The week the mercury touched 30

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the first of the Hybrid Tea roses with Phlomis in the background

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Sweet Pea

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Yellow-flowering Iris, Delphinium and Lysimachia (Garden Loosestrife)

For the last 10 days, a period of high pressure has hung over south east Scotland. I don’t ever remember it being so warm, certainly not for the 10 years we’ve been here. The temperatures have been up in the mid 20’s and a couple of evenings ago it reached 30 degrees. And it’s set to continue for another week at least. Certainly making up for last summer!

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Canterbury Bells

This warm dry weather should help the butterflies; they need all the help they can get and very few were in evidence last year. When out for my early morning walk with the trusty hound this morning, I came across a group of them (not sure what the collective noun is for butterflies – a flight, or a flutter, perhaps) in a sunlit clearing – small black-brown butterflies with a lighter coloured rim edging the underside of their wings – Meadow Browns, I think.

August’s usually a good month for butterflies here, particularly Small Tortoiseshells, Painted Ladies and Red Admirals so we’ll see what the buddleias attract when they come into flower.

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Delphinium

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Achillea flower bract

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Lychnis

The dry weather has meant dry soil, so much of the time has been spent watering the recently planted bedding and herbaceous. For those plants in the borders, once a week’s enough, but the pots have needed a watering every couple of nights.

20130712-175550.jpgStill, less rain has meant fewer weeds, and for that I’m grateful, although in the shady, north-facing border there is much to be done as the creeping buttercup has, well, crept over much of the earth, so this is the current project. When I’ve tidied it up, I’ll do a post as it’s quite colourful at the moment.

The grass growth too has slowed, which means faster cutting with less box-empties!

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Climbing rose “New Dawn”

The plants are really enjoying our tropical weather with the roses coming into bloom, including the first of our new David Austin roses that we planted in the spring. The herbaceous continues to flourish, although the bedding is starting to come into bloom as competition! The first of the dahlias and mesembryanthemums are starting to flower, so that will be them until the first frosts in October or maybe November if we’re lucky.

In the pond, the water lilies have all come into bloom too, but we’ll leave that for a future post.

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our ‘functional’ sweet pea frame!

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Herb garden corner. The rocket has gone to seed, but it has rather attractive flowers, popular with an elderly garden resident

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the east end of the south-facing border, with Feverfew (Pyrethrum), golden and green, taking centre stage

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26 Responses to The week the mercury touched 30

  1. I, too, admire all of your garden but especially the sweet peas. They’re challenging to grow in my part of the world (or at least they’re challenging for me); it gets too hot too quickly. And your Canterbury bells are lovely as well. In my very early gardening days, I tried to grow them on my windowsill. Seems I didn’t read the seed package very well. 🙂

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    • Sweet peas seem to suit our relatively cool climate, but this summer I’ve been giving them quite a lot of water from the can as they are thirsty and if they start drying out, they can be hard to get back into flower again, I’ve found.

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  2. Love the vibrancy of the colour of the flowers. What camera do you use? Nice photography 🙂

    In Melbourne we are supposedly in winter, and yet the first daffodil has just opened, and it’s only the middle of July.

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    • Yes, I’m quite keen on bright colours, Sandi! I used to admire Christo Lloyd and his ever more daring creations at Great Dixter. Makes the heart sing. Some need the dark glasses though – particularly the Californian poppies and the Mesembryanthemums which are starting to come into bloom! The camera is a humble iPhone 5. Photography is not my strong point but iPhones have some clever tech built in which helps the ‘point and shoot’ brigade like me!

      I love this concept that you are in the middle of winter down there (although I absolutely wouldn’t wish winter upon anyone!) – one of the fascinating things about garden blogs is seeing the passage of the seasons all over the world! But that daffodil must be months early by my reckoning!

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  3. So beautiful! I could wander your paths for days. I’m convinced my cottage garden needs a beautiful wall! :). Last year we had 9 weeks of drought. This year we’ve had greater than normal rainfall but not extreme as those to the south and east of us have had. We are grateful!

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  4. Would love the C to be also posted in F for US readers! Here we are having the wettest June/July on record in Central VA, US. Makes for lousy gardening and mosquitoes galore.

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    • Of course, delighted! 30 C equals 86 degrees F, which is unusual for east of Scotland where the north easterly breezes cool us down! The Open Golf Championship is on not so far away so for once they are getting good weather on the fairways! So sorry to hear of your monsoons though – there’s something very odd with our weather at the moment!

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      • Thank you! Your world reads like a slice of heaven! Would love some NE breezes here now. Forecast is high temps and high humidity this week. At least rain is limited for a time being, long enough for me to do some long overdue weeding! Cheers!

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      • And the high temps are continuing here, but not quite as warm as the 86F we had last week. No rain though – still having to water the plants!

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      • Plenty of rain showers here every day, yet yesterday the temp reached 99F at one point and the humidity off the charts! Mosquitoes galore! Do you have mosquitoes? Be well! D.

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      • No, not mosquitoes, fortunately! We do have the famous Scottish midge to contend with at times, though. He frequents the shadier parts of the garden, particularly at dusk. Not so many around this year, I don’t think – perhaps just too dry. Good bat food!

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  5. Amazing photos. The colors are so intense. And I can smell the sweet peas from here!

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    • Thanks Marian, the sweet peas have been super this year! And of course you have to keep picking them so we have a continuous vase of them in the house from now until the first frosts! Thanks for your kind comments – good old iPhone!

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  6. Helen Johnstone says:

    I never have many butterflies in my garden despite growing all the usual butterfly liked plants. I sometimes wondering if its because many of my neighbours aren’t that keen gardeners and the butterflies cant make the distance to my oasis or whether they are actually declining.

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  7. Butterflies are scarce this summer. Not nearly as many bees, either. Love your sweet peas and the mass of feverfew in the south-facing border.

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  8. Just lovely in your garden beds….our butterflies are missing with the hot wet tropical weather we are having…last summer it was hot and dry so few butterflies then as well but more than this year.

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  9. pbmgarden says:

    Such warm weather without rain can be very challenging but your garden seems to be handling it very well. Everything looks great. I especially admire the south-facing border in your last photo.

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  10. Your garden looks lush and beautiful and your photos are wonderful. I love sweet peas so I really enjoyed that photo. It has been extremely hot and humid here in New England this summer as well.

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