African Garden + [winter]

Suddenly Summer

Time to change from these

to these.

Last week I turned off the heat. On May 27th, the high was 50F. Yesterday it shot up to the upper 80s with high humidity. This morning the low was in the 70s and the current heat index is 90 degrees. Welcome to Chicago, where the seasons change abruptly and dramatically. The rain that has been pounding downstate (check out Prairie Rose and Dragonfly Corner) and western Illinois has skipped around us and all we've had is wind and a couple of drops. I don't like hot weather. I'm the product of a couple of thousand years of life in a temperate climate where it rarely snowed and never got hot. Recognizing my limitations, I tend to retreat to the AC in this type of weather. My all-day gardening sessions will be few and far between until September. Heavy digging and major planting will also have to wait for the return of cooler weather. Okay, that's enough self-indulgent whining. I can hear the groans coming from the Austin gardeners from here.

And now for the garden: the Clematises (Clematii? Clematis?) have started blooming. The first is also blooming for the first time, 'Natascha' (not to be confused with Clematis 'Natacha').

I planted this two years ago and it was worth the wait. It is loaded with buds.
I transplanted 'Asao' last autumn.

Although it only has one bloom, I'm just happy it survived the winter. I expect much better from it next year. Also making its debut this year is 'Crystal Fountain.'

(Continued from June 6, 2008.) This morning Clematis 'Silver Moon' started opening.

This captures the color very well. This is the best established of my Clematis. Last year it had 27 blooms. It looks like it should perform just as well this year. It'll look even better now I've gotten it a trellis.

Well, due to technical difficulties, we're out of time. More from the June garden will have to wait for another post. Stayed tuned for the Pink Peony Mystery and All My Aquilegias.