There’s really no need to check the calendar. It suddenly feels like going to the beach and that can only mean one thing. It’s July. I’m inclined to think that July is a state of mind more than a month and might not even have it’s own color. For one thing, ALL of the colors are out now, blazing away despite the heat and the glare. I actually took these shots of rainbow colors in the gardens back on the 1st, when July still thought it was June and the light was just right.
July might be one of the most difficult stages for gardeners weather-wise but at least we can begin to feel like we’re catching up. We’re close to being finished with planting (are you done yet?) just in time to start watering (there’s no appreciable rain in the past or forecast) and maybe deadhead a bit. As I did my turn with the hose in the Display Garden yesterday, I found myself very impressed with our newest perennials. I watered some of them because they were newly planted this April but they all looked at me as if why bother?! They seem to be settled in and already loving the dry conditions. But then in our new pollinators’ bed we did plant with toughness (as well as wasps and hummingbirds) in mind. Things like anise hyssop, beebalm and penstemon say “bththththtttpptt ” to rain and “bring it on!” to the sun and heat (if not the humidity).
But gardeners need respite from all of that and today, after a short and intense planting session, we found some dapple behind the summerhouse and took the opportunity to tackle some of the weeds there. The Rockettes untangled foamflower, creeping raspberry and bleeding heart from a mass of chickweed, goutweed (Aegopodium) and jewelweed and mulched the whole area with a new layer of shredded leaves. The rainless heat will keep the weeds from growing back tomorrow and that spot, with newly opened (almost finished) paths in and out, is now a lovely shady destination.
I’m not quite sure what happened to June but I realize I’m remiss in some of my updates and will use July to catch you all up. We hope to hear in the next couple of days how Ginkgo Jr. is doing. I have a lot to report about the vegetable garden this year and our partnership with the East Bay Food Pantry. I’ve also been dying to crow about our gratifyingly busy pollinator beds in the Display Garden, and hope to be able to share some more exciting proposals for changes brought up in the master plan process too.
Do you feel like you’ll finally be able catch up in July too? (Or do you just feel like going to the beach?)