That’s both the summer solstice and the calendar midpoint passed. Half way through Wimbledon too and the Brits are dropping like flies. Blight in some of my potatoes too. A very ordinary summer.
Picking six things in the garden at this time of the year is about choosing what to put in, what to leave out. It’s surprising how often a plant is looking really good for only one shot at a six; if not this week it’ll be over by next, and last week it wasn’t even open.
Fuchsia magellanica ‘Arauco’. This has the same colouring as the slightly better known ‘Lady Bacon’ but is smaller growing. I planted it in the new area where the tunnel had been and should have put it nearer the front or planted shorter things in front of it. We’ve only had it a year so don’t yet know how hardy it will prove to be; if it isn’t killed back by frost it might get taller and be OK where it is.
I planted five bulbs of Lilium ‘Guinea Gold’, a martagon hybrid, three years ago and though they were chomped a bit by slugs they came through well enough for me to have added some more last autumn. I’ll probably get more this year too. They’re at the edge of my shady area and get dappled sunlight in early morning when they look lovely against the dark foliage of a camellia or, from a different angle, backed by Begonia luxurians. Dryopteris erythrosora fern is putting up its new colourful foliage alongside too, which matches astonishingly well, a happy accident.
White geraniums. Geranium sanguineum ‘Album’ is flowering its head off, the best it’s ever been. So too is Geranium pratense f. albiflorum, though as a much younger plant it has much less flower on it. Both will be well past their peak next week. I collected a few seeds from a drift of G. pratense f. albiflorum on a verge near Jamaica Inn, at Bolventor in the middle of Bodmin Moor. Both have flowers of pure white and both are lovely. Sorry, gotta break the rules, they share the slot.
While on the subject of white flowers, I put in my dark purple Iris ensata last week and this week it’s the turn of my white one, Iris ensata ‘Moonlight Waves’. If I’d checked the second of these pictures at the time I took it I’d have gone back out and taken it again having removed the two adjacent dead blooms. Too late now, it’s raining, and dark.
Cerinthe major ‘Yellow Gem’. I placed an order with Plant World for Dahlia campanulata and felt obliged to add a few things to make up a sensible order. I wanted a few annuals to quickly, if temporarily, fill the tunnel gone space, so I added these. They have grown prodigiously, are flowering beautifully against attractive glaucous foliage and are 30 inches high right beside the path, onto which they are encroaching, and with a bit more rain, collapsing.
Campanula poscharskyana, the Serbian bellflower, is a bit of a beast. It creeps underground by very slender runners that will go through the tiniest cracks in brickwork or paving and, as if that wasn’t enough, it produces seedlings fairly freely too. When it flowers like it is just now, all is forgiven. The flowers seem to be a magnet for slugs while the plant isn’t touched, or grows so fast it doesn’t matter.
It was raining earlier, now it’s dry but with showers forecast. I need to pick peas, which looks set to be a damp affair. The forecast for early next week is for wind and rain, so I need to get some things supported, especially Dahlias. We’re open again on Wednesday but so far only have two bookings. Rain is forecast so that may not change, next Sunday looks a better bet. The garden needs rain but the gardener doesn’t, in summary.
Be sure to check the rest of the SoS posts, the links are here.