After a month or so of no rain and unseasonably hot temperatures it finally rained yesterday refreshing a very dry and dusty garden. This morning I took the time to wander around capturing what is left of our summer garden. It’s amazing how rarely I actually pay attention to the detail in the garden, very much taking it for granted. Looking at it as a whole it looks blowsy, a little out of control and well on the way to being finished for the year. But then looking at it closely I found plenty of life, little splashes of colour and interesting shapes.
We have cut back almost all the lavender on our 100+ bushes but a few sprigs cling to life. I’m always a little sad when it’s time to do this as it means summer’s coming to an end. It also means no more gorgeously perfumed evenings when the lavender fills the air, though the actual process of cutting it releases the oil and the smell is heavenly. The trimmed bushes have their own beauty and look tidy but I do so love it when they are in bloom.
There is still a fair amount of oleander in flower and a few sprigs of ceanothus out for a second time this year. First time round in April, they were much darker in colour and the bush was groaning in flowers. Now they are pale and sparse, but pretty none the less. I imagine this must be to do with the amount of water they’ve been getting but not being a technical gardener this is just a guess. To see what the ceanothus looked like in April, click here.
Thanks to the lovely Mediterranean climate we have agaves, aloe vera, grasses and a palm tree which create some striking architectural shapes. We also grow plenty of succulents, some of which produce crazy triffid-like flowers.
The dry stone wall which holds up our lavender bank always looks lovely in the morning light. It seems to glow with warmth and makes a lovely backdrop for the few late summer flowers growing by it. Aren’t the shadows created by the witches fingers great?
Many of the flowers have finished leaving interesting seed pods, this is particularly so with some of the crazy weeds we get. The plant with pink and green berries is one such example. If anyone can identify it I’d be very happy. It’s an annual self-seeded plant which grows to about 2-2.5 metres high and birds love the fruit. Unfortunately it makes very dark staining poo which they then proceed to release on the tiles of the pool, creating nasty stains!
One plant which finally seems to have established itself this year is our lovely little bougainvillaea. It’s still only small but we have visions of it climbing over the pool railings and tumbling down in tropical splendour. Let’s hope it survives another winter!
In contrast to the delicate bougainvillaea one plant that thrives in the garden at Lou Messugo is rosemary. The bushes surrounding the door to the gîte have to be cut back severely on a regular basis or they’d take over. There’s certainly no shortage of herbs for our guests to use!
I hope you’ve enjoyed your tour of our September garden. As you can see there are no signs of autumn here yet, we still have a few weeks of summer left. What’s happening in your garden right now?