|The top-heavy plants look somewhat ungainly in the backyard border. I have to use supports to keep them from falling over. The plants have as many as 6 stems, each of which can have a dozen or more flowers.|
The newer Eustoma I put in as plugs in spring didn't fare quite as well in the heat as the pale pink varieties planted last year but they're providing spots of color here and there.
|Clockwise from the left: The pale pink Eustoma planted last year (the 'Echo Pink' and 'Mariachi Pink' cultivars appear identical), a deeper pink plug planted this year, an unnamed blue form, a yellow form, and a green form|
A few other plants have managed to put on a good show, albeit on a smaller scale.
|Abelia x grandiflora is in full bloom|
|With regular deadheading, Achillea 'Moonshine' continues to produce new blooms, although not in the same abundance as the 2 prior months|
|Unlike the Anigozanthos (kangaroo paws) in the background, this one in the foreground withstood the heat, perhaps helped by the shade it receives in late afternoon|
|Gomphrena decumbens 'Itsy Bitsy' shows no signs it even noticed the heat|
And there are a few plants I can count on to bloom continuously from spring through fall (and beyond in some cases).
|These include, clockwise from the upper left: Coleonema pulchellum 'Sunset Gold', Cuphea ignea 'Starfire Pink', Gaura lindheimeri, and Grevillea 'Superb'|
|The Gazanias keep flowering too. From the left: G. 'Strawberry Shortcake'. 'Sunbather Otomi', White Flame' and 'Yellow Flame'.|
Finding other blooms beyond those requires a scavenger hunt. I looked high and low.
|The Magnolia grandiflora continues to produce a steady supply of blooms but they're best viewed from a distance. I can get a close-up of the flowers only when blooms open on the lower branches.|
|Heteromeles arbutifolia (aka Toyon), designated the official native plant of Los Angeles County, is also in full bloom but most of the flowers are well beyond my reach|
|Not to be missed, the creeping thyme (Thymus serphyllum 'Minus') planted between and around the flagstones throughout the backyard is blooming, to the delight of the bees who manage to ignore me as I tromp through the area|
The blooms that dominated by garden last month are largely done.
|There are just a very few Agapanthus and Hemerocallis 'Sammy Russell' in bloom|
There were a few surprises.
|Alstroemeria 'Claire' (left), which I thought was a goner after the heatwave, has produced some new flowers and Anagallis 'Wildcat Mandarin', which I cut back hard in early June just before the heatwave, has produced another burst of flowers|
|My latest plant crush, Phylica pubescens, has thrived in a pot on the back patio, although 2 plants in the back border were fried beyond recognition and show no signs of coming back|
Beyond these, there was just a little of this and a little of that.
I'm irrigating more. Our water service provider allocates us a monthly water budget equal to 64 percent of the water used in 2013. Anything that isn't used in a given month becomes part of the total water balance I have to draw on. As my rainwater collection is gone, I've begin drawing against the savings I've accumulated. If I'm lucky that may give me flowers to show in August. In the meantime, visit Carol at May Dreams Gardens, the host of Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day, to see what's blooming elsewhere in the world this month.
All material © 2012-2016 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party