Blog You've Got Mail (Order) - the Cottage Garden

You've Got Mail (Order) - the Cottage Garden

Sandra Ross is going postal…in a good way!

If you find yourself checking the mailbox several times a day for the latest Spring plant catalogues, chances are you’ve got mail-order fever. Here are some of Sandra’s favourite catalogue listings for this season.

Gone postal. Sandra's mail-order catalogue collection. 

The hellebore specialists

I just adore hellebores. In my garden the first one opened yesterday ... Mrs Betty Ranicar, a classic double white that I moved last winter to my new front garden, so I’m keen to get more.



The stunning winter rose, the Hellebore. Photo - Luisa Brimble  


When Post Office Farm’s Mail Order Catalogue arrived, I was captivated by a rare double primrose yellow hellebore in. Maybe another primrose variety, single with gold centre.... delicious! Located in Woodend, Victoria Post Office Farm sends plants all over Australia except WA, by Australia Post, up until October. If you’re lucky enough to be in Victoria, they’re also open every Sunday over winter and spring. I’m drooling so must send away for them right now.

Post Office Farm Nursery
934 Ashbourne Rd, Woodend, Victoria
Ph (03) 54273227.

Irises and Daylilies

If you love irises, and who doesn’t, then the Rainbow Ridge Nursery catalogue is definitely worth perusing. 


Who doesn't love Iris?

There are the usual suspects, such as Tall Bearded Iris, plus many other delights that make it hard to resist. I’ve treated myself to Return to Camelot, an apricot that will be just perfect with Just Joey rose; both of them a divine combination of peachy hues. Indulgence doesn’t stop there; I’ve been completely mesmerized by their collection of Californian iris, in particular one called Magic Falls, a sensational soft lemon with lilac splotches and veining. This particular iris flowers in spring with spikes from 20 to 45cms, and grows beautifully in light shade.

Rainbow Ridge Nursery

Spring bulbs galore

For those lucky enough to be able to grow peonies, I recommend checking out Van Dieman Quality Bulbs. And if you can’t, then check them out anyway for their selection of gorgeous lilies! Developed in the US by Dr Robert Griesbach, and named for his granddaughters, the Pearl Collection of Asiatic lilies are long and prolific flowerers. 


Oh, to be lucky enough to grow Peonies.... 


I planted Pearl Jessica at Garden Clinic HQ, a beautiful pink with chocolate freckles with 12 flowers to each stem! These new age lilies are tough and flower mid-summer. I see they now have Pearl Jennifer, which is equally strong, in a vibrant yellow, and Pearl Justine with re-curved flowers in a rockmelon shade, almost spot free, which is unusual for these types of Lilies. In creating these new lilies, breeders have taken old favourite heritage varieties and made them better, stronger and more disease resistant. They just get better each year.

Van Diemen Quality Bulbs

Irresistible and in short supply (says the online Tesselaar catalogue) as I reach for my iPad ... I hope I haven’t missed out on Sonatini Alaska, a pure white double dwarf hippeastrum with green centre that grows 30 – 45cms. Each bulb will produce 3 stems and each stem will carry 4 or 5 flowers, 6-12cms across! Great for the garden or for pots that can be brought inside for display. I’m in heaven!


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