The Slope on Tuesday 9th May

We have had thunder storms during the last week.  During the night last Tuesday it rained for several hours, refreshing the garden so much that by the weekend there were more roses.  Although the day time temperatures are pleasantly warm they are not HOT, so I am enjoying this summer very much more than this time last year when drought conditions were already making themselves felt.  Yesterday there were thunder storms again but only a few drops of rain, not even enough to wet the ground.

From high on the slope looking accross towards the olives

From high on the slope looking accross towards the olives

From high on the slope looking accross towards the olives on,  the other side of the drive. white Oleander in the foreground

From high on the slope looking accross towards the olives on, the other side of the drive. white Oleander in the foreground


The view out to the wider world

The view out to the wider world, Perovskia in the foreground

Looking up the drive from midway up

Looking up the drive from midway up

Stipa tenuissima and Verbascum

Stipa tenuissima and Verbascum


The images of the slope were again taken in the morning at just after 8 am.  Some parts of the slope are in bright sunlight others remain in deep shadow.  Verbascum sinuatum (I call this Verbascum chaxii, which is the very similar cultivated variety which must be derived from it) has begun flowering now, this is another plant blown into the garden from the surrounding fields; a biennial that flourishes in the dry conditions but flowers for longer if there is a little rain.  I did buy some Verbascum chaixii f. album ‘Wedding Candels’ but it only flowered for one season and hasn’t self-seeded; I must try some others from seed.

Verbascum sinuatum

Verbascum sinuatum

Verbascum sinuatum

Verbascum sinuatum

20130709_9999_15 What effect is the weather having in your garden?  Is it very different from last year?

24 thoughts on “The Slope on Tuesday 9th May

  1. Beautiful Verbascum! Last year we had a very dry spring and then real heat for most of July and August, so my garden was frazzled by this time last year! I think it was the same for you. I’m really enjoying the lavender this summer, as it hasn’t got burnt yet. It opened just after that heatwave we had in mid-late June. It’s also very warm but not too HOT here! (About 25/26°C)

  2. Ieri c’è stato un temporale spaventoso, è caduta tantissima pioggia e soprattutto le perovskie si sono accasciate a terra. Sì qualche piccolo danno, ma sono anche contenta che la terra sia bagnata di nuovo. Il verbasco sinuatum lo avevo notato fiorito l’anno scorso nel mio terreno, quest’anno con i lavori in corso è sparito.

  3. Would you believe it Christina, we could do with some of your rain!! It is so hot, and has been for well over a week now, and no sign of it getting cooler all week. This time last year it was rain, rain and more rain, what a difference, the temperatures are up to nearly 30C , the plants and I are wilting!

    • The plants will survive, but I have noticed here this spring that when they receive a lot of water they grow so profusely that when it stops raining they wilt for a while, but then they will adapt. Be brave and don’t water Pauline, unless it is a plant like a hydrangea that needs buckets of water always!

  4. I keep trying to go xeric, but then things get looking a little wilty in the heat and I can’t resist giving them a drink. More heat here than usual but not drastically different from last year. I covet your white Olender and am trying to think of a place for Perovskia. You keep planting these ideas in my head.

  5. I’m so envious about your thunderstorms, we had any here and drought is taking over, hot hot but not as hot as last year, as you said indeed.
    On the picture following the white oleander, there are apparently andropogon scoparius (schyzawhatever) on the background and stipa but what’s just next to the verbascum? A ‘simple’ pennisetum? Leaves look so narrow…

    • I do have andropopgon scoparius but not in that picture. I think what you can see are my Panicums, Warrior and Heavy Metal. They don’t grow very tall for me on my very free draining soil. Some I divided and planted in a friend’s garden are about double the height. The soil there is heavy clay (it does have its compensations!). I also have Penesetum which seeds about but again not in that picture.

        • OK I went outside to actually check what’s growing just there. Green Panicum, Blue Panicum as before. Stipa tenuissima everywhere. Only other small grass-like plant is Tubaglia which I moved to the slope last autumn (or maybe the one before) from the LHB. It’s flowering a bit but nothing like the year I first bought it. It should be happy where it is! Sorry I’m not being more helpful.

          • OK I’ve watched again better and yes, it’s warrior growing in front of the verbascum. Sorry to have bothered you but they are incredibly short! That’s why you didn’t think of panicums for that screening between yellow and magenta, or whatever it was…

            • Hi Alberto, I’m very happy to have this kind of conversation! By the way we say “I’ve looked” rather than “I’ve watched”. You watch tv, and look at something (a view, a plant an image). I hope you don’t mind me saying. And right about the screening, although the Hemerocallis are just foliage now so not a problem, maybe it doesn’t matter about separating the colours.

            • Thanks for correcting me, if only people did it whenever I write or say something wrong I would be teaching English by now! About the screening thing I agree with leaving as it is, I’ve just suggested a grass in the place of another primary coloured plant.

            • Your English is usually excellent Alberto, The problem of the division of the two colours is that it is needed under a nicely shaped Arbutus tree and anything too tall will spoil the look of that; I think I can live with the clash for the short time it occurs.

  6. I have started watering daily in the borders and vegetable patch. I haven’t got your cool head. Despite this, when I was away for three days this week everything managed fine without the water. We don’t usually get the constant heat we are getting just now but the garden is loving it. Amelia

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