Back on the watering treadmill but who could complain about such glorious weather. The Dahlias are beginning to kick off, which in gardening terms is my yardstick for summer proper. Six for this week, easy peasy.
Hydrangea serrata ‘Shojo’. This is on the edge of my shady area and gets very little direct sun though it is in good light. I could do with it not getting any bigger, it’s between two paths and overhanging both. I need to master the art of containing it without losing too much flowering. I also need to take a better picture of it, I’ve made it look dull when it is actually that pale shade of blue that glows in the gloaming.
Begonia ‘Torsa’ is beginning to live up to the hype. I potted it from a 3 to a 7.5L pot then plunged it in a shady spot under a Camellia. It appears to very happy but I will lift it to overwinter then plant it properly in the ground to stay out next year. It is supposed to be as hardy as B. grandis evansiana. I have a number of small plants of it as insurance now so I could take the risk this winter but I think, even if it survived OK, that it would be much later into growth next year if left out compared to being brought in. The foreground leaf is 14 inches wide by 16 inches long.
Filipendula palmata ‘Rubra’. Happy in sun provided it has plenty of moisture at the roots, this grows amongst Astilbes in the bog garden.
Veronica spicata. Given to me by the same lady who gave me the Filipendula. Not quite sure what to do with it I planted it in the hot sunny bank at the top of the garden and it has mostly been too dry, miserable and underperforming. As a result, I have not been minded to give it a better piece of real estate. This year the weather cards seem to have played out just right and it is surpassing itself mightily. The question remains, do I leave it there, knowing that it can be good, or has it earned a bed in a better hotel.
Malva sylvestris ‘Bibor Felho’ came my way as seeds from a neighbour’s abandoned allotment. I shredded the plants I had in the garden last year and was rewarded with a clump on the allotment where I spread the shreddings. These ones in the garden were planned; sown in cells and planted out when small. They’re five feet tall, will get taller and flower for months. In the tougher conditions of my allotment they produced more flowers and less leaf. The second sowing Cosmos in front of them, at three feet are more than twice the height of an earlier sowing, buried beneath them.
With a big patch of ground needing to be filled quickly, I grew annuals on a larger scale this year than for many years. Calendula ‘Flashback Mixed’ came from Real Seeds, who mostly do vegetables. Knowing Calendulas, I imagine I’ll be growing them for years, whether I want to or not. I think it’s a case of liking them, but wouldn’t be heartbroken if I didn’t have them.
A day of gardening tweaks lies ahead. Lots of little things, preening and primping. There’s more needs doing on the allotment but I’m not keen, it’s too hot. Picking fruit won’t wait, blackcurrants, my favourite but the fiddliest. Links to other sixes in the usual place. Enjoy the sun.