Upper Green in summer

Borders and Roses

The garden took off in the wet June and now my borders are lush and virtually confluent so that there is (almost) no need to weed. A “chelsea chop” at the end of May (great for the compost heap) has helped to control the height of sedums, heleniums and leucanthemum  (Shasta daisy). The sedums would be shorter, sturdier and more effective if they were growing on less rich soil. I got the plant supports in place just in the nick of time so that now the taller plants are gently controlled but are not too regimented- and, best of all, the supports are no longer visible. The michaelmas daisies are going to be magnificent in another month or so-the wet spring has really suited them. Putting in these supports each year is a time-consuming job which must be done before the plants are too tall ideally in mid-May here. I would love my plants to grow through artistically woven hazel or birch prunings, but lack the prunings. I have a large hazel tree- perhaps I should do some coppicing?

The roses have been wonderful although the endless rain in June did damage many of the flowers. The blooms of the climber, “Schoolgirl” , which is sheltered by the eaves of the thatch, tends to escape damage. The heavy clusters of flower on the hybrid musk, “Buff Beauty” were not so lucky.

My favourite geranium, the exquisite Geranium pratense ‘Plenum Violaceum’, is particularly magnificent. The damp spring has encouraged it to reach new heights and the button-hole sized, double violet blue flowers are stunning. I acquired  Geranium pratense ‘Plenum Album’ last year and it is looking good, but is not as lovely as the violet form.

The clematis “Star of India”, which I had to move a couple of years ago, is flowering well. The large purple flowers are  mixed in with straw-coloured  Stipa gigantia. The hot bed is coming into its own with heleniums beginning to open.There is a lot to look forward to.

Star of India