Sumptuous, Sweltering Summer

Phew, It has been HOT! Not the kind of weather to be gardening in! Leave the lawns long, water late at night and dead head with a cool glass of something as the sun sets.

Wisteria pruning, this does need doing this month, Mainly, to ensure you can still see out of your windows, if you have one climbing along the front of your house. You need to prune all of the new long growth back to 6 buds from the main stem to make it start to think about next years flowers and not just creating a climbing jungle reaching for your roof slates. It is also time to give it a high potash feed, such as tomorite or simply granular potash. This will also enable it to start thinking seriously about flower production.

Pinch the ends out of your squash!!! I have a sorry tale to tell of my squash plants this year. I only finished eating last years stored squash plants in June, this is not likely to be repeated in 2020 though as due to all the cold weather in May my squash plants have only just started growing and are yet to flower. BY now you should be getting ready to pinch the tips out of your plants to make sure they focus on ripening the fruit you have rather than producing more. I am hoping for some extremely long indian summer, til sometime in November, by which time I may have squash.

Garlic harvest, on a more positive note, look at the garlic harvest. I have pulled them a little early but some of them were starting to bolt, as you can see, by the bulbs that are starting to split open. The smaller bulbs were left overs from last year that were transplanted in April. so actually they haven’t done bad.

Kumquat, seem to be becoming an En Pointe Plant at the moment. Smaller that Orange or Lemon trees and yet still not hardy in our climate. they require quite specific handling over the winter to continue to fruit for years to come. I had never eaten one until a client very nicely sent me home with two to try. I am sure you are all far more adventurous than me, and this will be like teaching Grandma to suck eggs, so apologies, but it is a curious fruit. The skin is the prized sweet part that you eat and the flesh is the sour part to be disposed of. It was very tasty. Not sure I am up to the challenge of keeping one thriving in Derbyshire but you never know til you try.

A Cyclamen hasn’t read the rhs encyclopedia to know when to flower!

Hoeing weeds, finally weather in Britain where hoeing is going to work. Normally you hoe all the weeds and leave them uprooted on the soil allegedly to die in the sun. More often than not in this country just after you have finished Hoeing, it rains, efficiently allowing all the weeds to reroot in the soil and carry on growing. Pointless exercise. However, dry beautiful hot weather means you can turn the weeds over and leave them. THey will be dead long before you water in the evening. Bingo. Enjoy. It won’t last.

And on that note I will leave you to swelter. Remember only mad dogs and englishmen go out in the fierce midday sun. IF you are uncomfortable the plants are too. Leave them alone, including the lawn and just water with a nice g and t once its cooled down a little. Happy, if sticky, Gardening. x

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