Saturday, 11 June 2011

Summer approaches slowly, very slowly

Our temperatures are still yo-yo-ing, with nights (like last night) sometimes very cold, as low as 4 or 5 degrees C here. This is causing some stress to tender plants like courgettes, so I left the cloches on them to be safe. The days are chilly in the wind, but occasionally, just occasionally, the sun breaks through, it feels warm and you can dally outside to enjoy the flowers. These are sage flowers, from a big pot of sage I keep by the door. One plant in the centre has paler flowers than the others, but the nice thing about herbs is they can look good as well as taste good!
This is the yellow poppy which just plants itself where it likes in this area. When I'm weeding I tend to leave it alone because it's pretty and cheerful.
In the vegetable plot, the slug-nibbled courgettes are recovering, this one shows a lot of new growth at the base as it didn't lose its growing point. I bought two replacement plants (unnamed variety, so who knows what they'll do) at the garden centre this afternoon as I'm a bit short of replacement seed. Given our low night temperatures, I was unsurprised to see that even the plants at the garden centre showed signs of having got a bit cold - at this time of year they expect to be able to leave them in the unheated part, apparently global warming hasn't kicked in here.
Here's the pale pink peony in my garden, it always manages to grow the biggest flower outside the support so it droops a bit. I had to support it with my hand, such a lovely flower.
And here's my pot peony, it has 8 flowers this year and is looking magnificent, just like the ones on Gardener's World last night, in Monet's garden. You can always tell what's been on Gardener's World if you go to the garden centre the day after. Today the herb section was humming with people after Monty Don's piece on herbs. Normally I'm one of a small minority of people who linger there, but this afternoon there were lots of people agonising over all the varieties of mint, sage and lavender.

Anyway, I hope to be sowing more seed tomorrow. I bought replacement coriander, parsley and leeks today as I do seem to have lost some in the monsoons of the last month. Let's hope the rain (and hail!) holds off for long enough tomorrow.
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