I've spent as much or more time dressing up the exterior of the lath house as I've done cultivating the plants I housed inside of it. Interestingly enough, without exception, the exterior plants were entirely unscathed by the last Friday's 110F temperature and dry winds, perhaps because, like the plants inside the lath house, they get watered more frequently than the rest of the garden.
|I replanted the window boxes with summer-hardy plants: yellow Osteospermum, purple Calibrachoa, blue Scabiosa, and white Scaevola|
Now, let me show you the interior. Keep in mind that these photos were taken before the heatwave. Some of the plants shown here no longer look nearly as good.
|A cast iron cat I've had longer than I can remember guards the door (and keeps the wind from blowing it open)|
|This is the view from the open doorway looking west|
|This shot was also taken from the doorway, scanning to the left|
|And this is the view looking roughly southeast|
Even before the heatwave struck, I'd concluded that some of the plants in the interior need bigger pots. The plants in small pots dried out too fast and some, like the fuchsias, clearly need more root space. The strong, dry winds that accompanied the heatwave showed me that shade and ample water aren't sufficient to support every shade plant. The begonias, especially those grown primarily for their foliage, suffered badly. I may have to either give up on them or find them space with better wind protection. The damage to my orchids surprised me. I thought the laurel hedge behind the lath house would offer them extra protection but the orchids on the top shelf were burned and badly withered so that exposure definitely doesn't fit the bill. The Fatsia lost half its lower leaves but whether that was a response to the wind or the heat alone I don't know.
Heat or not, I've enjoyed puttering in and around my lath house. The views from inside are nice too.
|View from the doorway looking up toward the house|
|View from the window on the north side looking toward the driveway|
|View from the other window looking east|
As the heat fades a bit, I'll be back at work in the lath house, repotting orchids and fuchsias. I expect my plant collection will continue to evolve as I discover what shade plants I can and can't grow there.
Enjoy your weekend!
All material © 2012-2018 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party