The garden lives

During this hot, hot summer I have watched and then stopped watching as the plants succumbed to the heat; even plants that survive the drought don’t necessarily look all that good while they are surviving.But September brings life-giving rain, and mud slides as the earth slowly accepts and absorbs water.  Yesterday evening I glanced out of the window and saw that the evening light was wonderful so I grabbed the camera and captured a little magic – the garden is coming alive again, and I love it.

I have been busy planting and setting out the redesigned front area of the house.  This area needs new names, it is no longer the Formal garden, the names are finalised in my head yet but include a new woodland walk, a secret garden and an evergreen clipped area, but more about that soon, for now let me share my pleasure in the rejuvenated garden.

Looking west, 3 cypresses, Euphorbia rigida and Verbena bonariensis

Looking west, 3 cypresses, Euphorbia rigida and Verbena bonariensis

Sedum and Amaryllis

Sedum and Amaryllis

Sedum in the Large Island

Sedum in the Large Island

Sedum and Pennisetum villosum and Caesalpinia gilliesii which lost most of its leaves during the summer

Sedum and Pennisetum villosum and Caesalpinia gilliesii which lost most of its leaves during the summer

Small Island looking along upper slope path

Small Island looking along upper slope path

Large Island looking towards the terrace

Large Island looking towards the terrace

Even the roses on the pillars, R. Clair Martin are flowering again

Even the roses on the pillars, R. Clair Martin are flowering again

More sedum, Garlic clives

More sedum, Garlic clives

sedums and silvery plants of all kinds look wonderful together

sedums and silvery plants of all kinds look wonderful together

With many apologies for not keeping up with posting and joining other memes this month; have a wonderful weekend, Christina

 

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47 thoughts on “The garden lives

  1. Your garden does look really wonderful now that you aren’t having such high temperatures any more. The sedum look so pretty against all the silver foliage plants, definitely a case of “right plant, right place”!

    • The Sedums are one of the few plants that look fine even in the middle of the scorching summer heat; I have taken so many cuttings and will continue to do so. They are so easy from cuttings and I have many different cultivars that I want to increase.

  2. It just shows that you have planted well with plants that can survive in your climate. I love the Pennisetum especially. I tried some last year and it didn’t survive the winter, but believe it or not I am considering buying it again as I love it so much. I would just have to molly coddle it a bit this winter. Should be possible. Your Sedums look wonderful. I can’t believe a rose is flowering again though – it is lovely. I look forward to hearing your plans for your new areas.

    • The Pennisetum is slightly tender, if you can find a spot with free draining soil it will survive lower temperatures, here mine spreads by runners almost like couch grass and maybe by self seeding too. It does die right back in the winter and isn’t as pretty as the other grasses when it is dormant.

      • I do have spot with very free draining soil, but it is also rather windy and no protection. I might get a few small plant and try them in different places. I will certainly cover the crown this year.

    • This summer has been relentlessly hot and now at last I can sleep at night and enjoy being outside during the day. I know many people in the UK have had a cold summer but at least plants don’t die!

  3. So beautiful, Christina. Congratulations upon you and your garden making it through the hot and dry of summer. I know exactly how that feels: dragging through each day and then when the rains come–whew–a life affirming transition to a new growing season.

  4. The sedums and grasses are a godsend at this time of year and I do love the way you have planted lots of the pennisetum together in groups. The silvery foliage inbetween is perfect for that kind of light! My garden is also recovering after a record summer. I love being able to go out and do some cutting back without perspiring or worrying about sunburn! Enjoy this lovely time of year in your garden Christina. 🙂

  5. The garden looks beautiful after the refreshing rain. Your sedums are looking good, you seem to have quite a variety. Do you have any shorter varieties you like at this time of year and do the bees like them? Amelia

  6. Your garden is alive and kicking. ‘Claire Matin’ is really a beauty. Do the Sedums just hunker down when the heat is at its worst, then bloom in September? It looks great with the grasses.

  7. After a summer of looking out at a “lawn” that looked more like dunes, the merest trace of rain has things greening up already. Your landscape looks like a dreamy stage set for a production of ‘Brigadoon’.

  8. I’m always amazed at how quickly plants revive once the weather turns. Autumn is always a pretty reliable time in the garden and I’m looking forward to seeing the new garden areas!

  9. Just catching up with your post Christina, the September light is beautiful in your photographs, the Caesalpinia gilliesii without its leaves also looks exactly right and the colours refreshing, there are lots of burnt oranges around here and I much prefer the colours you have.

    • I suppose that because all of summer is about bleached hay colours and even deeper Browns, burnt orange isn’t a colour that attracts me so much in autumn although some of the flowers in the cuttings garden are orange and I like those. I love the various colours of the sedums

  10. I agree, the soft colours are gorgeous. I love the different grey foliage plants for the way they remind us where you are, they look perfect in your Mediterranean landscape. I grow lots of species of Pennisetum including villosum, you’re right they are tender in many parts of the UK and their winter foliage is not as good as fully hardy species with dark flowers like alopecuroides.

  11. I love it Christina, especially the dusky pinks and purples and the swish of the grasses. I’m with you on sedums, I think they look good almost all year round, from the emergence of the first rosettes in early spring to the russet brown of the dying flower heads. The pink flowers now are an absolute bonus.

  12. And does it happen as quickly as you suggest, as the temperature drops and the rain comes? The colours look so different, no doubt accentuated by the special sort of light we seem to experince at this time of year, and it must be such a relief after this particular summer. Have you been looking after your m-in-l?

    • Yes, it does; the first heavy rain was late August (early for us) and within about 10 days there is a very noticeable difference with many more plants flowering again after months of dormancy. My MIL has only just been transferred from hospital to rehab (most of the reasons she was in hospital so long were due to bad care) so I’ll be coming to the UK probably in October now.

  13. Oh you must really appreciate September Christina. I’m glad that I’ve read your post. I’ve grown some pennisetum villosum from seed and wasn’t sure what would happen come winter. They’re still very much on the small side so I will bring them under cover. Yours looks fabulous with the sedums. I don’t know Caesalpinia gilliesii so I’m off to find out more.

    • In some ways I think September is my favourite month; everything comes back to life and as our winters are usually quite short there is spring to look forward to; conversantly in spring when, of course, everything is flowering beautifully at the back of my mind is the thought of summer with its intense heat and no rain for several months.

  14. I love the pink and silvery blue colors in your garden! Gardens are sometimes more resilient than we may think. I know after a hot summer, give us a few days of cooler weather and refreshing rain, and my garden and its gardener perk up in no time. I am excited about your new garden plans. I look forward to seeing what you are doing.

    • Summer has taken its toll in dead plants but not as many as I feared. You are right that the with the temperatures reduced by 5 to 10° C and some serious rain everything is different.

  15. I can almost hear the garden heaving a sigh of relief as the heat reduces and the rains arrive. The combination of soft grass heads, gently coloured but stiff sedums and silvery foliage weaves a lovely September magic. Enjoy!

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