But the garden still has a surprising amount of bloom. Some of the blossoms are a bit crispy; others have a tendency to wilt. But there is bloom! Here is a brief tour.
The two Lagerstroemias, L. indica "Dynamite"...
There is the indefatigueable Russelia equisetiformis "Big Red".
Along with Russelia, I was relying on Hamelia patens to supply nectar for hummingbirds, who have, however, apparently left to spend the hot season elsewhere! The Hamelia is a wonderful plant, but it is planted in a very fast-draining part of the garden, and I am having trouble keeping enough water on it. Perhaps by next summer it will be better established and I will have amended the soil enough to keep moisture levels more even.
It is certainly the tropicals that are the source of mid-July bloom in this garden!
|Catharanthus roseus in lavender and white|
|White lantana with native chinchweed growing nearby. I normally allow some chinchweed to add a bit of yellow to the late summer garden.|
|Lantana "Denver Red" filling in below Euphorbia tirucalli "Firesticks"|
|Mirabilis jalapa (Four o'Clocks), unopened flowers|
|Cuphea ignea "Vermillionaire"|
But there are some dry country plants in bloom as well. Alyogyne huegelii is sproradically in bloom though not today. There is also Eremophila hygrophana.
And there is the native Penstemon pseudospectabilis "Coconino County". To my surprise, it is still putting out flowers, having been more or less in bloom since late spring. The foliage behind belongs to Hippeastrum "Naranja".
There are also grass flowers.
|Pennisetum setaceum "Rubrum"|
And a few roses, especially among the miniatures, such as my little creamy white one. (I think it once had a fair amount of pink to it, but that was long before the heat began!)
Crown Princess Margareta is also trying to do her bit.
Among the surprises are continuing bloom from Dianthus...
...and the reblooming iris "Clarence", with this being its second bloom.
And one of the best of all is Salvia farinacea, planted near Hamelia patens, but much more tolerant of the low water conditions. It has been in nearly continuous bloom for months.
We are still waiting our first real monsoon rains, with another chance in the forecast through this coming week. It would make such a difference! Right now the plants are dealing with the triple difficulties of high heat, very low humidity, and hot winds. Just about everyone would be happy with a good downpour here.
In the meantime, I'm pleased that planning from last summer has resulted in a much better range of flowering plants to tide over the hottest months. This is the desert garden's doldrums, much different from growing in more temperate regions. To see many other July gardens around the world, don't forget to visit May Dreams Gardens!
|Penstemon pseudospectabilis "Coconino County"|
Weather Diary: Sunny; High: 110 F (43 C)/Low: 88 F (31 C); Humidity: 12%-29%