July in your garden

Colour for July

Achillea

In the wild you would know this plant as yarrow, which is white. The cultivated form has a much wider range of colours from yellow to pink and red. Achillea Petra has dark red flowers while Achillea moonshine is yellow and Walther Funcke is orange. There are lots more to choose from, but this will get you started

Agapanthus

The temperature is now high enough for Agapanthus so you will see the showy display of blue, white and bi-colour plants. They are mostly perennial, so they withdraw into their rhizome roots in the winter and reappear next year. There are a few like “Twister” which are hardy and produce flowers in the winter months.

Clematis

The summer Clematis has now taken over from the Spring version of Montana. It is available in dainty and also saucer sized blooms. Each to their own taste, but the selection is almost endless. Ice blue is as its name suggests, but very close to white, Parisienne has large violet-blue blooms. Purperea Plena has dusky purple double blooms.

Hemerocalis

We more commonly known this as a Day lily even though they are not really a lily. They come with single, double or even triple-coloured blooms. The flowers of some are edible.

Dahlias

These plants make you wonder at the flower world as their unbelievable regular construction would be hard to replicate with a computer. They come in a range of designs which are self-explanatory – Anemone, Ball, Cactus, Fimbriated, Peony, Pom pom, and Waterlily, These make excellent cut flowers with a wide range of shapes, sizes and colourways of both the flower and the foliage.. “Bishop of Llandaff” has striking coppery foliage which contrasts well with its bright red flowers

Roses

Roses had their first flush in June, so make sure you are diligent with dead heading to get the best from their next showing. Just be a little careful not to dead head the ones like Rubra that will produce large rose hips later on.

Hardy Fuchsias

Long-lasting and fabulous. Plants. Fuchsias give the garden a long display of blooms through summer and into early autumn. Fuchsia genii have the added advantage of having rich golden foliage which accentuates its beautiful cerise and violet flowers. If you plant Fuchsia genii near a dark foliaged plant such as Heuchera “Plum Pudding” it makes it looks dramatic. The name is also familiar to us through fashion “French Fuchsia” and computer ink “Magenta”.

Buddleja

This robust shrub is one of the all-time butterfly and bee attractors. It is rich in nectar and has fragrant honey scented flowers. Not surprisingly this has the better-known nickname of a “Butterfly bush”.

Elderflower

Found mostly in hedgerows but in its cultivated form we know it as Sambucus. This is a useful shrub as it will grow in a shady spot. Sambucus nigra “Black Lace” has feathery purple foliage and produces panicles of clear pink flowers. These flowers go on to form purply-black berries. It is best to cut back to 60cms – 90cms (2’ to 3’) in very early spring to the nearest bud.

Escallonia

“Gold Ellen” has rich gold foliage which contrasts really well with its clusters of fragrant fuchsia flowers. This is a great plant for attracting the bees.

JOBS FOR JULY

Keep an eye out for powdery mildew on Roses, Honeysuckle, Dahlias, etc.

Prune fruited stems of summer raspberries to ground level

Remember to keep dead-heading bedding plants and roses

Prune box hedges and topiary

Clip fast-growing hedges such as leylandii and privet to keep them in good condition

Continue to deadhead perennials and bedding to promote flowering

During any period of drought, set your lawn mower blades higher

Apply summer feed and weed to lawn – weeds in lawns are growing at full pace and this is the best time to treat them.

Liquid feed hanging baskets and containers as in summer their food supply will diminish from the compost they were originally planted in

Dead head roses and bedding plants to keep them flowering

Divide bearded Iris (Iris germanica) after flowering.

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