...in shades of blue, purple, and mauve.
Meet this week's stars--
Passion Flower: the loveliest. I consider this my favourite flower that isn't a rose.
Cupani's Original: the most fragrant. The heirloom sweet pea that started it all, circa 1696-99. The Sicilian monk Francesco Cupani found the plant, and sent seeds to England. Sweet pea hybridising became a mania in Victorian times. It's hard to believe such a powerful fragrance can come from such a tiny flower!
Foxglove: the deadliest. These self-sow all round my gardens. It's the source of digitalis.
Scabious: the humblest. In England, a common meadow weed with medicinal uses, but it has great value in the garden and works well potted up. Also known as the pincushion flower.
Rose of the Day
Charles de Mills. Another gallica rose.
This one dates from sometime in the 19th century, so not at all ancient. One account says it was bred at the famous Roseraie de l'Hay. The buds are so light in colour, so tightly closed, that the open rose's deep colour and the many petals come as a wonderful surprise. The bush sprawls all over the garden--despite being pruned back more than any other rose--and is completely covered with these exquisite flowers. Quite a sight! It's an own-root rose, so it suckers madly. Occasionally I plant a sucker in a garden where I need to fill in a big gap. But none of the kids can yet compare to the mother plant.
Also, no photograph can really do it justice.