Thursday 5 February 2009

My Heat Struck Garden

Being in a heat wave and draught means that my garden isnt looking as lush as I wish it was. I've had to plant draught hardy blooms, which aren't as lovely to look at, but at least they stop the garden looking totally barren.

Due to water restrictions, the plants have pretty much been left to their own devices. I've newspapered and mulched, some have thrived, some have died. The boring plants seem to survive. I have a creeping rose bush which yearly gives out masses of small scented blooms and although it's sunburnt and struggling, it always comes back good. I'm always suprised at the fight for life that roses manage, it's a bit of hope in a dry garden where you find yourself yearing for beauty.

My fern leaves are crisp brown wafts that break off in the wind and what I think was once a rather beautiful shrub ( I can't remember, its been so long) is now just dried twigs.

I yearn to sit in a garden brimming over with the flowers I have planted in the past: the many varied roses, from carpet hedges to elegant long stemmed blooms that loved a severe dead heading and pruning any time of year, the canterbury bells, the bavardia, the geranium, the poppy, the white and pink hydrangia, the 5 lots of lavendar from white to violet...I can see and smell them already....

I admire the local gardeners who have altered their former green European gardens and worked tirelessly to re-create Australian gardens. Personally, I love succulents and just a few cactuses here and there, but I'm not inspired enough to change my whole idea about what a garden is.

Realistically, the only plants that can truly survive in this climate are natives, and whilst people some love them, they all look like boring dried out tuffs of grass to me, and I'm not afraid to say so.

Frankly, it's too hot to go outside, or sit outside. I think twice about walking from my front door to the car when I want to go somewhere. Sometimes it's just not worth the heat stress. I think the only lush garden I'll be enjoying this summer is a stencilled one.


  1. I live in Perth and I know just what you mean. Lush cottage gardens are almost impossible with the water restrictions. Will have to be lush fabrics instead... hope it cools off soon for you!

  2. I totally agree with you Esther, sometimes the hot weather and gardens just do not go well together - here in the states, I am in Arkansas and sometimes we have several weeks or longer where the temperature hovers over 100 and when that happens you either keep trying to water the plants or just give up!

  3. Gardening in Australian conditions can certainly Break One's Heart & yet there is the moment one happens upon that most gorgeous bloom not remembered & your heart beats once more... I guess Gardening is just in the blood Esther & back to the Nurseries we go...


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