It is a year since I began posting weekly report about The Slope, I actually began posting on Tuesdays but changed day at some point. When I began I imagined I might change the view after a year but as this area in still changing I will continue until I feel it is no longer interesting to my readers nor informative for me.
The weather this week has been incredibly hot, in the greenhouse there was a high of 44.2°C way over 100°F, outside the greenhouse the temperatures are in the mid to high 30°s. I am now getting up earlier each day so that in theory I can finish working outside before it gets unbearably hot; in reality I usually stay outside until about 1 pm! So I think I can report that summer has arrived.
I think the slope looks very different this week. I took most of the images last evening at about 8.30 pm so the flowers of Eschscholzia californica are all closed, but many are now just seed-heads ready to burst, spilling their seeds to produce new plants for next year; if I cut back the plants (many are brown and shrivelled now) they will often re-sprout and to flower again in autumn when the rain arrives.
Until the hot weather arrived ten days ago the foliage of the acanthus was still luxuriant green, the foliage is now ugly and yellow but the flower spikes look stunningly architectural.
On the wall by the gate is a cactus; we have Opuntia, Prickly pear or Fig of India as the Italians call it; but this is different, a miniature version that doesn’t produce fruit but does have these delightful flowers, but don’t touch, they are covered in needle-like hairs that are impossible to remove once imbedded in a finger.
If you would like to see how the slope differs today to a year ago you can read about it here.