31 August 2017


Gatehouse Garden Foxglove 
Digitalis purpurea 'Alba'
at least 7 feet.
This happy mother plant has produced
lots of fresh seeds that are now
processed for the seed rack.
Anno thirty-one August 2017
A favorite specimen from Shaw Island, WA.

The seeds of this offering were collected from the robust, large-leaved plant growing unstaked on the north side of the Gatehouse after ripening in the long dry summer of 2017. For this gardener, it is a cherished white bloom, without spots, that climbed at least seven feet towards the sky. No other foxglove was blooming in the garden for the bees to cross-pollinate so I'm hoping the majority of seeds will yield white flowers. In any case, the color of the future bloom can be determined by the color on the lower leaf-stalk in the first year of this biennial and rogued out if it is not to your liking.
The culture of the 'alba' seeds will be the same as for Carol's Digitalis purpurea also listed for viewing  here.
Ideal for: cottage gardens, cut flower garden, woodland garden.
Ease of Sowing: EASY for all.
Keep the soil damp until germination takes place. Thin to 6". Transplant to 24" apart into flowering site in autumn for flowering the following year. They grow in most soils and prefer part shade. 
Harvesting flowers: Pick the top king flower out and you will promote the production of more side flowers, which is how it is with this one lush, "tall drink of water" at the Gatehouse. 
      "I love white foxgloves, lighting up the garden like church candelabras, carrying the eye deep into dim recesses, self-sown, in drifts or singly. Each year I fret when they are in flower––should I be planting more in strategic places for next year? Sometimes we get round to it, but more often than not, left to themselves, they make a better job than we might have done. " 
Chatto, Beth, and Christopher Lloyd. Dear Friend & Gardener, Letters on Life and Gardening. London. Frances Lincoln Ltd. 1998. A gift book brought home to Shaw Island from friend Angel, inscribed by both authors. 12 September 2001. Thank you.
Gatehouse Garden Foxglove 'Alba' 
Seeds for sale while they last, 
at the Gatehouse shed,
Squaw Bay Road, Shaw Island, WA.

12 August 2017

🌿 Great White Heads 🌿

"...in the midst of which Leaves, sometimes in the middle
of autumn, and sometimes sooner, there rises up a
great white Head of white hard Flowers closely thrust together,
sometimes they are of a Milk, or Cream, or yellowish
White color." 

The English Herbal by William Salmon, M.D., 1710

And Shaw Island cauliflower this day of 12 August 2017.