The vaguely green-fingered thoughts of a rambling rose.

Feeling Hot Hot Hot!

Ah June. So different from the June in 2007 with the floods, or indeed last year! We had a drop or three of rain last night, but not nearly as much as we need. I had to empty one of the water butts this week as it had sprung a leak. Not a leak exactly, but the tap was coming undone, and the water was leaking out of the seal. Fortunately it happened while I was using it, so nothing was wasted. I filled up from both the tap, and by dunking a watering can into the water from the top. Once the vegetables were given a good soaking, The Man that Can tightened up the tap for me in preparation for the heavy rain that had been forecast overnight. It didn't materialise. Instead we had a little shower, which has barely covered the bottom of the butt.

Also in preparation for the rain, I applied a little weed-n-feed to the lawn, but in the absence of sufficient wet stuff or the possibility of any in the near future, we've had to resort to a good soaking with the hose - while we still can! I'm expecting the bans to be announced any day now.

Water is so very important to the gardener. Not only are my hanging baskets and containers needing to be watered every day, but the greenhouse needs damping down a couple of times per day to help cool it down a little and create humidity. Yesterday the thermometer in the greenhouse was in the 40's C despite both window and door fully open.

Of course we do need the sunshine to help the flowers and indeed crops. This has been the average temperature this week (30 odd degrees C) on my patio, home to many of my containers, and myself of course on the sunlounger reading...erm I mean wandering around the garden weeding, deadheading and checking for pests...ahem.

In the greenhouse, I have begun to harvest the pea shoots. They're just right to pop into you mouth while you're busy taking cuttings of hebe. I have a couple of really nice hebe's in the island bed that I want to propagate. All I did was pull off some sideshoots with a little 'heel' of bark, remove the lower leaves and pop around the edge of a pot containing some compost mixed in equal proportions with pearlite. Watered well and arranged them on a low shelf in the greenhouse. Not much will happen this year, but by next year, I hope that most of them will have created their own root system and be ready to pot up and grow on.

Talking of hebe's I bought  a new one this week, and it's begun to show off it's beautiful blue and white flowers which will be a magnet to bees and butterflies.

I also bought a Heuchera with dark purple leaves and yet more scented lillies that were irresistible, a new variety, bright pink which I'll share with you when in bloom . Oh yes, and a lovely fern with pinky bronze foliage when young.

Back in the greenhouse, more cuttings are prepared. This time a hardy fuschia, another variety of hebe, lavender and dianthus.

Tiny cucumbers are beginning to form behind the flowers...

...and the courgettes have begun to flower

Around the plot, Toad and the Bumblebee have been helping to harvest the strawberries. They've spotted the first raspberries and some blackcurrants, although not yet ripe.

The potatoes and tomatoes are beginning to flower, and something is stirring deep within the corn plants

We've begun harvesting the odd radish.

As for flowers, where to begin? As the vibrant red lillies begin to fade, the Sweet Peas begin to bloom. The trick with these fragrant lovelies is to keep picking them to prevent the pods from forming. As soon as they seed, their job as far as the plant is concerned is done. Fool it into flowering over a longer period by picking posies for the home. Keep them well watered to prevent mildew, and a weekly feed will pay off.

The wall baskets are doing well, awkward to water, but worth it for the colourful blooms of pelargoniums, petunias and lobelia. Regular deadheading to remove spent blooms will extend the display.

As promised, the fat buds of the fuschias in my hanging baskets have burst, revealing their contrasting inner petals. I used to think they looked like pretty little fairy dancers when I was small. The Man that Can thinks they look like space ships.

Before I wind up this post, there's just time to show off the Eryngium. I've been trying all week to get a good shot that shows how blue it is, and finally I have it.

1 comment:

  1. Hayley you have worked so hard in your garden and greenhouse and its all paying dividends now and I know you will really enjoy everything you have grown. Well done :o)
    Colly xxxx