Tropical showers in June bring a kaleidoscope of colour and an abundance of growth.

This wet week in June, we’ve seen thundery showers and tropical growing conditions. Taking a break from the garden, I’ve been making new friends.

Our girls are growing fast, the lambs are almost 8 weeks old and yet they still remember who helped introduce them into the World.

Just a week after protecting our juicy crop with bird netting and putting our Strawberries to bed with a layer of straw, we are already harvesting our first red fruits.

Considering the heavy rain and wet few weeks of June the roses are looking stunning. This year in an attempt to reduce the amount of chemicals we use I have been treating our roses with Compost tea.

Lady of Shallot bred by David Austin is a stunning Apricot-yellow rose that opens into a peachy golden chalice. Treating with a combination of compost tea, canola oil, washing up liquid and molasses has enabled us to control pests and disease whilst also foliar feeding our precious roses.

Even the weather cannot dampen the vibrancy of colour in the garden. Summer may be a washout but the garden is a painters palette of delight.

Cotinus coggygria ‘Royal Purple’ and Rose ‘Ebb Tide’ a winning combination of heavily scented rosette of purple blooms against the matt Amethyst foliage of the purple smoke bush.

Crambe cordifolia is too large for most gardens with its large glossy green leaves and clouds of inter-linked tiny white baby breath flowers.

Humid tropics and heavy rain has forced a huge growth spurt on all perennials. A rush to stake, support and dead head border perennials meant this week has been a real challenge.

Lush Astrantia maxima ‘Rosea’ and Amsonia hubrichtii interspersed with Geum ‘Mrs Bradshaw’ and flowering mounds of Stipa gigantea.

Delphinium ‘Blue Tit’ has benefited from the increased rainfall in June. The downside of all this wet weather in June is that the flowers don’t last nearly as long as they would during a dry spell.

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We tried a new range of sweet pea this year from Thompson and Morgan this beauty is ‘Blue Velvet’  and already popular with my Twitter followers.

Clematis ‘Carnaby’ love this wet June, we have more flowers, abundant growth and healthier plants than the same time last year.

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An abundance of bugs and beetles brought on by the moist mild weather is keep us gardeners on our toes. Cultural awareness steers us away from toxic chemicals and back to the hands on approach to pest and disease control. If you are struggling to keep persistent pests and disease at bay in your own garden you may find my natural control techniques useful.

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About Head Gardener 334 Articles
Award winning, 40 something year old professional plantsman and horticulturalist with National Trust, private parks and estate management background. My vast plant knowledge and hands on techinical experience, afforded me the opportunity to work in various horticultural landscapes, in the UK, USA & Eastern Europe. Having worked in both garden retail & the design service industry gave me the practical diversity and managerial skill set, required for running a large prestigious gardens and stately homes. I strongly believe knowledge is to be shared and have worked closely with people and staff of all ages and abilities keen to develop their passion for gardening, including groups of children, special needs and adults. I have hosted guided walks, talks and tours for those keen to learn about cultivated and wild plants, garden development, history and design. As an member of the NNCPG and National Trust, I am actively involved in the preservation of several important plant collections both in public and private gardens throughout the UK. “It’s a beautiful thing when a career and a passion grow together, in a garden it’s paradise” Follow @IGrowHort on GardenTags. Stephen is passionate about gardening as Head Gardener with a team of ten staff he manages a prestigious Cheshire country estate of 55 acres, inc wild flower meadows, woodland, organic kitchen and formal gardens. Follow Stephen today”

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