The Slope on Tuesday 30th July

The weather is now very hot; high 30’s C during the day; last weekend it was close to 40°C in the shade! Despite all the rain and the water that must be stored deep in the ground the garden is shrivelling before my eyes.


Weigela is looking very stressed

Weigela is looking very stressed


The Perovskia is taller now, from the drive you can only just see over the top.

The Perovskia is taller now, from the drive you can only just see over the top.

Californian Poppy

Eschscholzia californica (Californian Poppy)

Californian poppies are flowering from new seedlings, the older plants are dry and need cutting to the ground; they will flower again in autumn.

One crop grows on the slope!  The fennel I showed with the Perovskia a couple of weeks ago is there for a purpose.  I collect and dry the flowers to add to roast potatoes, sausage risotto or dishes with Porcini (wild mushrooms).  I dry the cut flower heads on trays in an airy spot and then rub the dry flowers through a sieve and then into a jar.  You can buy them ready done in the local vegetable shops; but as they are very labour intensive to prepare they are very expensive (about €100 per kg). As there is a good crop this year I may prepare some in some pretty jars to give as little Christmas presents, it is always a much appreciated gift.

Fennel flowers ready to pick

Fennel flowers ready to pick

What is the weather doing in your part of the world?  Are you having rain or thunder storms, hail or wind or is it pleasantly warm or even too hot to bear.

End of Month View June

I had thought in the end of May View, that the slope wouldn’t change very much so I would have to choose another area of the garden; I was wrong, Wild Verbascums blown into the garden from the surrounding fields have changed the way it looks altogether.

Another aspect I hadn’t taken into account was that plants I don’t count as being on the slope really, above the line of the Holm Oak bushes, have grown to such an extent that they have become the background to the slope – this is especially true of the large orange Knifophia, truly Red Hot Pokers!

From the top of the slope looking along towards the drive

In the foreground of the above image you can just see a Salvia Turkestanica which seeded from the huge one I had 2 years ago (I’m relieved this one is not so large as they are so awful to remove because of the ghastly smell –I noticed before it doesn’t start to smell until it has flowers, weird!

Looking up the slope with the amazing Solanum jasminoides that flowers for ever

From midway up the drive looking down

There is Perovskia in this border too!

Other things I’d quickly like to share with you: the blue of the Perovskia!

If you would like to read more about what’s happening in other gardens all over the world visit Helen at The Patient Gardener.  Once again a big thank you to Helen for hosting this meme for us.

From next month I’m thinking of writing about the progress of individual beds.  Listing all the plants they contain and highlighting changes I’ve made and why (if there is a reason).  If I do this I’ll begin with the Small Island, just because I’m so pleased with the way it looks this year

Part of the Small Island

This morning I harvested all the garlic and the white onions that had bent over (on their own, I don’t believe you should bend them forcefully)

Just over half of the white onions

You may have noticed fennel growing by the edge of the drive, I harvest the flowers, dry them put them into jars and use this intensely flavoured condiment when cooking roast potatoes, sausage risotto or Porcini (ceps).

Fennel, picked this morning

Picked last week, dried and awaiting the tedious job of piutting just the yellow flowers into a jar. Worth its weight in gold

As I walking past the lavender I saw this strange looking bug, I don’t know what it is or if it does any damage, it was alone so I doubt it will do much damage anyway.

Any ideas as to what it is?

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My Hesperides Garden.