Photoblog

Coloured trumpets at the seaside and in our gardens15.09.2019
I love summer and all summer related - sun, heat, colours etc. And where do we found all of that for sure? On a summer holiday at the seaside of course. I remember when I was about 20 I made my first solo trip to the coast of southern France. I wss intoxicated by the explosion of colours and shapes of - for me - exotic plants in the gardens. Only in the gardens because everywhere else the land was dry and rigid and only rosemary, cacti, and similar prickly plants could live there struggling for every dew of morning mist. It took me many years to appreciate duly these little fighters, however, then I was attracted to the juicy explosion of irrigated life.

One plant, unknown to me then, was creeping along fences, climbing up walls, and showing off arching next to forged gateways. You may say 'it is a trumpet creeper, of course, everyobody knows it'. Well, almost everyone surely does - now, but not almost 30 years ago :-)
Coloured trumpets at the seaside and in our gardens15.09.2019
After my return from holiday I started searching for this plant all over the country. I noticed a few plants not far from my home so I just rang the bell and ask the lord of the house to tell me something about it. In all cases the people were so nice and talkative, and it was clear that they were flattered to be able to boast about their unique climber. In the end I knew everything I needed. Got you, trumpet creeper! And would not let go.

From that moment I turned into a passionate collecter of these colorful climbers and when I established a garden centre campsis became an important feature. If you like them, too, come and have a look at some of them.
Coloured trumpets at the seaside and in our gardens15.09.2019
Flava
Coloured trumpets at the seaside and in our gardens15.09.2019
Chinese trumpet vine
Coloured trumpets at the seaside and in our gardens15.09.2019
Madame Galen
Coloured trumpets at the seaside and in our gardens15.09.2019
Indian Summer
Coloured trumpets at the seaside and in our gardens15.09.2019
SUMMER JAZZ™ FIRE
Coloured trumpets at the seaside and in our gardens15.09.2019
SUMMER JAZZ™ GOLD
Coloured trumpets at the seaside and in our gardens15.09.2019
Campsis can also be trained into a tree. A good support is needed all the time.
Coloured trumpets at the seaside and in our gardens15.09.2019
Coloured trumpets at the seaside and in our gardens15.09.2019
Or a shrub.
Coloured trumpets at the seaside and in our gardens15.09.2019
It loves sun and spring pruning - cut it back to 2-3 pairs of live buds before they begin to swell.
Coloured trumpets at the seaside and in our gardens15.09.2019
My oldest specimen is not 20 years old and works as a curtain, blinds, and A/C because the top branches lying on the roof absorb all excess heat so the lounge is nicely cool even in hot summer. How about you, will you go for one as well? ;-)
If only all beings are happy08.09.2019
... we wanted to say so many time. Now the writing's on the wall :-)
Prince Charming of August - Joe Pye Weed25.08.2019
Prince Charming of August - Joe Pye Weed25.08.2019
Prince Charming of August - Joe Pye Weed25.08.2019
Prince Charming of August - Joe Pye Weed25.08.2019
Prince Charming of August - Joe Pye Weed25.08.2019
Prince Charming of August - Joe Pye Weed25.08.2019
Prince Charming of August - Joe Pye Weed25.08.2019
Prince Charming of August - Joe Pye Weed25.08.2019
Loose yourself to strife12.08.2019
If you live somewhere in the country where the ground is not too dry, or possibly if you stay in the south of our country you must have recently noticed this plant growing wild in marshy gutters along the roads or in moist and wet meadows and fields. Its bright purple pink flowers simply cannot be missed when staring out of the car window, especially when the driver gets a bit (or more) boring. Its name is purple loosestrife. They bloom from mid July until early September.

We are lucky that those in orange waistcoats who clean the gutters on regular basis understand the word 'regular' as 'maximum twice a year', thus giving the plants enough time to grow tall and set flowers. Only a week or so ago I met one of them mowing the grass at the outskirts of České Budějovice and when he saw this beautiful plant he left it growing in the middle of the turf, mowing carefully around it. Bravo, my orange waistcoated son!
Loose yourself to strife12.08.2019
Its common English name loosestrife is believed to refer to plant's ability to 'quieten savage beasts' - to repel flies and gnats away from the animals which wallowed in loosestrife. Apparently the scent of the plant is obnoxious for these insects. In the past dry plants were also burnt in houses where gnats and flies would be an embarrassment.

Anyway, even though lythrum salicaria is in some countries invasive its close relative lythrum virgatum is an endangered species. I saw it growing wild only once in one location, nowhere else - in the picture.
Loose yourself to strife12.08.2019
Loosestrife is so easy to grow, tough, and reliable that it is no wonder that it has the attention of growers and breeders of garden plants. New hybrids and varieties are bred for better flower colour, improved habit, and overall garden performance. One of the best is undoubtedly Robin. It is compact, dense, and very floriferous.
Loose yourself to strife12.08.2019
Loose yourself to strife12.08.2019
The same flower colour but atop taller stems offers it brother Robert.
Loose yourself to strife12.08.2019
Lady Sackville is very beautiful, too. It has a nice habit and tall, thin stems which move with the slightest breeze.
Loose yourself to strife12.08.2019
purple loosestrife12.08.2019
And the last boy is truly unique - pale pink Blush.

Which one will be your favourite?
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
When the sky turns dark and the clouds are so heavy we can't see a single sunray the gardens turns sad. We all know that we need rain, a lot of rain, and it is always a sight for sore eyes and a comforting feeling for all greenfingered beings watching it falling down onto thirsty plants and soaking into the ground. Though not every time the sky is overcast the rain comes. Those are the days when you begin to appreciate plants whose flowers are like miniature suns shining through this melancholic period before the real sun comes out again.

And not all of them have to be flowering plants, some gold-leaved shrubs can easily do the same trick. Let's have a look at a few tips for those which can bring back smiles to your overcast foreheads :-)
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
GALLO PEACH blanket flower
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
Zagreb tickseed
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
Cyni broom
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
Big Kahuna coneflower
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
MESA™ Yellow blanket flower
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
broom
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
Vossii golden rain
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
Stahlenkrone Aaron's rod
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
Mango Popsicle™ torch lily
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
Golden Sunshine Japanese fantail willow
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
Orange Dream Japanese maple
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
Paul's Best Yellow montbretia
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
And the best for last - before I photographed everything the sun came out :-) For a little while only, yet long enough to let me make a nice photo of this superb Gemo St.John's wort that flowers all July and August.
When the sun plays hide&seek28.07.2019
That's all for today, see you soon!
How's this possible??23.07.2019
Senovážné Square, České Budějovice, July 20, 2019. Remember this date well - the council apparently decided to honour 50th anniversary of the landing on the Moon in a very unique way - making their flower beds look just like the Moon fields. Have they succeeded?! Amazing work, what would you say?
How's this possible??23.07.2019
New flowers20.07.2019
Also in summer we keep on stuffing our garden centre with new plants every week. Now they are usually perennials in DeLuxe size and quality, and some new shrubs or tree if we sold them out and they become available again at the grower. This week we have had an amazing delivery of new perennials including more than 30% of novelties which will soon be displayed in the NEWS section. Are you looking forward to them? I bet you must be :-)
New flowers20.07.2019
We keep on bringing in salvias, they are simply a must when it comes to all-summer-long flowering. On the left you can see deep purple blue Caradonna, and on the right is a unique mix of sand and clay colour on a Caradonna yarrow. At the front you can se a little bit of lavenders - we have an exciting new variety for you, and silvery blue foliage of Blue Lagoon bog rosemary.
New flowers20.07.2019
And what is inevitable in every week's delivery are coneflowers. I get (female) customers complaining our our growing assortment of coneflowers saying that it is my fault that they need all of them, and that it is costing them money keeping up with the novelties ... Well, am I really the one to blame? ;-) This time we have three new varieties - deep orange SOMBRERO™ Adobe Orange (at the back), pink and green Green Twister, and in the middle row is a screaming red SUNSEEKERS™ In Tans Red.
New flowers20.07.2019
And when we display them at the front of our garden centre they look like that ...
New flowers20.07.2019
Would you like some of them? Well, come and get it! :-) See you soon ...
Feeding or feasting?15.07.2019
Do you know bee hawk moth? Here they are sometimes mistaken for hummingbirds, or better they are called hummingbird hawk moth. This one is special - it has greenish body and rich mahogany red band on the back. The speed of its wings seems like competing a smoothie maker ...
Flowers all over08.07.2019
That's right - there are flowers all over the garden. Did you know that one of our three specializations are plant blooming in summer? So that you can enjoy another storm of colours and flowers shapes once the spring bulbs and shrubs have finished. We have flowers for the whole summer and also autumn!

Late June and early July is always the time for tulip trees. This one is rather narrow and columnar - Fastigiatum. Its flowers do look like tulips and also have a faint fragrance.
Flowers all over08.07.2019
Veronicas are great perennials whose various species and varieties bloom in spring or summer. Eveline starts in mid June and contunues for about 6 weeks.
Flowers all over08.07.2019
Ulster Blue Dwarf is deep blue and dwarf.
Flowers all over08.07.2019
Also dwarf is Bubblegum Candy.
Flowers all over08.07.2019
Deeper pink, taller yet very compact and incredibly free flowering until autumn is my favourite First Love®.
Flowers all over08.07.2019
Bottle Rocket leopard plant loves moist or even wet soil and does well also in partial shade.
Flowers all over08.07.2019
And closely related ligularia przewalski likes the same conditions but is much taller.
Flowers all over08.07.2019
And obviously we cannot miss lavenders. This one is called Essence Purple.
Flowers all over08.07.2019
Flowers all over08.07.2019
Talking of lavenders, I often hear people say 'I would like something blue/purple in my garden, for example lavenders ...'. If you don't mind me saying lavenders are violet, not purple or blue. If you want a blue flower look at this Porcelain Blue corydalis, this one is blue.
Flowers all over08.07.2019
And finally, to give you something to look forward to, I have a picture if these gorgeous Cherokee Sunset rudbeckias. They will be available very soon. When? Perhaps in a week, or maybe in a couple days, blimey, and what if tonight?? :-)
Flowers all over08.07.2019
And if you have never been to our garden centre here are a few pictures showing the beautiful flowers we sell :-)
Flowers all over08.07.2019
We go to extremes when it comes to care of our perennials. We spend a lot of time making them as healthy, bushy, and beautiful, preferably in 2liter or larger pots that will secure a good root system that will guarantee the best chances to establish soon in your garden.
Flowers all over08.07.2019
Salvias are in fashion. Again? No, always! They definitely belong to the most demanded species which is why we reserved them a spot of honour at the entrance. We have every colour available - deep violet blue, violet, pink, and also white - dwarf and medium tall.
Flowers all over08.07.2019
At this time of summer there are plenty of achilleas and coneflowers begin to open their multicoloured heads. What a show!
Flowers all over08.07.2019
Blanket flowers, gauras, phlox etc. etc. Have I forgot something? Definitely, so you'd better come to see for yourself, we are looking forwrd to seeing you here :-)
Flowers all over08.07.2019
Blanket flowers
Flowers all over08.07.2019
Hardy fuchsias
Flowers all over08.07.2019
So see you soon!
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
Late June and early July is always the time for flowering catalpas and chitalpas. If I knew dendrology as a young boy as I do now I would most certainly connect their image to the school certificate at the end of a term.
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
Catalpa is called Indian bean tree because it comes from North America which is why it withstands harsh frost, and late in the season it makes long seed pods similar to those that hold beans.
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
The flowers are beautiful. They are composed in large, erect racemes. Their main colour white and each variety has a slightly different colour in the throat. This is the species.
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
Purpurea variety has deep burgundy red new leaves and the flowers have more prominent red veins.
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
Aurea bears lime green foliage and the flowers are only a little lighter in colour.
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
And it's also the foliage why we want catalpas in our gardens. The leaves are very large, heart-shaped, and offer three colours. The species produces medium green leaves and vertically oval canopy.
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
Aurea variety has bright lime green to chartreuse leaves and wide, dome-shaped canopy.
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
New leaves of Purpurea are deep burgundy red.
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
Their size is enormous.
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
Chitalpa is an interspecific cross between chilopsis and catalpa. It boasts beautiful, light pink flowers and exotic, narrow leaves.
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
It blooms profusely from late June until late August.
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
Flowers and leaves are not the only features catalpas are renowned for. Older plants, if grown as a shrub, form a massive framework of bottom branches, an ideal climbing attraction for kids :-)
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
Summer Bells® Chitalpa
Catalpas and chitalpas are blooming04.07.2019
I like the area under the canopies of multistemmed trees. Even though I struggle with space in my garden and tend to fill every gap I keep this half empty to enjoy the free space.
Works of art16.06.2019
I bet you must be wondering why I am showing a copy of a beautiful and famous painting on a horticultural website. Well, it's because it shows beauty, and plants deserve the same attention like models. Not a long time ago I got a book of the best portraits of the past two centuries for my niece who studies an art school. I chose it because it had a portrait of Madame X by John Singer Sargent on the cover, one of my most favourite. I remember someone ever said that the way Sargent paints arms is like angels singing ... and he was right.

Do you know the story of the painting? One of the most provocative at its time, it was finished in 1884 in France. The model was an American expat Madame Virginie Gautreau who married a successful banker in Paris. She kept on rejecting Sargent's proposals to sit for him as a model, and the painter - in his twenties - kept on begging her for two long years until he wore her off and she eventually agreed. Sargent, eager to make a painting of his lifetime devoted numerous hours to correcting sketches and deciding for the best position. Finally they both agreed that she would be standing up, looking left with her head looking aside, in her black iconic dress where originally the right strap dangled daringly off her shoulder. SCANDALOUS! All Paris was full of disgust and rejection of such a painting which made Sargent correct the painting moving the strap back on her shoulder. It did not help much so in the end he had to flee to America. Still, the painting is now considered not only his best but also one of the best ever portraits in history.

The beauty, charisma, and energy (nowadays we would probably say sex-appeal) was something that only a true artist could transform onto the canvas. It is not about a photographic perfection. It's the feeling you get from it. Looking at the painting you can sense it. Quite a few times several famous women tried to imitate the painting posing for a camera, including Madonna (of course!) and even Nicole Kidman. Unfortunately none of them seemed to share the same charisma and inner beauty that could be projected into the atmosphere and make you beg for it.

When I am out in the garden with my camera I look at the plants the same way. I do not look for a perfect shot detailing every petal of leaflet. I try to capture the best moment and the most appealing angle and light that would show the plant the way I see it and sense it. And believe me - many times I DO beg - for better light, less water, less shadows etc. Why bother? Because all plants are works of art and they deserve to be portrayed. Now sit back, relax, and see for yourself.
Works of art16.06.2019
Caradonna sage
Works of art16.06.2019
Brilliant poppy
Works of art16.06.2019
bearskin fescue
Works of art16.06.2019
Anthony Waterer rhododendron
Works of art16.06.2019
grape hyacinth
Works of art16.06.2019
Lavender Twist weeping redbud
Works of art16.06.2019
Koehnei dwarf red buckeye
Works of art16.06.2019
beachhead iris
Works of art16.06.2019
Innocent Glance clematis
Works of art16.06.2019
Larkspur
Works of art16.06.2019
Mango Storm flowering quince
Works of art16.06.2019
WINKY columbine

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