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Sunday, September 19, 2010

The parched garden

One of my favorite classic movies is "Auntie Mame" and when looking at the garden this time of year, I always think of the scene where Brian O'Bannion, the ghostwriter hired to write Mame's memoirs, presents her with "a slim volume of his poetry entitled "The Parched Garden". I think it is funny but our actual garden is no laughing matter. I can't remember the last time we received any significant rainfall and although I'm trying to keep everything watered as best as I can, the water from the hydrant is no match for actual rainwater. 

Some plants do better than others in these dire conditions. The following is one that doesn't - a paniculata hydrangea. It is planted in an extremely dry and poor area anyway. It is a disgusting and disheartening photo.



I am very concerned about the following shrub, one that I searched high and low for. It is a tea viburnum (Viburnum setigerum) and has a gorgeous display of red berries in the fall. It is located in the dry shade area behind the garage, an area that could be called "the death trap". Only the exceptionally tough will survive here. I've been watering this shrub often but the leaves do not seem to be responding. If it survives, I am going to relocate it.



Hosta looks like it is really suffering but I know that it is tough and should be okay. This area was just watered three days ago.



This red buckeye tree (Aesculus pavia) would probably be happier in shady woods than in a sunny border. I often regret planting it because of the seedlings. It is lovely in the spring when it blooms.



Sad, sad phlox -



Today it is 97 degrees and it is September 19th! The last I heard, there isn't a good chance of rain in the near future. The weather forecast is too depressing to watch and the weather people really irk me at times. Last week, a local forecaster said that a band of showers were headed this way and would UNFORTUNATELY interfere with the football games. I sent him an ugly e-mail. It turned out the showers vanished before they reach us. I guess at least the football fans were happy! :(


 

Text and photos by Phillip Oliver, Dirt Therapy

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