This is neither the time nor the place to reprimand the climate change naysayers. For those who do not avidly study the UK weather, it is hot here, unprecedented for this vanilla isle, and scarily so. Record breaking temperatures are forecast. We are not talking about good record breaking. There is no one in a blazer from Guinness holding a stopwatch and a clipboard. It isn’t the same as juggling 63 copper kettles whilst whistling Beethoven’s Ninth or being the first to hop the length of Offa’s Dyke dressed as a kangaroo. This is bad record breaking.
Earlier in the year we had “danger to life” storms, now we have “danger to life” heat. “Told you so’s” offer faint satisfaction, a Pyrrhic victory. Apart from the small matter of our survival on this planet, as gardeners this extended dry and hot period poses “danger to life” for our plants. It is often near impossible to keep everything properly hydrated (including ourselves). We have to pick favourites for special treatment, the vulnerable, the special, the sentimental. Tricky. But we struggle on. Anyone crying yet? Or perhaps screaming “for goodness sake, stop your moaning and get on with it”? As I said, not the time or place, we come to SoS for joy not despair. If you want to share some happy souls’ garden universes, pop over to The Prop (who hopefully has not been out running in the crazy heat) and let your spirits be refreshed. Ok, shall we get this done?
I do love a marigold; calendula, tagetes, French, African, Mexican or common, I love the lot of them. In the past I have struggled to protect tagetes from the demon slimy ones. This year I have succeeded. More luck than judgement, I fear. Come back next year and molluscs might have caught on.
Which leads beautifully onto another marigold, although of a different genera. I must warn the purists out there, I am a little vague on the name front this week. Pure laziness. At the end of my last season on Button Moon I collected some seed that took my fancy, with permission, obviously. I wrote “Westwell Hall Buff Calendula” on the packet. One out of six plants came true, or rather what I remember to be true. Not bad. And the others accentuate its glorious dignity with their brightness.
We have a waterlily! It has caused much excitement Chez Nous (forgive me Fred). This is its fifth leaf, the birth of each is carefully monitored and celebrated. If a flower ever appears there will be fireworks. I can’t remember the name, but it has a red flower and is in the diddy category.
Next we have the glorious Dahlia merckii. Last year, or perhaps the year before, I moaned about not receiving part of a dahlia order. This plant was sent to me by the wonderful Anna in Cumbria. To say I was pleased is an understatement. Now allowed to have a free root run, it has done wonders this year. Here it is propping itself up on Diascia personata, a beautiful thug. Thanks again Anna.
I am wittering on a bit this morning, must speed up, my boiled egg is on!
I have never grown monarda in my own garden. This is Monarda ‘Cobham Beauty’. What was I waiting for?
Finally a sunflower. Can’t remember it’s name. Not sure it is necessary.
That is your six. Keep on doing what you can. Keep cool. Keep the faith.