It’s the middle of the month again, time for another Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day post. In my garden it’s still very much summer, and with the glorious weather we have had the last 2 weeks – and is expecting the next couple of weeks, summer is very much on the agenda. In fact, by Thursday we might get above 25 degrees C, which we haven’t had since the first week of August – since August turned out to be the coldest in 20 or so years. The days are getting shorter and the leaves have started to fall, but as long as we have summer weather, who cares?!
It’s getting increasingly difficult to walk down my path, the plants are tall and lush and the jungle feeling is certainly here! I have to water every other day since we haven’t had a drop of rain in almost 3 weeks.
The geraniums on my shelf are basking in the sunshine, still in flower although a bit sparingly compared to earlier in the summer.
The sunflowers are so tall I struggle to deadhead them.
I have cut down two of my clematises, they were enormously big and only flowering at the end that was growing in the camellia, the actual ‘towers’ of clematises on the obelisks were just masses of leaves, most of it dead as I had not kept up with spraying with anti-fungus treatment. Last month I got rid of the whole lot.
My nursery shelves are groaning with the weight of my 4 vegetable baskets. I was so worried about my tomatoes not getting ripe that I cut off all the flowers and lots of leaves, so at least those that were green would have a chance. I must have cut off at least 300 flowers!
And look! Only 1 week later, and I have already started eating tomatoes :-)
The chillies are slowly getting red too, this is 'Cayenetta'. I have not yet had a taste of this but I suspect it will be too hot for my taste.
And this is 'Loco', which I have had a taste of, both chillies were advertised as ‘mild’, but I don’t think there is anything mild to this one – too hot for me anyway. It looks beautiful though, dark purple when unripe and bright red when ripe. If anyone can suggest the name of a really mild chilli I can grow next year I would be grateful, 'Cayenetta' has a Schoville heat rating approx. 20.000 and 'Loco' has 24.000shu. I will try both of them in green as well, as they tend to be milder before they have turned red, but I would love to grow a chilli that was much milder. I have looked online, but often chillies are describes as hot, medium and mild....not very helpful as what’s mild to one person is hot to another.
Another view from the bottom of the garden, the dahlias and sunflowers dominate, but between them there are still lots of roses.
The red ‘Crimson Cascade’ and the yellow ‘Freedom are the oldest roses in my garden.
This is one of the newcomers, the David Austin rose ‘Wildeve’.
And this is an un-named rose, tagged as ‘Candy Stripe’, but obviously wrongly labelled!
And this is the pink pot rose, it should have had a bigger container a long time ago as it no longer thrive where it is, but it still manages to produce the odd flower.
No problem with flower production here, this is the cream pot rose which is growing in the ground and is a very happy rose.
And this is....not a rose, but the giant begonia 'Prima Donna'.
And I thought I had to show off my stripy dahlia again, the one I showed you in my last post that had changed colour from orange to stripes. Here are more stripy flowers!
Aren’t they spectacular?
And I found this little fellow gorging on one of the Dahlia 'Mary Eveline' for ages.
This is a newcomer this year, Dahlia Nuit D'Ete, gorgeous colour!
Up in the bed at the patio I have two pots I haven’t showed off yet, with oleanders. Yep, oleanders in London. I bought them last spring as tiny plants and they are now quite tall, you can see them on either side of the hanging lantern. They really need to be re-potted soon, or perhaps cut down, not sure yet what I will do with them, they are NOT going in the ground – I am not letting them run riot in my garden as they can become very big!
For now I am enjoying the flowers, they have been flowering non-stop since June and look very pretty. However, I always thought oleanders had highly scented flowers, but these have no scent at all, that’s a bit disappointing.
Behind the oleanders, in between the mass of sunflowers I have another treasure, I have finally been able to grow a Lobelia cardinalis! This is my third attempt – the other two looked fine the first summer for never to be seen again. This time I planted the lobelia in a container and I watered like mad last summer, it rained all winter and I have kept up the watering since it stopped raining in February. That’s been the key to the success I think, they really need a soaking wet soil all the time which is difficult to keep in the ground, easier in a container.
Here is a shot of what was supposed to be my new white flower bed. Ehh....supposed to. Well, I have had white flowers here, I had 2 flowers on the white oriental poppy, but that was in May. And I had a white geranium here in June. And I had lots of white lilies here – in July. But space is limited so I have had to put other things here too.
But there are still some white flowers here, this is a very pretty asters, Aster ageratoides 'Ashvi' which has just started to flower and will go on until late November.
And the white anemone, flown over as a seed from somewhere is flowering again, also very pretty. But it’s hardly a ‘white bed'.
Across the path the penstemons have been flowering for a while, this is 'Strawberries and Cream'.
And this is Penstemon Pensham 'Amelia Jayne'.
And this is Penstemon 'Rich Ruby'. All three are growing together, entangled, and I like the colour combination.
I can’t have a September post without some sunflowers close up, this is Helianthus annuus 'Valentine'.
And this is Helianthus debilis 'Vanilla Ice'.
Do you remember I said I cut down two of my clematises? 'Gravetye Beauty' has just started to shoot again, but 'Ville de Lyon' has already got buds! I don’t know if they will flower before the winter but if this amazing weather continues perhaps they might :-)
And now to some fuchsias, can't really have a post without fuchsias, can I ?! These 'Annabel' fuchsias have flowered for FIFTEEN MONTHS !! There seem no end to it though, there are new buds produced as soon as the old ones are thrown off. I keep cutting off the fruits as much as I can and that obviously helps, but even so.
This ‘Bella Rosella’ is a cutting from the main plant, I took the cutting in November last year and it started to flower in June.
Here is the mother, my big ‘Bella Rosella’, almost 10 years old, now growing in a container standing on an upturned 10 litre pot, as the branches are so long it otherwise would reach the ground. I will take more cuttings this autumn too :-)
And this pretty fuchsia is 'Mrs Popple', one of the most hardy you can get, and very undemanding.
This fuchsia is one of my newcomers this year, I looked for a long time for a red + red fuchsia, this one is called ‘Flash’.
And this is 'Perpetual Falls' , a hardy trailing fuchsia. The bumble bees just loves all the fuchsias.
Look how it almost vanishes inside the flower!
This monstrous size fuchsia is actually 3 plants in one large pot. When I planted them in early spring 2013 the plants looked so tiny in this large pot. They soon filled that one out! They have all been flowering since July last year and this summer it has been so many flowers you could hardly see the leaves. The flower production has tapered off a bit now, probably because the plants are suffering in this way too small pot. But I haven’t had the heart to scoop them out, divide and cut them down yet, not until they have stopped flowering. When that will be is anybody’s guess, if we get another winter like last year the fuchsias might just go on and on until next autumn!
I had a count last month to see how many fuchsias I have, and I got to 56 all in all. I have managed to give away a couple, and the squirrel has killed yet another in my front garden so I think I am down to around 50. Space is limited so I have found a way to keep the trailing ones, some are hanging on my tall conifer!
And some on my fence. They are hanging on these great brackets, beautifully simple but effective. Just a firm wire to hang on a hook, made to fit a 2L pot. I found them on Amazon.
Despite all this talk of summer there are signs of my garden slowing down and preparing for autumn. The seed pods of Lilium regale are getting big and I will soon sow my usual tray of lilies.
The Skimmia japonica 'Rubella' has got their red flower buds, these will stay like this until May when the flowers open, a lovely sight in the autumn and winter garden.
The first flowers of Primula vulgaris 'Miss Indigo' has emerged again.
And the Primula vulgaris has....well, they are flowering all the time in my garden so they are not really an autumn sign, but I have cut them down, all of them and that gave them a boost to start producing new leaves and flowers.
But my Bonsai tree, made from a Parthenocissus henryana is definitely starting to show some autumn colours, the red leaves are spectacular.
Out in the front garden there isn’t much difference from last month, the plants are bigger, but still in full flower.
So even though the calendar says autumn from today of, or even from the first of September if you go by the meteorological calendar, I don’t really have the feeling of autumn just yet, not at all really.
And before I finish today’s post I just want to tell you that I have had another visit from a fellow blogger! Do you remember that I had a visit from Beth from Plant Posting last October? I wrote then that I would love to have visit from other bloggers coming to London, and last Friday I had a visit from Nadezda from Nadezda’s garden.
Nadezda and her son Nickolay came to London for a week’s stay and after visiting Kew Gardens on Friday they took the tube over to my place and came to see my garden.
We had a lovely couple of hours together outside in my garden and the time went so quickly. It’s really interesting to actually meet people I have met through my blog, people I have been ‘visiting’ online but never seen. If you are ever in London, please make sure you set aside a day to visit my garden, it is not as spectacular as Kew Gardens, but well worth a visit :-)
Let me leave you with a vase of flowers from my garden, sunflowers and dahlias, the flowers of September here in my garden. I am linking my post to Carol at May Dreams Garden, If you head over to her blog you can see many more gardens in flower around the world right now. Until next time, take care.