The herbaceous border has a group of plants throwing out hot colours. Revelling in the long hot, dry days, this is peak Monarda season. Complementing the Monarda ‘Jacob Cline’ are two Crocosmia; C.masoniorum and the cultivar C. ‘Vulcan’. Looking at the stems and foliage of these herbaceous plants, growing in close competition with the Beech hedge and other plants there is a drain on the soil moisture. Selective irrigation is needed to maintain the integrity of the plant collection. Looking at the weather records for July the 100mm deep soil thermometer has recorded 20°C on several occasions. We have to go back to July 2013 for 20°C to be recorded at this depth on consecutive days and that was during a particularly hot, dry spell of weather. These long days, hot days with bright sun are reducing the soil moisture content and consequently allowing the soil temperature to rise as there is less moisture to keep it cool. A vicious circle. A timely reminder to target any watering to valuable plantings. Water in the late evening with a watering can. Avoid the use of a hose and do not “wash” your garden. Use water wisely.
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