Preparing for next year

As it is now the time to sow Foxgloves we have taken this opportunity to remove some of the seed-heads from the following plants:


Aquilegias (to reduce their self-seeding capability) 
Dame's violet (to sort the mixed seeds out into purple and white blooms)
Delphiniums 
Foxgloves (to control where we position them in the bed)


Unknown to us for two years until they flowered, we had a mixed packet of Dame's violet seeds (RHS Seed List).  When they flowered we wanted to distinguish the purples from the whites for planting at the back of a future south-facing border.  I am also quite keen on attempting to plant a border containing only white flowers.  

To facilitate this we labelled the stems of all the white blooms (picture above left) with a Dymo labelling machine.  We have found that this is a really useful gardening tool.  The sticky labels have proven to be weatherproof and stay in place despite everything that is thrown at the garden.  We have carried out a similar exercise with white foxglove spikes. 

The seed heads appear on the Dame's violet once the flowers have dropped (picture above right).  If left they turn brown, split and throw seeds everywhere.  As this is a very tall plant (have reached a height of 2 meters) we need to control where they are positioned.  
Neat trays of seed-heads lined up and air drying 
Various seed-heads currently being dried in carefully labelled trays in the potting shed.  I am going to add some white paper beneath the seed-heads to aid their identification. 

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