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Spuds a Chitting

January 26, 2017


I doubled up on this collection including a new variety of salad potato ‘Pippa’ .  It’s bred from Pink Fir Apples and offers a pink blush and waxy yellow flesh. The other two are favourites: Lady Christi is a 1st early and stays firm when cooked and has good disease resistance. And Charlotte is a second early which can be left in the ground till early Autumn.

I spotted a packet of 4 organic baby leeks in the supermarket for £2.50 which makes my twenty or so babies worth £14.  So in the diary for this year is a reminder to sow seeds mid-summer for a row or two of tender little leeks perfect for this simple recipe. The trout fillets were pan-fried for eight minutes skin side down whilst the leeks were saute in a little butter for about 30 minutes and then assembled with basmati rice.


I had a last-minute inspiration to serve it with the celeriac and beetroot pickle made three weeks ago and it was excellent together.1-imgp1452

The blast of intense perfume from the Sarcococca and the Viburnum ‘Dawn’ currently in flower makes me crave more scented plants in the garden at this time of year. So I rounded up two pots of Iris unguicularis which are a little underwhelming at the moment but I am optimistic for next year. The rhizomes can be divided in Spring to increase the patch.


They will be planted at the base of a wall facing South West behind the variegated leaves of Italian arum ‘Marmoratum’.1-imgp1542

The garden is looking scruffy and dormant and all the beds are desperately in need of a gentle raking. It’s too chilly to get out there but the first job will be to cut back the leaves on the hellebores to expose the flowers which are just emerging at soil level.


With very little to pick I decided to forfeit a Helleborus angustifolius with its huge, fat, cream flowers now in a vase surrounded by arum leaves and Euphorbia robbiae to bulk up the greenery.


8 Comments leave one →
  1. January 26, 2017 12:04 pm

    love Iris unguicularis, but they hate being disturbed. Mine took a couple of years before it flowered and to increase stock I then just took some of the plant from the side. The original clump is now large and flowers continuously from November through to April. So I wouldn’t divide the pots you have.

  2. January 26, 2017 12:07 pm

    Thanks for that tip and I shall look to see if anything obvious could be taken from the sides when I plant. I’m very pleased to have found them since it took a trawl of local garden centres to finally round them up.

  3. January 26, 2017 3:41 pm

    My hellebore leaves desperately need cutting back. But a run out to the greenhouse to water was quite enough. It is bitter out there.

  4. January 26, 2017 4:48 pm

    You must be feeling it after a return from mid-summer Australia. I’ve loved your blogs and images.

  5. January 30, 2017 4:49 pm

    Your photos are always a wonderful vicarious walk through an artistic botanical dreamland! Truly refreshing! 🙂

  6. January 30, 2017 8:39 pm

    Thank you so much.

  7. February 1, 2017 2:13 pm

    I love that combination of arum and archangel and since I’ve just rooted some lamium I might just be copying you!

  8. February 1, 2017 2:19 pm

    The hellebore drooped rather quickly but the rest remained bonny for the week. I’m now about to trawl for a vase of something for this week and I’m not optimistic so it may have to be bought tulips!!

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