The Green Drought…3rd time lucky ( I hope)

Computers and I are not very compatible. This is my 3rd attempt at this blog, the last 2 were eaten by the computer when I asked it to publish. I have very poor internet here and it turns itself off often…if I press something when the internet has disconnected, …gone…and it might just as well happen when I ask it to save draft if its not in the mood, so there you go. This is my third and final attempt and if it happens again I officially give this lark up!

So…the Green Drought…not a widely known term, but a self explanatory phenomenon . Summer is over, Autumn is here, except no Autumn rains. A few feeble attempts are enough to set the grass and weeds feebly growing, and the shorter and comparatively cooler days and nights allow the feeble sprouts to stay alive. Hence we have rock hard, bone dry soil with a fine cover of green to trick passers by.

At least in these conditions watering works well, so I can plant things once the site has been flooded so I can get the spade in to dig the hole and remove weeds which are welded into the rock ! fill the hole with water, insert pot bound plant which has been waiting in the nursery too long, cover surrounding area with thick layer of mulch and whammo…autumn colour has arrived. So that’s what I’ve been doing a bit of every day, filling in gaps and applying mulch to stop the weeds coming back. It’s hard yakka though, so I can only manage a small area every day.

In between I’m continuing to make lots of rose and perennial cuttings and also potting up some kind ones that took for me in the summer.

In other news, we’re planning an open day on Sunday April 28th. Garden and Nursery will surely be full of happiness and autumn rain by then. We have lots of interesting new perennials on offer, including a great selection of Salvia, which have certainly earned their keep in the garden during this exceptionally hot, dry summer.


April flowers from The David Austin collection

Autumn amongst the roses is surely my favourite season. Of course we must make do with the repeat flowerers, as the magnificence of the True Old Fashioneds is a Spring only thing, but the Autumn flush is much less hectic and the roses are slowing down and really concentrating on their blooms, so it’s all about quality, not quantity. Of all the species in the garden which coped with the dry summer, the roses certainly came out on top. Autumn is a great time to get plants in the ground, for the next couple of months they’ll be going for it and will be well established by the time winter sets in. So get planting (you may need to get buying first) and make sure you save time to admire the beautiful autumn blooms.