The Garden in June 2017

May was a gloriously warm and sunny month here in Donegal. Unfortunately, June did not live up to expectations, and we endured rain, rain, and yet more rain…

However, the garden is thriving and there are lots of new blooms to share.


Pink Lavatera matches my garden chairs

I planted this Lavatera back in 2011, and she has provided delicious, pink blooms every summer. Sadly, she appears to be reaching the end of her life, with several branches decaying and breaking off.

I will not grow another Lavatera, but I am considering replacing her with a David Austin climbing rose. I have not yet decided on the best species.

This is “The Pilgrim” a yellow climber that lights up my rose bed.


The Pilgrim

You can see “The Pilgrim” to the rear here, among her friends – tall bronze Fennel, magenta Geranium psilostemon -which came from The Gardens of Glenveagh Castle, and Melissa (Lemon balm) which I used as a tonic when I had Shingles. I do not know the name of the white Rose at the front but she was smiling for my camera!


The Pilgrim and friends

Rosa glauca is sporting delicate pink flowers. I love her dark foliage. She came all the way from Colchester as a youngster, a present from a dear friend.


Rosa glauca

She has some hot pink Carnations as neighbours, together with pale pink Geraniums and purple Astrantia.


Carnations, Geranium and Astrantia

The vivid blue of Iris siberica lights up the pond area. She has friends in red – Mimulus and Astilbe.


Iris siberica, Mimulus and Astilbe 

Peeping out from behind are the long stems of Angels Fishing Rods, which are beginning to flower as I write.


Angels Fishing Rods (Dierama) with a Day lily to the front

Moving to the right are the tall yellow flowers of Ligularia next to purple Acanthus also known as Bears Breeches. Yellow and Purple are at opposite ends of the colour wheel, therefore complement each other beautifully.


Ligularia przewalskii


Acanthus spinosus

In a similar colour combination, my last yellow Aquilegia stands proudly next to a friendly dark leaved Heuchera. Don’t they look well together?


I am patiently waiting for my two pots of white Agapanthus to bloom. They travelled all the way back from a holiday in Madeira.



There are many other floral delights to come, but I shall save those for next month.

Have you a favourite climbing rose that you would recommend? I am looking for LOTS of scented blooms that will cover a fence and archway. “Bobby James” – a white, highly scented rambler, is a top contender but I am open to other suggestions…

Brigid P. Gallagher is a retired natural medicines therapist, passionate organic gardener and author of “Watching the Daisies- Life lessons on the Importance of Slow,” a holistic memoir dedicated to the art of mindfulness and healing from debilitating illness.



  1. I used to have vines and flowers climbing over our wall..they look beautiful…but i have to cut them down lately and settle for smaller plants for securitu reasons. Well in case you wanna know from where i am robbers used to get off the walls of some houses and rob it ..cases of robbery has increased around our neighborhood that’s why i set up a cctv then cut down all of my ahhhhh beautiful plants..

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  2. I love how you know the Latin names of your plants…it is impressive. I am less a gardener than one who appreciates lovely gardens. My daughter and son have become the real gardeners in the family, so I am fortunate to be able to enjoy the fruits of their labor. I do love a stroll through a beautiful garden on any given day, so thanks for the pix and the commentary. We, too, have been having a rainy summer here in NY, and now the humidity has set in as well. I spend much of my day indoors hiding from mosquitoes which seem to love my scent. My idea of paradise would be a beautiful garden without mosquitoes!

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    • Thank you Barbara. I do not always know all the full names but I checked them out on Google for this post. In Ireland we are eaten by an insect called a midge. They can be torture too. 😉


  3. Beautiful garden, Brigid. I have lots of fragrant climbing roses, but they were all planted by the woman who lived here before me. So, I have no idea what they are other than beautiful gifts. I know you’ll find the perfect rose. ❤

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  4. Wow – your garden is looking truly magical and I’m sure it’s a haven for bees with all those wonderful flowers… My mum was an avid gardener and it reminds me of her garden – an abundance of colours! Beautiful xx

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  5. Gorgeous garden! About the climbing roses… I love Cecile Brunners, a small light pink flower. And climbing Joseph’s Coat are beautiful, love the orange, red, and yellow colors.💜

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  6. Beautiful. I’ve stopped growing the big Lavateras now – they get better and better and then hit their peak and keel over way too soon. And they’re a sod to dig out! I now grow a patio variety – Barnsley Baby – in containers.I must admit that I’m not a stickler for the “colour wheel”. Everything goes in together. Which makes me appreciate much more the efforts of someone who has thought about colour combinations.

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  7. Your garden looks glorious Brigid. I love the aquilegia and heuchera combination. I probably wouldn’t be without Rosa Gertrude Jekyll. It’s a lovely pink rose that seems to flower all summer. Can be grown as a shrub or a climber. All the best. Karen

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  8. Hello Brigid,
    What a delightful walk through your pretty garden, seeing all your special flowers. You have a great knowledge of their names for sure. I cannot help you with any advice about the roses. I love your pink garden setting too… making a special appearance…
    Hope the rain holds off for a while now.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Di. I added the full names this post for some of my new gardening enthusiasts. I had to check out a few on the Internet 😉 Thankfully we are getting some sunny days again with some wet ones in between. The flowers are happy.😊

      Liked by 1 person

      • You’re very welcome dear Brigid…
        Well, you’ll now know the ones you had to look up too. We are all learning together. And yes, I imagine the warmth, rain and sun alternating are creating some colourful beauty outside at your place…
        Enjoy, and wishing you a great week 🙋🏻💕

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  9. How glorious Brigid!! Love the lavatera– have never seen it before– but it looks so healthy and cheerful! And we have agapanthas in our yard too! They are all over the place in Southern California. Wish I could sit in one of your pink chairs with a book and soak it all in!! love this post! hugs friend!

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  10. Hi, I always like a gardener who likes Rosa glauca. It should be called a friendship rose because the seeds always grow and provide lots of small presents to give away. I have Bobby James in my garden and you can see it in my blog (suggest search will find it). It is a very strong grower so you will need plenty of space. Other favorites would be Rosa Alchemist and Rosa ‘Alister Stella Grey’ and Rosa ‘Crown Princess Margareta’


  11. A great garden round up!
    I didn’t know Lavatera only lasted a few years? Mine looks terrible and I have pruned it as I didn’t know how to revive it but perhaps, it has also come to the end of its life?
    What to replace it with??
    Lovely post Brigid and thanks again for linking up to #MyGloriousGardens.
    I will post a round up post next week. Xx


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