End of Month View: Reconnecting

IMG_2684It was a joy to reconnect with the garden again after being away, a time to examine and reassess, to observe and consider – and to pluck the odd spent rose head or two of course. On the paved area ‘Dance de Feu’ is having a second flush on the pergola, as is ‘Munstead Wood’ in the big round tub, its new stems now pleasingly growing strong and straight,very different from the floppy stems it has produced up to now. In the foreground Sweet William, bargain plants from Aldi, are flowering well despite the lack of watering they get.The inspired use of the dead stems of the viburnum I somehow killed off (perhaps not personally, but it feels that way) to grow sweet peas up seems to paying off as they are growing strongly and getting ready to flower (left), whilst the big galvanised container has quickly filled out with fuchsia, petunia and a few spare Ammi visnaga and is also preparing for a big flourish:

paved.potsThe streamside area is in transition, as I wrote about earlier in the week, whilst the woodland remains its oasis of green calmness:

IMG_2707IMG_2687

The main herbaceous borders do look a little tired now, but the phlox are starting to come into their own, gradually building into reliable clumps:

IMG_2688EOMV.phloxThe woodland edge border is full mostly of foliage now, although Persicaria ‘Fire Tail’ is waving its firey tails whilst its ‘Red Dragon’ cousin apologises for the insignificance of it flowers:

Woodland.edgeThe bold borders also are chocabloc with foliage, not necessarily a good thing, particularly when you see or push through the jungly growth of the right hand border. Somewhere in the midst of those are some dahlias – growing them in pots next year and placing them in the borders is beginning to look like a good idea. At least the sweet peas are continuing to do well!

hot.bordersIMG_2709Beyond the wall the greenhouse and cutting beds are beginning to look more productive – particularly as the former received far more water while we were away than it usually would, thanks to our neighbour’s efforts. Various varieties of tomatoes are beginning to swell and I shall be watching out for the first ripe one, whilst on the staging a number of peppers and chillies given by a friend are also doing well, although I have to confess to being a little hesitant about using the latter – nice to see them growing though! The tomatoes are a mixture of my usual ‘Gardeners’ Delight’, the large ‘Marmande’, a trial of ‘Elisir’ for Which? Gardening and a couple of others from the chilli friend.

cutting.bedsStars of the blue & white border are a white phlox and a blue herbaceous clematis both of which have names that are not on the tip of my tongue – also various echinops and Rose ‘White Goose’ which is settling down very nicely against the wall. I shall look forward to it all the more in a few years time when it (they, as there are two of them) has really got going.

IMG_2699 IMG_2700The rose garden is having a little rest, as is the clematis colonnade which begs the addition of some later flowering varieties:

IMG_2701 IMG_2692This End of Month reconnection has shown me how much annuals and pots make a huge contribution at the end of July – something to work on in the future. The dry summer has made a difference of course, as in two months we have had 3 thunderstorms but no rain in the weeks in between – and although rain is forecast for tomorrow we have heard that before and will believe it when we see it. Thanks for rambling with me at the end of another month – don’t forget there is a map of the garden if you are unsure how it all fits in, and do visit Helen’s blog at Patient Gardener to view other gardens as she kindly hosts this meme.

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25 Responses to End of Month View: Reconnecting

  1. Pauline says:

    At last we have had some rain, just a bit during today, but hopefully lots more tonight! Your garden looks so much better than mine, and you have been away! The woodland here is so very dry, it looks like autumn already. Your hydrangeas are looking better than mine too, we are having to rescue ours with buckets of water, they look so pathetic.

    • Cathy says:

      I have noticed leaves coming down already, Pauline. Strange about the hydrangeas as mine have not been watered at all and have been fine. The one in the woodland edge border was the one that was left to sink or swim as I hoiked it out of its original home – and finally it is swimming! Hope yours pull through!

  2. Thanks for the tour of your lovely garden! I also need to augment our clematis with later blooming varieties in order to get a little more bang for our buck. A picture of the variety we have can be found here http://nestofsquirrels.com/2014/07/04/clematis-garden-fireworks/

  3. rusty duck says:

    The paved area is looking really colourful. Interesting you mention floppy stems on Munstead Wood, I’ve had exactly the same problem with Evelyn. Apparently these are the ones we should prune hardest, it makes them stronger. It certainly seems to work.

  4. Kris P says:

    I so wish we could grow phlox here – a few varieties are sold in local nurseries but, in my experience, they attract mildew like magnets. Did you do anything special to encourage the sweet peas to climb the Viburnum? I tried something similar at the base of a dead shrub in spring but the sweet peas in question steadfastly refused to climb.

  5. hillwards says:

    I hope you get your rain soon, ours was very light here but has still made a difference to the main borders, which seem to have stood up a little straighter now…

  6. Christina says:

    How very strange that you are preying for water and we have so much I have turned off the automatic irrigation. I realize I cod have a very different garden if my principals allowed me to irrigate more.

    • Cathy says:

      It is indeed. We had some rain on Friday night and Sat am and this seems to have been enough to refresh the garden, but barely fill the water butts again

  7. Annette says:

    Looking good and doesn’t seem to suffer from lack of rain yet. The Clematis integrifolia is very pretty, also you different foliage combinations in the woodland. The new soil looks nice and crumbly…anticipation 🙂 I have to go away now and am very sad to leave my beautiful garden behind. But I’m looking forward to coming back again!

    • Cathy says:

      It’s surprising how long things can manage without rain, even some pots – my borders haven’t been watered for years. The soil is good, Annette, and generally I was able to pick the larger stones out as I went along. Hope you have a fruitful time away (for your book?) and your garden survives without your love and care in your absence

  8. I love your phrase “oasis of green calmness”. That’s what I feel about our scented shrub border. When the rest of the garden is a riot of colour, (hopefully!) it is a source of calm and serenity, with its minimal flowering and abundance of green foliage. This is a tricky time of the season, when everything starts to feel (and often look) flat. It takes a bit of forethought and planning, to keep the interest going. You seem to be managing well though! Maybe we are now paying for our early good weather.

    • Cathy says:

      I have done quite a bit of trimming today, and what I notice now is foliage – shape and texture and colour, so that’s something to work on. Few actual gaps though, so that’s an improvement

  9. kate says:

    I’m very envious of your roses – wish I could grow them like that. Also, I’d never really thought about the pots contribution at this time of year, but you’re so right (my pots of lilies are lighting up two areas that would be so bleak without them)…

  10. it all looks good Cathy, I still love the woodland edge border best the textures and colours it looks good all year around, a new project sounds interesting, are you not having the stream any more,
    glad you had a nice time away with interesting detours, that’s what I miss traveling on public transport less opportunity for detours, Frances

    • Cathy says:

      hi Frances – no, the stream will still be there and the grass on the left of the path. It’s only the right side of the path that’s changing. I realised from your comment that we take our ability for detours almost for granted, as it’s something we do all the time. Of course, on public transport it is far more difficult so i apologise for not thinking about this.

      • Cathy don’t apologise, it was though something I missed greatly when I no longer had a car as I used to do detours too, public transport has other advantages like sleeping instead of driving, Frances

  11. Anna says:

    I enjoyed your EOMV Cathy. Are they sunflowers in waiting that I spy? They look tall creatures. I wonder if you have had the forecast rain today. It has poured down here!

    • Cathy says:

      Yes, Anna – and they are the best sunflowers I have ever grown, a trial for Which? Gardening. They are meant to be Ruby Eclipse but one is yellow and the other two that are opening do not look as ruby as the picture did! Some rain Friday night, Sat morning but not a lot in total 😦

  12. Hi Cathy, lots of lovely lush growth despite the dry spell,and what a pretty herbaceous clematis. I am contemplating a foray into phlox, for colour and scent, any you would particularly recommend? I think having dahlias and other late summer flowering plants in pots can work really well, after all, Carol Klein does it, and you don’t have to bother about lifting the tubers either, just let them dry out in the pots and keep them frost free. Your newly built bench is looking mighty fine.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks for the info on the dahlias – I was sure I’d given them enough attention this year but I suspect there is just too much competition in the borders. I shall go down the pot route next year, I think. Re phlox, mine were just whatever was available at the time, so nothing special, although I did have a collection from Hayloft which is getting to flowering size. I am pleased with the bench too!

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