on both old and new wood.

It will be perfect here in this space, but it is....ehm, still a bit small, you can hardly see it in this photo! I could not find any nursery growing a more mature plant so had no choice but to buy one this small. I have no idea how fast it will grow, haven’t managed to find out that, it might take 20 years to full size, or just 2, I have no idea, all I know is that small plants get big eventually!
Behind the tiny gardenia is another purchase I have made, my new clematis which will replace the honeysuckle. It is called ‘Mon Amour’ and have lovely deep blue, almost purple flowers. I hope it will flower next summer so I can show it off to you all.

I still have lots of flowers in my garden so I made a display in my glass bowl of some roses, sunflowers and the pretty red dahlia.

And my screw-on macro lenses haven’t been in use for a while so here are some close ups, Helianthus ‘Vanilla Ice’....

....and Dahlia 'Mary Eveline'.

I hope you have a look at the Green Plant Swap website if you live in UK, the more people that sign up, the more likely it is that someone near you will have plants you could be interested in. Here is MY PLANT PAGE  if you want to check out my Green Plant Swap plants available. And remember, when you get to meet people who share your passionate interest for plants, you might not just meet someone to give your spare plants to and get free plants to take home - you might even get a friend for life.
Until next time, take care.

24 comments:

  1. What a nice idea! I've participated in plant swaps at work a couple of times, but this seems like a good option, too. Your new Clematis sounds lovely. Will it snake up the obelisk you show in your picture? I love the bowl floral arrangement!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Beth, my new clematis will actually be only 2m tall, and you are right that it is meant for the obelisk, which I hope will be perfect height for it. Not like my other two clematises who have had to take over the camellia to climb onto because they both have run out of space!

      Delete
  2. That's a lot of day lilies - where will you put them?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am going to plant them all along my path on the left side with the leaves hanging out over the edge. I am doing some changes in my garden and there are more empty spaces which I haven’t showed yet…

      Delete
  3. Lovely to learn you met a new friend by plant swapping, I think it's always such fun to meet people with the same interest. I know your new Clematis 'Mon Amor', that's a beauty. I wonder what the Gardenia will do, it is new to me, I never heared before about a frost hardy Gardenia, so I will find out because it is very interesting.
    Your flower bowl looks beautiful!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I found the website for the American grower of the gardenia, here is some of what they say about it:

      The 'Crown Jewel' Gardenia was selected from a controlled cross of 'Kleim's Hardy' and 'Chuck Hayes' and developed by Oakmont Nursery in Chatham County, North Carolina. Gardenia ’Crown Jewel’ possesses many of the desirable traits of it’s parents: double bloom and cold hardiness of ’Chuck Hayes’ and heavy bloom set of ’Kleim’s Hardy’. It also has a dwarf spreading habit, double fragrant blooms and a soft texture but with much more cold hardinessHardiness: USDA Zone 6 to 10. Gardenia ’Crown Jewel’ also has a heavy bloom set, often later than most gardenias. This extremely compact and cold-hardy Gardenia is the essence of timeless beauty. GROWTH RATE: 6" per year.

      I guess that answers my own question about how long it will take to grow, mine is about 6” now so in another 3 years or so it will probably have reached full height of 24”.

      Delete
  4. What a great idea it is to have a plant swap like this. I wish there was something like that here. How nice to make a new gardening friend into the bargain. Her garden must be quite large to house 92 varieties of daylilies!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. She told me she had a smaller back garden than mine! But all her daylilies were in pots, none in the ground, and she has a larger front garden than me so perhaps she has some of them there too. But I got the impression she had a lot of pots!

      Delete
  5. That flower arrangement is so lovely. Yes, I love to get free plants and seeds :-). There are also many such societies in the US where you can swap plants and seeds. I got many native plants from one such society. I don't even have to offer anything :-).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know there are many plant swapping sites here too, but most of them are not so nicely made as this I have signed up to, I hope many more people find it and sign up, I have more plants to swap!

      Delete
  6. Helene, I love Gardenia and its flowers remind me camellias or azaleas. But I'm afraid I can't plant it here, so cold. I wish you success in Gardenia wintering!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I suppose it will be too cold during the winter in your garden for a gardenia Nadezda, even if it tolerates down to around minus 20-23 degrees C – see info I wrote to Janneke, but it can probably be much colder than that some winters?
      Thanks for your well-wishes, I will keep my plant in the pot this winter and plant it out next summer when it hopefully is a bit bigger.

      Delete
  7. Helene, I signed up last time you blogged about Green Plant Swap - sadly no gr owers remotely near me....YET! I live in hope :)
    In fact, with winter coming along, it might give me the perfect opportunity to get my page sorted out. Having had internet trouble for the last week, I've lots to catch up on, so not much time to do it this week.
    I hope you don't have to wait too long for your Gardenia to make a gorgeous statement in it's new home. I didn't realise they were as hardy as you have said.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great to hear you have signed up, the more people that sign up, the more likely you'll find someone near you!
      Looking forward to seeing your grower page, have looked for you but could not find you yet, guess you haven't made it public yet?

      Delete
    2. Yes, not public yet Helene as there is nothing on it. I will look for you once I'm up and running!

      Delete
  8. Hi Helene
    The Plant Swap - what a neat idea! And I can see you are on your way to becoming a daylily fanatic - good for you. Loved those flowers in a bowl. Beautiful way to display the blooms.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Astrid, yes, I have always been hooked on lilies - and now especially on daylilies!

      Delete
  9. So you finally got your gardenia - you know what they say about never buy your dream car! Hope it's everything that you hoped for. Your flower bowl looks beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes! Got my gardenia, and I look at it every day when I go out, still on my nursery shelf, hope it will grow quickly so I can plant it out next summer!

      Delete
  10. Hi Helene! Your plant swap experience sounds like such fun! All of your new dayliles sound fabulous! I look forward to seeing the lovely blooms. 'Lady Limelight' sounds very interesting (they all sound interesting though). I enjoyed your lovely post (great macros too)! :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am thoroughly hooked! There are so many lovely daylilies that I would love to have, if I just had more space! I hope to get a few more from my new plant swapping friend, will possibly just grow them in pots.

      Delete
    2. Daylilies are a very powerful (and fabulously fun) addiction, Helene! Welcome to the daylily daze! They do just fine in a roomy pot, so I'm sure you can fit more in that way. :-)

      Delete
  11. I love your flower arrangement -- gorgeous flowers and great colors. My favorite ahs to be that dahlia. Hope all is well -- and I'm loving the look of your website!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Kevin, and welcome back to my blog, haven’t seen you for a while :-)
      The dahlia 'Mary Eveline' was a new purchase last autumn and has turned out to be even more spectacular than I could hope for.

      Delete