Garden Bloggers' Blooms Day: Diascia
I came across Diascia (aka Twinspur) for the first time 20 years ago when I started going to Franks Plants sales here in Chippenham. The blooms resemble those of Snapdragons, though the plants are more compact and like their Antirrhinum cousin, they're sold as bedding plants.
Back then I used them as a filler plant for my borders; this year they're performing a similar role in some of my patio pots and provide a good dash of colour there in their preferred sunny spot. I learnt by accident* with my first planting that these can survive the winter and are in fact perennials, not annuals like most plants sold as bedding. It makes them a bargain plant in my view.
Salmon isn't my first choice of colour, but as many of you know getting hold of plants under Lockdown has proved challenging. Now it's here, the colour's growing on me ('scuse pun). I was really pleased to find out on the grapevine back in late March Meadow Farm Nurseries had a list of plants for sale, and would do delivery to within a 5 mile radius of the nursery. We're just within that magic circle!
It seems things have come full circle this year, not only with respect to using Diascia in my planting scheme, but also Meadow Farm Nurseries are the 'grandson' of Franks Plants i.e. they've taken on the business from the company who took over from Frank. Instead it was Derek - not Frank - who delivered my order of very healthy plants back in April, which included a return to my favourite Petunia 'Night Sky' (pictured above) for my front door hanging basket this year.
They've not been able to do the usual sales at local schools this year owing to the Lockdown, so I've been pleased to support them in this alternative way. It seems they've been rather surprised at how well the local social media grapevine worked, because they've been inundated with requests. Sadly they're not taking any more orders in this way, and have decided to focus on their regular non-school sales customers instead. I think that's a wise business decision, even though I can't buy from them again this season.
It's just as well I tucked in a few extras to make up the minimum order!
How's your plant buying gone under Lockdown?
* = because I forgot to clear them away in the autumn and then noticed plenty of fresh new growth in the spring.
Garden Bloggers' Blooms Day is hosted by Carol at May Dreams Gardens.
Latin without tears
The name Diascia is formed from the Greek for two, di and askos meaning sac. The latter part refers to the two spurs on the flower. This is also where the common name 'Twinspur' comes from.