How did it get to be half way through the year? Such a difficult six months weatherwise…..too wet, too cold, to hot, too dry then too wet again. It has made gardening a bit of a challenge. But I grudgingly admit that most plants are positively thriving, the blossom was brilliant and now the roses are looking splendid. The height of many plants is quite staggering, it is all looking very lush and green. even the garlic is taller and stronger than last year.

Trying to keep up with the weed removal has not been easy (maybe it never is) and I must do some shrub pruning before they all get too intimate with each other. I’m still not sure if one of my favourite plants – Salvia uliginosa – has survived the winter. It’s always late to appear but has usually shown itself by now. I do have many new plants so will get some in during the next few days so we will have a good display of slender stems with blue flowers in late summer.

It’s always a tricky thing to second guess what plants people will buy each year. This year the trend has been for ferns and hostas. The fashion for hostas fluctuates, some years almost everyone shuns them. Also notable is that shrubs are very popular. Maybe people want more structure or more easier to maintain plants. Always popular are the alpines especially the sempervivums, they definitely appeal to young and old alike. They are so easy to keep as long as they don’t get waterlogged in the winter.

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