Let's hear it for the self-sowns
Over the past couple of years it's interesting to see what has chosen to appear in the gravel path in the back garden. Some are plants which have hopped over from the borders where I planted them and others have reappeared many years after I last had them here at VP Gardens. I think most of them are from my own activities rather than blow-ins or bird distribution from elsewhere.
They give me a neat dilemma: do I treat them like weeds and get rid, or should I do something with them? Luckily most of the plants that have appeared so far are either low growing, or not enough to prevent our use of the path for what it was designed for. They could stay put if I so desired.
The warmer weather over the past week or so has signalled it's time - at last - to clear away the over wintering stems and the rest of the debris I left in the garden to shelter overwintering insects and to feed the birds. It's also decision time on what to do with those self-sown plants.
I've decided to move most of the pictured lady-in-the-bath aka Lamprocpanos spectabilis into the revamped bed at the bottom of the garden. The white alba version is here already, but they're proving a bit weak and straggly compared to this more robust acting species. They also serve to disguise the dying foliage of the bulbs and provide a fern-like loveliness in the shadier parts.
I was surprised to find how much root there was to these plants compared to what's appeared above the ground. Imagine an iceberg equivalent in the plant world and you'll get the picture. The roots are brittle too, so I hope I haven't damaged them too much in the process of transplantation... a couple of days on and they look good so far *crosses fingers*.
Joining them are the foxgloves which have reappeared after several years absence and will give some much needed height, plus a Brunnera 'Jack Frost' one of my garden favourites. Secretly I'd love it if it self-seeded some more as I have a vision of it lining the entire shady border.