Observations on this drought
by Wendy Syddall
If you’ve followed my blog over the past few months you’ll know that in the northwest of England where I live we have been having a very hot and dry summer. The driest I can remember. It’s got me thinking about how we garden for this weather if it continues in years to come which we’ve been told it is likely to! We’ve narrowly avoided a hose pipe ban which is good, however, one of my neighbours is wasting water hosing his driveway and grass and I was hoping that could be stopped. My mum, by the way thought we should give up planting and gardening altogether if we have continued hot summers but I love my garden and am of course vehemently against it!
So, anyway, I’ve been looking at what is doing ok in the garden and what is not and here’s what I’ve noticed.
1. I’ve not watered the rudbeckia much and it’s thriving – I was threatening to reduce it as it takes up a lot of space but maybe that’s a bad idea
2. It’s been a good flowering year for the roses, some have been watered, others haven’t
3. It’s been good for budleijas, again plants that have been given little extra water
4. The lupins put on an amazing display at the beginning of the summer but have been finished flowering for weeks. I’m about to cut them back completely and ass if it makes a difference
5. The Argyranthemum has flowered very well with little water, and I’ve just dead headed it as there are new buds, however it does have wilder
6. However, the phlox and astilbe plants and some heucheras are very unhappy and mainly brown. The astrantia was also very unhappy but I’m not keen on them so it was a good chance to get rid of it.
7. The crocosmias seem to have finished very quickly
8. The grass is growing in funny looking tufts and the edges are growing well. So no getting away from the edge cutting job sadly!
9. Lastly for now, the lavender, again barely watered is doing well and the dahlias in pots (watered most days)
I am interested to know your thoughts as to the effect the weather has had on your garden this summer.
Here in New England, we have had a wet summer which has had a fairly negative effect on my tomatoes. Besides the normal hornworms and blight I’ve also had leaf curl, and in general I have more tomatoes than I do leaves. So, I’ve been picking tomatoes to ripen inside and pitching the plants. Normally, we have more drought conditions and when that is the case, I choose to not install new plants in my garden during the summer so that I do not have to water them. My perennials usually survive. I may lose a plant here or there, but usually I can divide another and fill the space. Here’s hoping you get some rain soon. 🙂
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