Little Boots has a little wooden playhouse in the garden. Last year, near to this, I made a small wooden deck. Around this was planted some leafy plants, which the perisher soon christened the Jungle Area. It’s only small, but has a lot packed it. Initially it was planted with 3 bananas. The biggest – definitely Musa basjoo. The other pair were Musas, but I’m not sure which. They were cheap buys at the end of the season and probably planted out too late, so that even though well protected they didn’t make it through the winter. Other planting was very much a mish-mash. Some home grown cannas, end of season reduced Melianthus and Miscanthus, some Crocosmia “Lucifer” that had never done very well where it was first planted, all bulked out with Alchemilla mollis.

Well, as I’ve intimated, only one of the bananas made it. The cannas, even though lifted and stored under the greenhouse bench, were killed by the cold winter we had. And even though the Melianthus came through, it’s sulked this year.

However there have been successes. The Lucifer has flowered like never before, two large blue alliums appeared as if from nowhere (they must have been a forgotten purchase from our local nursery), self-seeded Verbena bonariensis has dotted up throughout, although it has only just started to flower. This season’s additions were headed by Ensete ventricosa (going batty), along with a Hedichium, Canna, Incarvillea (already looking “toes up”), Perovskia “Blue Spire” (which doesn’t really fit and will probably get moved or used as a stock plant for cuttings).

When we went to Wizzles recently, I wanted to get a couple more Musas from the Plant Centre, but Little Boots was quite adamant that we shouldn’t buy anymore and demanded we buy something else. “OK,” I eventually relented, “but what other plants are there here that are jungly?”

Without further prompting LB raced around and chose Unula magnifica, a Bergenia and Stachys monieri – all leafy things and so, good choices, but I have reservations.

However, it did occur to me that this may well be how Christopher Lloyd started – in which case I’ll let the munchkin get on with it.

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