The vaguely green-fingered thoughts of a rambling rose.

Blooming Marvellous!

After a period of drought followed a period of cooler, wetter conditions in the garden, and after a few battered blooms have been trimmed back, the flowers are looking their best right now.

The Hemerocallis, or 'Daylilies' are coming into their own right now. Each bloom lasts only one day, hence the common name, but many buds are waiting for their moment on the same stem to prolong the interest.

The rain spoiled a number of petunias, but removing the untidy blooms by nipping the stem back to a healthy bud forces the plants to produce yet more flowers.

The Pelargoniums are a little more weather-resistant, and those tiny plug plants purchased in the Spring has brought some very pleasing varieties, both from the bush and trailing versions.

The baskets are practically heaving with their summer bedding plants.

And so to one of my favourite flowers of the season, the Fuschia. You may recall my taking some cuttings of young bedding varieties in the Spring. Being the same 'age' as their parents, they too are beginning to flower.

These are in a shadier spot in the greenhouse, as I still haven't got around to planting them out. But for now, lets have a look at those outside.

There are a few varieties of Hardy Fuschia dotted around the place too, some yet to flower, but this one just goes from strength to strength.

There is only one drawback to growing Fuschias, that they seem to be a magnet to wasps. Not enough to make me want to dig them up and resign them to the compost heap, but enough to warrant The Toad to back away in dread. I wondered whether they provide a little watering hole for them as they seem most attracted to them after watering, but more probably it's just the pollen they're after. This time of the year wasps are still feeding on aphids, and as there is still so much sweet natural food around for them, they pose less of a threat to us.

A surprising thing has happened in the garden. For the first time since moving here, the Clematis 'Rhapsody' has formed new flower buds. Perhaps it is making up for such a poor show in the Spring.

And now to another of my favourite Summer flowering plants. Lillies. As these began to open, so too did the heavens and our first Summer storms rolled in. I decided then to cut an armful for the house to be able to enjoy the heavy scent indoors, should the rain spoil the remainder.

The established Hebe's are in flower. This particular one had cuttings taken from it a few weeks back, as it's on the list of plants to move. The cuttings were taken in the event of it taking umbridge at being shifted from the island bed and giving up the ghost. A back-up plan if you like. It hasn't performed as well as previous years, and since there is an identical form in the same bed, it will be replaced by the one bought a few weeks ago, with blue flowers.

Escaping the unruly children's attention last week, this purple Allium globe is colouring up nicely and awaiting the moment when it will burst out into a firework display...apparently.

Penstemons are opening too. I hadn't realised just how dark these would be when I bought them, so I might just have to buy some more in a lighter shade to show them off a little better. They seem to be lost in the foliage right now unless viewed at a certain angle.

Before we move to the vegetables, there just time to take a peek at the first Potentilla bloom. Peering out from beneath the large leaves of the courgette plants, it seems very out of place. This shrub will hopefully fill out a little more and become more substantial in the coming years, as it's unlikely we shall use this bed for so many vegetables in the future.

In this modest raised bed built by The Man that Can back in the Spring with York Stone we discovered in the garden last year, lie courgettes, pumpkins, sweetcorn and french beans jostling for position with various annuals yet to flower. I cannot for the life of me remember what annuals we sowed apart from Cosmos, whose filigree foliage stands out amongst all the various leaf shapes.

I thought it might be an idea to show the difference between a male and female courgette flower. The male has quite a thin straight stem, and by contrast the female displays a swollen stem, which is the forming courgette.

The Sweetcorn is in full swing now. The chickens are eager to get their beaks on the cobs already, but they've still got a while to go until ripe.

A quick peek into the greenhouse now shows tiny white flowers on the peppers. I'm quite pleased with these as last year they failed to bloom.

And finally my very first cucumber! I'm wondering now when to cut it, as I understand they don't usually grow to supermarket size...any ideas?

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