Blog: A contrary month in every way!
June has been a month of sharp contrasts – cloudy, misty and humid for more than a week at the beginning, followed by a week of extreme heat and thunderstorms. As I write, there are up to 50mph gusts of wind and I’ve had to rush out and lie my tall tropicals in pots flat before they snap.
As usual, the weather has helped and hindered different plants. June is an odd month here – we often have a cool spell of dull weather, clouds drifting inland from the North Sea, hampering the growth of tender varieties. One thing’s for sure – plants are going to have to cope with extremes of every sort!
Thanks to Vanessa Sundin again for contributing some of her pictures!
June is the first month of the rose season and thanks to the warm spring, they’ve come on in leaps and bounds (no pictures of them battered to bits after the torrential rain and wind of the weekend, you notice!)
Cream – a colour (if you can call it that) which always reminds me of June. It’s the perennials like Pyracantha and Rodgersia which come to the fore, along with the latter’s lush foliage. It’s the time of purples and blues, with perennial geraniums (Rozanne and Purple Haze), foxgloves and Aquilegia.
This is the time they all end up outdoors for their summer holidays – bananas, ginger and Coleus taking up residence in the tropical bed, along with two new Phormiums, Platt’s Black and Sundowner. The Agapanthus and Pelargoniums (geraniums) which went out last month are now flowering well.
Another ‘summer holiday’ group, the succulents have taken up residence on the garage roof and wall – Agave variegata, Aloes, Echeverias and Sempervivums. The massive Aloe vera and its ‘skirt’ of a single Echeveria is in full flower, still in the greenhouse.
The everbearing strawberries are giving a magnificent crop and we’re expecting loads of apricots. Tomatillo Purplino went out in their ehlo self-watering Veggie Wall, plus a couple in with the courgettes.
Under glass, the conservatory’s tomatoes (Apero, Rosella, Yellow Pear Shaped and Maskotka) are doing well with their first fruits. Test variety Reisetomate is behind the others but is flowering now.
All the overwintered chillies (Biquino Red, Razzamatazz and Trinidad Moruga Scorpion) have formed their first fruits. New chilli Palivec is yet to form flowers.
In the greenhouse, the tomatoes have finally decided to grow, although the cucamelons are looking sickly…