Thursday, 16 May 2013

Artfull Artichokes

Well, the artichoke seeds arrived, and as they are 'my department' I set about getting some seeds sown and tucked up nice and warm in a little propagator in the conservatory. Hopefully, even with the very little warmth we have had recently they will germinate, and make a stately appearance in the garden later. Having seen some of the truly beautiful botanical paintings of these fabulous vegetables by other artists, I can't wait to give them a go. Just take a look at the artichoke pieces by Susannah Blaxill and Yvonne Glenister Hammond to see what I mean. Meanwhile, feast your eyes on this beauty.

Two types of artichoke, green and purple will grace the garden.
Mind you, just reading the sowing instructions tells me
these should be in by now.
Pumpkin 'Munchkin', how could I not with a name like that. 

That particular project is some way off, so while I wait for the artichokes it's onto Clematis montana. yes, I have gone with the clematis as I just can't wait any longer to get something on the board and houseplants really aren't my thing. In fact, I tend to kill houseplants and only really have outdoor 'green fingers'. The only indoor thing that seems to do OK is orchids of all things. Strange but true.

The buds on these are always so pretty.

An obsession with thumbnails.
Or vignettes as I like to think of them, are my
little watercolour sketches that I make whilst
trying out compositions.

So, clematis. The fabulous and inspirational gardener Christopher Lloyd who created the stunning gardens at Great Dixter adored clematis, and used them to great effect throughout his planting schemes. As we have no natural height or change of level in our garden, we have planted a number of spring and summer flowering clematis to scramble over trellis, walls and through trees to create a 'layered' feel to our own plot. The clematis montana that covers the roof of the, 'bomb shelter' was the very first plant we added to the garden when we moved here, so has a rather sentimental meaning for me.  Rather apt that it should now form my first composition since graduating from the SBA course. 


Katherine Tyrrell said...

If you go to RHS Wisley or the Horticultural students veggies patches at Kew Gardens you'll see some very well developed globe artichokes in season - and cardoons.

I've been photographing them for years trying to work out what makes for the best composition!

Sketchbook Squirrel said...

Thanks for the tip Katherine. We Have been to Wisley a few times and always enjoy the veg area, usually just for planting ideas.

Really should get along there soon to check out plants and ideas for painting.