• Woo Hoo!!! Half a million visits

    Bit of a milestone - half a million visits to Frary's Fresh Flowers - Thank you, thank you and once again
    I thank you!

    And you thank you once again - let me buy each and every one of you some orchids - a fine white spray of orchids.
    Of course I couldn't get them through cutoms from Singapore so you'll just have to make do with this picture.
    Apologies for the ogre in the background. Some people will do anything to ruin a photo.


  • Tipperty in November

    tipperty Nov 14 001
    Two mild winters and a damp summer has left the front garden looking fine. And this autumn has also been mild - only the third day of frost expected today 8th Dec.
    All this has left the front garden looking lusher and interesting.
    It is developing into my favorite part of the garden.

    Looking particularly lush are the tree heathers Erica arborea at the top f the bank. The largest ones are now well over two feet tall. it will take a wee while to get up to the twenty foot monsters we saw in La Gomera this year but we are getting there.
    tipperty Nov 14 005
    tipperty Nov 14 002

    Also doing well are the roses, the ferns and the ivy. The standard roses have been moved out if their tubs and are bedding in but they already look like they are doing better in the front in the ground than they were in the tubs - I am not good at feeding plants in tubs so that is probably the problem they were having in the containers.

    tipperty Nov 14 019tipperty Nov 14 009
    The Ivy is now starting to creep up the rowan arch at the top of the path. It'll take a year or two more for them to meet in the middle but it looks like it is totally achievable. Onwards and upwards.

  • Singapore Botanical Gardens

    Clock - Singapore Botanical Gardens

    "The results of TripAdvisor's 2014 Traveller's Choice Awards is out, and the Singapore Botanic Gardens is once again Asia's best park.
    The park, which hopes to register as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is joined by Japan's Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park (2nd) and Hong Kong's Nan Lian Garden (3rd). Gardens by the Bay's Cloud Forest Dome is also in the list at no. 25.
    The world's top three best parks according to TripAdvisor are Vancouver's Stanley Park, Colorado's Garden of the Gods and Central Park in New York City."

    I have been to two of the best 4 parks in the world the Botanical Gardens and Central Park and we are going to Vancouver in 6 weeks time - close to Stanley Park - so will have visited 3 out of 4 parks.
    I guess I need to plan a visit to Colorado's Garden of the Gods next year or so.

    Anyhow above is the clock in Singapore Botanical Gardens and it has the names of 4 cities on it. Singpaore, Tokyo, London and Vancouver. After next month I'll have been to all 4 - woo hoo!!
    I don't know why it has those particular cities - probably related to Botanical Gardens but will try to find out. I love a wee mystery.

    Update - here is the reply I received from the excellent people at the Singapore Botanical Gardens:

    Dear Mr Frary

    Thank you for your patience.




    We have gathered information that the countries reflected on the clock tower was the preference of the donor herself, the late Lady Yuen Peng McNiece. The special connection to the Singapore Botanic Gardens are the Sealing Wax Palm trees sculptures that are part of the clock tower which is the logo of our Gardens.

    Hope this clarifies your query.

    Best regards
    Rahimah Yusof
    Visitor Services
    Singapore Botanic Gardens

  • SIngapore rip off my garden.... again!!!


    So the Singapore botanical gardens do it again - like Balmoral Castle and Castle Fraser - they all have secret spies which come rounddto Tipperty and see what I have in the garden then go back home and put it in their garden -well they go back in time and put it in their garden ten years before it goes into mine - reverse trendiness. I'm sure that is the explanantion and not that I go and see their gardens - then come back and try it in ours in a much smaller and cheaper scale. I thiunk that spy satellites, monitoring of the blog and time travel is a much more likely explanation.
    So what have Singapore ripped off this time?
    Cold greenhouse - check - see theirs above - similar to our 6' by 8' doncha think?
    And smack in the middle of the cold greenhouse they have a scrawny Gunnera - see below - among the orchids, begonias, ferns and pelargoniums.
    Well we too have a scrawny Gunnera among our ferns and orchids, begonias and pelargoniums (though ours are all outside and the last towo are in baskets that go in over winter). A few minor differences but you must admit that it looks like they are reading my mind. Perhaps I should wear a silver foil hat while I tinker about in the garden.

    As you can see this is almost a direct rip off of my damp corner in the front garden in Tipperty - well there is a Gunnera in there and it's really green so almost the same... yeah right. I hadn't realised that I had blogged quite so much about Gunnera - this is the 6th post to mention them sice I put in our end of season bargain in November 2012. That's two mild winters that it has survived. Another one coming

    28 July 2014 053

    Each autumn the plant collapses and that glistening heart spends the cold months surrounded by the cold dead leaves... definitely sounding a bit Goth there. This year is no different. In the two weeks I was back home the single frost devastated the Gunnera and started it on it's winter sleep hopefully to reawaken bigger and even stronger in spring. I don't think it will ever get to the size of the ones in Dundee that originally inspired the purchase but you never know. This time next decade we could be sheltering under its leaves or even building our house out of the leaves if the current descent into economic chaos continues - now there's a cheery thought to end the blog on.
    tipperty Nov 14 014

  • All Quiet on the Eastern Front


    Been a bit quiet recently - I had to focus on finishing and publishing on Nindle my novel - Her Majesty of Mumu.


    So while I've been doing this I couldn't justify spending much time on the blog - sorry about that. especially as there has been so much going on in the garden - or at least in the potting shed (which consists of an old lawn chaiir and glass topped table on the patio) - namely a thousand and 1 daffodils to pot - almost literally 1001.

    I read a great book about daffodils (as blogged abouthttp://frarys-fresh-flowers.blog.co.uk/2014/10/22/daffodils-in-october-19597831/ ) so had to buy a load of daffodils - which I did - including from specialist sellers such as two lots of orders from

    http://qualitydaffodils.com/login - these were mainly small minatures - so called rockery daffs - as I would like to try some breeding and I think a pink minature woould be a good flower to aim for.

    Of course there were also orders from Thompson and Morgan and Van Meuwen (same compnay) and from JH parkers.

    and some autumn flowering daffodils from:  www.facebook.com/RinghaddyDaffs
    > www.ringhaddy-daffodils.com
    > - I was a bit late for these so they won't be sent till next year.

    So I had a ton of daffodils to plant when I got back hoome in November.
    And some are already growing great guns - look at these minature beauties from Quality Daffodils -henriquesii - which are 13-y-y specis daffodils -http://qualitydaffodils.com/nj-var-henriquesii-13y-y-e1030cm-agm-species-per-pack-of-5?filter_name=henriquesii

    At 90p each these are much more expensive than I am used to buying - normally I go for 20 for 2 - in the sale (as I did again this year - end of season fromn Happy plant - around a dozen packs in total) but last year I bougfht some far too late and none of them ever showed. I thought that I ought to splash a little bit of cash if I want to make this my life's work (- or what little remains of it anyhow).
    But quality has out - literally!.
    tipperty Nov 14 024tipperty Nov 14 023

    Out in the garden there are green daffodil shoots showing through the grass because it has been such a mild november in Tipperty and even the rest of the North east Scotland while the ones int he large pots from last year are well on their way to an early showing of daffs. Wiull they survive the mild winter which my Rowans say are coming? We will see, we will see.

    tipperty Nov 14 040

  • Heather names


    Well I had to buy these... the names, the names.

    Alicia is our newest Grandchild - just over a month old now. I suddenly had an excuse to buy these - I'd spotted Alicia before but the name had never had a connection before. So I got three of each. When you can afford it you need to buy plants in odd number sets.
    1 plant is a specimen plant - okay if it is going to be a huge special plant.
    2 plants ... with the space between - turns into a line which isn't like a clump of colour. Straight lines never seem to work well in an actual garden because plants are floppy and never quite fit the plan, except in the vegetable garden. Then lines look better because you have go in a hoe.
    3 - yep forms a clump, you can make loads of different sort of triangles though I guess most people - me included - go for the equilateral to get even spaces between them. Even if you have to squint it a bit the middle part will fill in nicely.
    4 - for some reason putting 4 plants in doesn't look right - the centre doesn't fill in nicely. I tend to go for a diamond/rhombus shape if I have 4 - i.e. an equilateral triangle with one stuck on one of the sides. That can work.
    5 - now you are really starting to get into variations now - star, cross, pentagon.


    Over and above - you've got more money than I have - apart from bedding flats and plug plants I rarely if ever have 5 or more plants of one variety. They are simply too expensive except for the rich and TV programs. The bedders go into the whiskey barrels or the hanging baskets(out of the reach of the rabbits usually) where we can see them for the one season they live. The plug plants now go into 3" pots to start with. For the first year or so I put the plug straight into the garden (into the outside if they were "rabbit-resistant" or into the stalag if they are rabbit salad.) They rarely survived more than a season or a few weeks - the weeds/mice/slugs and snails got to them. Now all plugs go into cheap 3" pots for a few weeks if not a full year to bulk up and get ready for the vigour of Tipperty.

    So because I had these Alicias I had to add a few more to make up the 10 (to get a slight saving on the per plant price - I'm a sucker for that sales ploy. Mentally I know it's marketing but my gut always goes with 'it's a bargain!'). Once the will is broken - i.e. I know that I will buy some plants then I get what I want to buy - all or nothing - I ended up with thirty - 10*3's - all thing sin moderation... including moderation.

    Jacqueline above - Daughter and sister, and Molly (well close) below - niece.
    Now I only need about a dozen more exotic names and I'll have the inner circle planted up - and an excuse to buy loads more heathers or roses or daffodils or whatever.


  • Let's finish off the Fungi

    To finish the photos of our fungal foray to the slopes of Bennachie (shown above) we have the photos - and only the photos - apart from this little bit.

    And this bit - two photos of shaggy inkcaps bracket the photos (some of which are of bracket fungi) -
    This is a mushroom we have eaten (20 years ago when we picked them in Seaton, Aberdeen) but I was singularly unimpressed so didn't bother again. Beside the shaggy inkcap autodigests itself when it is picked - you need to pick and cook within 4 to 6 houtrs our you just end up with a bowl of schmoo - not too appetising.

    Anyhow - regarding fungi in 2014... That's all folks.









  • Daffodils - in October!!!!

    B257 15 Bulbocodium Conspicuous Delivery within 28 days 1 4.99 4.99
    B282 15 Narcissi White Marvel Delivery within 28 days 1 5.99 5.99
    B252 75 Collection - Narcissi cyclamineus 1 19.95 19.95
    B271 90 Jonquilla Narcissi Collection s 1 19.94 19.94
    F514 Apple James Grieves Delivery October/November 1 12.99 12.99
    F713 Apple Russet Delivery October/November 1 12.99 12.99
    F470 Peach Pigmy Bonanza Delivery October/November 1 19.99 19.99
    F544 Apricot 'Large Early' Delivery October/November 1 12.99 12.99
    B990 50 Free Iris reticulata Mixed Delivery within 28 days 1 FREE FREE
    B005 50 Free Trumpet Daffodils Mixed Delivery within 28 days 1 FREE FREE

    I sahouldn't have done it - I know I shouldn't have done it - but... well... it mid rotation (21/2 weeks in, 2 1/2 weeks left) so that is always a slow tijme - up caught up - up to speed and not the pressure to cram all those other things into the few remaining days as the end time is so distant - still another 3 weeks to UK.

    And I just finished reading a book about daffodils on my Kindle...

    Daffodil: The remarkable story of the world's most popular spring Flower [Kindle Edition]
    Noel Kingsbury (Author), Jo Whitworth (Photographer)
    4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (4 customer reviews)


    It was a good book - only downside was the pictures were black and white on my paper white Kindle.

    Of course as soon as I read I was imagining Tipperty with yet more dozens and dozens of daffodils in the spring (I never knew that there were Autumn flowering daffodils) of types we don't have but - now - thanks to the wonders of the internet - will have ready to plant when I get home.

    I rounded out the order with more apple trees as we had a good crop this year, a very hardy apricot tree - in my dreams I think - and a miniature peach tree. The peach is going to go in the greenhouse for a few years - or maybe up against the wall - - they only grow 6 foot tall so I can put against the back - in the corner and use up that space which is just too far to reach to. Or maybe I should get a greenhouse just for the peach trees. Now that would be some expensive fruit - we have to get a few thousand apricots off the tree to make it worth while.
    Still - at least the apples might thrive in the coming mild winter.

  • Winter Prediction

    Well our Rowans have spoken yet again - our mountain ash - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rowan - Sorbus aucuparia - and they predict a very mild winter - almost no berries on the trees at all - and it hasn't been a particularly windy summer (though I've not been there for most of it as susual) so itisn't plant damage.

    So far they havce been remarkably accurate over the last 5 years so I'm getting in extra supplies of suntan lotion and cancelling the winter refuel of coal, wood and oil - we won't need it - our trees have spoken.

  • Porcini power


    During our fungal foray to Bennachie we came across a few of these lovely, fleshy toadstools. They really look like something you could take a hard bite out of and chew on the flesh - almost meat like. One or two of them actually looked like chocolate covered ice-cream balls - with frost on the cracked chocolate - truly scrumptious. These looked especially tempting... if I didn't know that the white "frost" on the outside is actually a mould Hypomyces chrysospermus, known as the bolete eater, and that the 'cracked chocolate' is where something (probably an insect or a banana slug - now there would be a nice deseert - or a small mammal - looks like slug damage) has chomped on the cap.


    These mushrooms are as edible as they look - they are the famous Porcini aka Boletus edulis (often found in association with the fly agaric (see the last post)). Italian chef and restaurateur Antonio Carluccio has described it as representing "the wild mushroom par excellence", and hails it as the most rewarding of all fungi in the kitchen for its taste and versatility. Next year I think we may just take one or two and give it a tentative tase (or even try to get it established in Tipperty).

    If you want to know more then the Wikipedia article is, as ever, a good place to start.



Email subscription

You can receive the posts of this blog by email.

RSS Feed
RSS 1.0
RSS 2.0


The content of this website belongs to a private person, blog.co.uk is not responsible for the content of this website.