Dried up….

Six things in my garden today.  If you want to join in and share 6 things from your garden then here is to how to participate https://thepropagatorblog.wordpress.com/2017/09/18/six-on-saturday-a-participant-guide/ It’s fun, you see interesting things in other people’s gardens and lovely 6ers chat and comment on your pics.

Busy, busy here at OptimistGardener Towers – a couple of out-patient appointments (take all day), a day shopping with sister (much shrieking with laughter as we attempt to try on clothes that might have been suitable 40 years ago), and a day’s consultancy work which reminded me why I retired (hot offices, tedious meetings and OTHER PEOPLE).  So 6 on Saturday has turned into 6 on Sunday, not for the first time!

It’s so dry here, and also very hot, temperatures at a minimum of 27 degrees for weeks and some days as high as 30 degrees.  Here in Wales we’re used to cooler, wetter weather and although I’m trying not to complain it would be good to have a spell of rain.  I’ve given up completely with the high raised bed – just impossible to keep any moisture in it.

These are doing well.  A lace-cap hydrangea, the name of which is long forgotten and that does this lovely pink and blue thing, as if it can’t quite make up its mind.  In front is a clump of Scabiosa atropurpurea ‘Black Knight’ that I somehow managed to keep over winter.  It is loving the dry, hot weather.  The hydrangea needs a big can of water every couple of days.IMG_0555

I’m showing you this so you can see just how desert-dry the soil is – it’s an Achillea that I thought had succumbed to the conditions, but it’s managed to pop out a couple of these bright pink flowers.  I think it’s called ‘Desert Eve Red’ so it’s aptly named.  You can see that the border is bone dry and bone hard with deep cracks.IMG_0556

This Veronica is shrugging off the heat and drought with aplomb.  It’s twice as big as last year, has been in flower for almost a month now and is just going over.  The bees love it.  This is also a good picture for showing you how totally overrun I am with Verbena bonariensis seedlings.  Fast as I pull them out, more appear – like grey hairs when I was younger and minded about them…In both cases, I have given up and let them do their thing.IMG_0557

I love crocosmia and these two are beautiful.  They have been in pots all summer as I haven’t got around planting them out and now the soil is too hard to try.  Consequently they are needing a lot of watering attention.  The orange one is called ‘Coleton Fishacre’ and the one with larger, rather lovely salmon pink and apricot flowers is ‘Limpopo’.  Both are divine and I hope will forgive me for neglecting them.IMG_0560

Earlier in the season I spread garden compost on part of this border and surprise, surprise one or two unexpected plants have shown up.  Here is a tomato plant which is doing quite well without any assistance and a marigold too.  I do love opportunists and I haven’t the heart to move them.  More verbena bonariensis seedlings too…IMG_0558

And finally… this mallow is defying the odds in a pot that is too small for it.  We thought it had died in the Beast from the East so we dug it up and put the dried twigs in a pot ‘just in case’, as you do, and here it is.  I think it’s ‘Barnsley Baby’  and I shall nurture it from now on.  It has such lovely delicate pink flowers with a deep flush at the base and a yellow centre.  Those rather sad, scorched leaf tips to the left of it are a very unhappy Rodgersia podophylla.  IMG_0561

So, there you have them, six for the weekend!  Hope you’re all enjoying your gardens!

The Optimistic Gardener

11 thoughts on “Dried up….”

  1. It’s interesting that the hydrangea is pink and blue…combination of soil types just there perhaps? The tomato is surprisingly sturdy and healthy given the weather. I always find that self seeded tomatoes are the tiny ones.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh my! You have two flavors of crocosmia too! I was just mentioning to someone else that I would not feel right about growing it because it is such an invasive weed here, although I do keep a clump of it in my downtown planter box. It was overgrown when I got the box years ago, so I pulled almost all of it out, leaving only a compact clump in the middle. For the past few years, it has been behaving itself.
    What is that yucca behind the crocosmia? Is it a variegated Yucca gloriosa?


      1. Boring?! It can be a striking humongous perennial in the right situation. I used to get big canes from specimens that needed to be removed, and plug them like very big cuttings to grow as a deer fence. I do not know why, but the deer avoid them. It might be that they instinctively perceive the foliage as something that can poke them, like that of Joshua tree.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. That’s a lovely combo, the hydrangea w/the dark scabiosa in front. I love the crocosmia pairing as well. Tomato volunteers . . . yes. Those & potato pop-ups (someone doesn’t let her compost stew long enough). They always give me a grin & a feeling of waiting to open a present as they begin to produce. Absolutely adore that corvid plaque behind the tomato plant. It has a bronze tint to it, but is it ceramic? Adore it. And the mallow!


  4. Hi,
    Thanks! Guilty as charged about the compost. Every year I vow not to put anything with seeds in there, foliage only, no weeds etc. Every year I fail.
    Yes the corvid plaque is ceramic – I give a bit more detail in a previous blog, 2 or 3 ago, if you scroll back…


    1. My guilty charge was to myself! I think if I put it at the bottom of the pot, it’ll never make it up. Most things don’t, but potato plants certainly do. Your blogs are listed on my computer by category, not chronologically – am I missing how to go back 2-3 blogs? Or do you mean 2-3 SoS ago?


    1. I finally got to that link today & actually remember reading that post. My mother & son are both corvid folk, so your obvious love of them reverberated clearly on this end. Thanks for giving me the link. It was a good 2nd read.

      Liked by 1 person

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