My stroll around den Haan's garden centre in Middleton on Friday gave me a much-needed boost. There's something about the scent of warm soil, green growing plants, and humid air that just makes me feel much better about life in general. There were a lot of plants I could have taken home with me. I love the abutilons, but they were looking a bit spindly after the winter, though still flowering joyously.
There are certainly a lot of colours that weren't available when I first grew these mumblety-seventeen years ago, at Agricultural College. I always had one or two in my room on campus, though they were prone to sulking in the dry air.
There were a LOT Of pansy geraniums, also known as Martha Washingtons and Regal geraniums. I happen to love these, both for their scented foliage and their really handsome flowers, and this one came home with me. The photo doesn't do it justice; the flowers are a very, very deep wine, about the colour of a good Wolf Blass Shiraz wine. (why yes, that's my favourite red, why do you ask?) And in fact, this variety is called 'Maiden Burgundy.'
So bemused was I by the happy blossoms I never thought to check the other regals for their cultivar names. I almost brought this one home too, but was distracted by the lavender instead.
Aren't they great? I know that magenta isn't to everyone's liking, but at this time of year, nothing brightens a blog post like an outburst of magenta...
Or maybe you prefer this hot pink one with the red accents. I like it but really the burgundy one did the trick for me best. I think this and the magenta cultivar may be among the longest-existing colours, which is probably why I tend to look at them, smile, and move on to the next. Familiarity, and all that.
And finally, the plant that has caused me a great deal of plant-want-angst this winter, the clivia. Kylee has one, and I know some of our other fellow bloggers have them too, but it's Sunday morning and I can barely find the top of my desk, let alone references to clivia in other blogs. I stood and looked and looked and looked at this plant at the nursery, and almost--I repeat, almost--brought it home. But it's expensive (moreso than the orchids) and I just wasn't sure I could justify it, so you know what happens...I get you guys to talk me into it. After all, I can't buy any outdoor plants yet. So let the convincing begin!
(and longsuffering spouse, you might listen to them...just sayin'.)