Summer is suddenly here. Hot and humid. Gardening must be done early to avoid the heat and mosquitoes. Tasks need to be broken into small, manageable segments or there is overheating and tantrums.
Six things on this ‘dangerously hot’ Saturday that make me smile. 1. Prune. Before the heatwave my big old rose Cuisse de Nymphe had a major renovation prune in order to keep it in check but also to remove a lot of fossilised old wood from the base.
Here’s the pile of clippings waiting to be chipped up on a cooler day. I hope to promote stronger young growth that won’t flop around so much. The thorns are evil, especially when they get you in the scalp as you meander by with a cup of coffee at daybreak.
2. Plant. I have been trying to extend my flowering season into summer. These Shasta daisies and gaura should complement the hydrangeas in the hottest months.
3. Sow. I don’t direct sow many things as we have a very strong critter contingent, but these Shirley and opium poppies are exceptions I would never be without.
4. Harvest. Surprisingly Winter Density lettuce continues despite the heat. The first blueberries of the season. The birds start screaming at me the minute I open the netting to harvest the berries.
5. Grow. An experimental Charentais melon in a big pot. Growing at a rapid rate up the bannister of my deck stairs. Lots of flowers but so far no melons.
6. Bloom. I try to get as much blue as possible in my gardens. I leave you with this lovely Endless Summer/Nigella damascena combination.
Visit the website of the founder for more garden stories of the week. Stay cool!
Today is my first blogging anniversary. Thank you to The propagator and his Blog-followers for inspiration and guidance. Follow here: www.thepropagatorblog.com
It is the second night of Passover and Easter Saturday. All reasons to be cheerful.
It is also a full moon. I wish I knew or could retain more of the lore and legend surrounding the Spring holidays. My Six this week just celebrate the magic.
1. From the Passover Seder. Parsley, representing springtime and all it promises. It is in the ground this week and in 2 more weeks will be ready to be sampled!
2. Horseradish, the bitter herb, a reminder of hardship. This one is still very small and might be a dock! I’m not sure, but if it is horseradish it will be harvested for Rosh Hashana in the Autumn.
3. For certain, Easter peas. Sown on St Patrick’s Day (indoors of course) and planted on Good Friday according to (my) tradition. One row each of Lincoln & Topps. To be supplemented by more sowings outdoors. When I get around to it. I love peas.
4. Bloodroot, which has blood red sap. Seems symbolic of all the needless bloodshed and sacrifice that Spring holidays stand for….
5. Simple Daffodils. For me, the best harbingers of Spring. These are probably Ice Follies, or Mount Hood. They look to be ready for dividing. add that to the endless to-do list!
6. The white birds were one of my reasons for starting this blog. They arrive like tourists from a cruise ship in spring and congregate for their departure at the first threat of frost. They are back for the season. The male on the left has his ‘glad-rags’ on and is all ready for date night. She doesn’t look too sure….
I am catching up to the rest of you. I do have tulips already. I wait so long for early spring that I don’t want to move on to the next phase too quickly. Tulips can wait until next time.
Enjoy your week!
Prune, plant, sow, harvest, mow, bloom, feed, grow…
1. Prune. Its what I do mostly. Here’s last week’s pile o’ pruning, mostly brambles and holly. Roses next.
2. Plant. All unidentified ‘misc’ bulbs I hoarded over the winter and carefully potted up to see what they were, turned out to be – garlic!! Duly planted next to my October planted garlic.
3. Sow. Self sown Pushkinia. In every corner and crevice. Smelling strongly of gumdrops. Buzzing with bees and other assorted pollinators. Reminds me I need to get on with sowing annual flowers for summer and fall.
4. Bloom. Cornus mas is the 🌟 this week. Along with many Squill, Narcissus, Hellebore and Mr Magnolia. Terrible photo, great tree…
5. Feed. Homemade holly and bramble ramial chip mulch for my raspberry section.
6. Oh no! Here’s a charming little nest I found among the cut branches. I think it belonged to a pair of American robins. They have plenty of time to rebuild. This will be my last major pruning job for the spring so as not to disturb any more nests.
Spring is here at last. It is still cold, but everything is growing. Each trip around the garden brings something new and wonderful at this time of year.
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