End of Month View: August 2014

I have realised that I missed out the End of Month View for July, but the garden was looking particularly dry and probably not very photogenic which is perhaps why it didn’t get published.

In contrast to what has been a really good summer, August saw an autumnal dip in temperatures and a lot of rain.   I went into hospital on the 13 August for a further operation and was unable to mow the lawn before I went in because of the rain.   Since then I have not been able to give the garden the much needed attention it now requires and it is looking neglected.   The grass is far too long, ankle deep in some places, and due to stomach surgery I can’t, as yet, use the mower so it will continue to grow until next weekend when a friend has kindly offered to mow the lawn for me.

Some of the taller plants, such as the cosmos badly need staking as they have flopped over the smaller plants.  I am really pleased with this particular variety of Cosmos, called Sea Shells, which I grew from seed.  Some were pink, but the white ones seems to have taken over.

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I have been very selective with my photos this month to give the impression that the garden is still full of flowers, which strictly speaking is not really the case.   There is an abundance of greenery and a few patches of colour.  The Echinacea and Rudbekia have been devoured by the slugs and snails and are, sadly, no longer to be seen, so no wonderful late summer orange shades.

Tucked away just behind the Cosmos I found a very pretty white Scabious which I grew from seed last year and survived the winter.

DSC_0059 (1024x683)There are a few plants I grew from seed this year; one is a Cleome.  I have two plants which survived the ravages of the snails and has flowered continuously for the last few months, with more flowers to come.

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Another is a Verbena which, although it has struggled, has added some bright colour on the border edge.  Unlike its relative Bonariensis this variety only grows to about 8″ and comes in a number of colours ranging from deep purple through to pink.

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I was given a Gaura last year which I thought I had lost but I found it growing quite happily in the south facing border.   It must have flowered well in the last month and not being in the garden I missed it, There are only a few flowers left on it but I was pleased to see it.  I am inclined to dig it up before it gets cold, and nurture it in the greenhouse over the winter to give it the chance to establish in size before putting it out in the garden next year.

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The roses are in their second flush and looking good with the white Japanese Anemones behind them.

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It has been a fabulous year for raspberries, and I am not sure if it is just the good weather or if it was partially down to the good helping of  fish blood and bone that I gave them in the spring.   They have fruited since July, and are the size of strawberries and incredibly sweet.  I have given them away to neighbours, have bags of them in the freezer and my grandchildren helped themselves to large portions last weekend.   Still they continue to produce fruit.

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The ‘Moneymaker’ tomatoes are very slow to ripen.  I have had a good number of them, along with the slugs, but there is a branch with tomatoes the size of small apples that seem loathe to turn red.  I have removed most of the leaves now with the hope that they will concentrate on what they are supposed to do.

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The one plant I love to see turn pink at this time of the year is the Sedum.  Slowly their flower heads are changing to a rose colour and will, eventually, become turn to a lovely dark burgundy shade during the winter.

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Finally, the side patio.   Here it has become a bit of a jungle and everything is very overgrown.  With the promise of good weather this coming week I will have to take the secateurs to several of the plants, including the passion flower and the Clematis “Jouiniana Praecox,” which is looking good but taken over most of the patio wall between me and my neighbour.

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As always a big thank you to Helen from The Patient Gardener for hosting this monthly meme.  Visit her blog to see what is happening in her lovely and interesting garden as well as then hopping across to other gardens who have contributed to this month’s End of Month View.

10 thoughts on “End of Month View: August 2014

  1. Slugs and snails have run amok here too this year. Echinacea completely decimated, you are not alone. I love the Cosmos ‘seashells’, I shall have to try that.
    Glad to hear you are recovering well. Take care.

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  2. Hi Ronnie – I have found that after surgery your eyes and mind see things that need doing in the garden but your body unwilling. Just 5 minutes gives satisfaction! Patients need patience!!!!!! spring here in Auckland, NZ so lots of wind and rain. The previous weekend was sunny, blue and no wind – gorgeous. House sat for no 5 daughter and family while they went to Mt Ruapehu for a snow weekend. gorgeous there also! Then rain, strong easterlies off the sea, cloud – yuk Floods up north..I actually had to water some pots when I fed with worm weeze. The rain has brought out the snails I see so will have to go out with my torch! Quite a few bulbs out, pick lachenalia etc so pretty littly surprises! A tropical garden so these little surprises I have brought into it soften it.

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    1. You are so right about my eyes and mind seeing things but my body being unwilling! So frustrating. Fancy you going into spring whilst here we are going into autumn. I like your newsy comments, thank you.

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  3. I’m glad to hear that you are rocovering from your “op”, don’t try to do too much too soon, the garden will wait.
    I think you have solved a problem about a clematis I saw yesterday at East Lambrook Manor, it looked so like yours, so beautiful!
    We don’t have many plants flowering all together, they are all spread round the garden, so they don’t create an impact. I had hoped that one of my borders would but plants haven’t behaved as I’d hoped, more work next year!

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  4. Sorry to hear about the op, but glad you are on the mend. And thank you for the round-up. It is lovely to see what is going on in other gardens. That cosmos is gorgeous, they do seem to be tough little plants, mine are still busily flowering. Slugs and snails appear to have been in heaven this year – my hosta which usually escapes their attention (it is in a pot) has been decimated – more holes than a sieve! But the pelargoniums and fuchsias have been prolific.

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  5. Hi Ronnie

    I hope you are feeling better and are mending well? TBH don’t feel bad about being unable to cut your grass. I haven’t managed to cut our front for at least a month now because of the rain. The front is north so I need a good few days of sun for it to dry out enough to mow and so far, it isn’t been possible. Today thankfully my brother cut the back garden – which was last mown around 2/3 weeks ago. So honestly, take your time; the plants will still be there when you’re feeling better.

    Oooh, I like your Clematis and of course it’s nice to have something blooming so profusely at this time of year… yet another plant to go on my must have list.
    Lovely Cosmos too, you’ve done well to get them blooming early from seed. I always had really poor luck and they’d keep me waiting until October before flowering. So I’ve given up growing from seed for the past few years and have bought them in instead.

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    1. Hi Liz…yes thanks I’m well on the mend and finding having to be careful not to burst stitches a bit frustrating. Cosmos appear to be the one plant that thrives in this garden, slugs and snails don’t go near them.

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  6. I love the approach of only showing a few flowers to give the impression you have flowery garden! Someone at my garden club has terrible problems with snails and slugs and she has found a rudbeckia which has hairy leaves and the slugs won’t eat it. She has given up on echineau!

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