Trying to trick the rain

Aargh! There's supposed to be rain coming, they said. They are often right, they are often wrong. We need rain. So I'm going to play one of the oldest gardening tricks I know - put on the watering hoses, just to give that forecast rain a little tickle up.

 Photograph taken in autumn - so the colour is much more saturated.
Possibly Ellen Rose

Today my little hoses (plus buckets of water) are going on the Allotment Garden's roses. I will water all day. Then it's bound to start raining, right? Late bloomers like Graham Thomas and Mrs John Oakley look gorgeous, and I think I've rediscovered the David Austin English rose called Ellen. It was a birthday present years ago, and I know I've shifted it. Somewhere.

 Spiky plants are a Phormium and Anemanthele grasses.
The Island Bed in Autumn

For the last three days I've been doing incredibly responsible (and incredibly boring) gardening. The sort of gardening that sees one stop in ones trundling tracks and deal to the visible problem, then and there. Yesterday, wandering past the Island Bed, I noticed that parts of the pretty striped Phormium were reverting to the species. In a flash I sprung into action with the sharpest kitchen bread knife (the perfect tool). Then I stayed put to weed, dead-headed dahlias, and trim Delphiniums. The soil is awfully dusty and dry.

Great news for Camellias!

Peeped underneath the Anemanthele grasses - great news! A little prostrate Camellia with shiny green leaves is still alive underneath the huge grasses. And it retains its label.

 Part of the Glass-House Garden, with a colouring Oak tree in the background.
Cleaning Up

On to the Shrubbery

Then I moved on to the Shrubbery, noticing that the feature stone wall was invisible, covered in excess Erigeron. Trimmed it happily. Found a head-high and happy Maple tree which has survived this rather unforgiving location. Noticed that the rose Corylus has suckered everywhere, its leaves colouring like flames for autumn.

The day before yesterday I trimmed the Glass-House Garden. This took ages - the Ligularias had spread throughout this area, and lots of variegated elm suckers were thriving. The Glass-House Garden used to be full of lovely Lupins, but I can always plant new ones - for me they are short-lived perennials.

And now today - the Allotment Garden. In between fetching buckets of water and shifting hoses I trimmed all the yellow Euphorbias and tidied along the stone wall. I bucketed lots of water on the boundary Pittosporums.

 All cleaned up.

I crawled bravely underneath the boundary roses to weed, digging out some red hot pokers hiding underneath the Rambling Rector (a rather robust rambler, ouch). Am popping a flowery photograph of him below, reminding myself how much I adore him in mid-summer. Ouch again.

 In the Allotment Garden.
Rambling Rector Rose

Aren't I a wonderful waterer? My garden thinks so. Almost as good as the real thing. But alas - my watering trick didn't work. No rain. Not even one drizzly droplet.