Surviving the deluge, again


Hopefully, plants have been properly placed to withstand the week’s deluges. All survived our very rainy late spring, so I don’t expect problems, but several additions were made in recent weeks, so we’ll see. How tolerant one or the other is to constant dampness will be seen over weeks to follow.

Joe Pye weed thrives in saturated and dry ground, though nothing is dry around here today.

The problem area at the lower end of the rear garden was constantly wet a year ago, but considerable digging was done to channel runoff in late winter when planting beds were expanded. So far, so good, but inches of rain falling each day can drench even well drained areas.

A few weeks ago, I was concerned by the transition from the damp and mild spring, to hot and dry, but of course that’s long forgotten. Today, I watch tall maples and tulip poplars sway in another storm, and hope that none come crashing down.

One gordlinia in damp soil failed a year ago, but another in drier soil has grown into a shrubby, small tree.

I’ve returned from two weeks of travel, which happily avoided areas deluged by the week’s rainfall. I see a bit of washout in the garden, but hardly enough to clean up after. Weeds are no more of a problem than any other time when nothing is done for two weeks, and most everything looks much happier than the day I left.

I am surprised to see the yellow, small flowered passion flower vine (Passiflora lutea) on the far side of the koi pond. A year ago, there was no sign of it, and I figured it was done in by too much shade from hydrangeas and other brush that is so dense to discourage efforts to keep the area even slightly managed.

Oakleaf and Tardiva hydrangeas have grown into a dense thicket on the far side of the koi pond.

One of two purple flowered passion flower vines has made meager efforts to grow, but the first was scalded in early July’s heat, and the current growth is weak enough not to encourage much optimism. Probably, both will be fine, but I have higher hopes for the yellow flowered vine which was not going to be as easily replaced. I wish I hadn’t planted it where it’s so difficult to get to, but the gardener is accustomed to disappointment, and this one is relatively minor.

7 Comments Add yours

  1. Ruth says:

    The hydrangeas look so pretty! Guess they are happy with the rain! Thank you Dave! 😀

    1. Dave says:

      Blue flowered mopheads would be improved considerably by deheading, but summer flowering paniculata hydrangea are just getting started.

  2. Linus says:

    Where is the gordinia from, and how much shade can it tolerate?

    1. Dave says:

      Gordlinia is a intergeneric cross between Franklinia and gordonia. My tree is sited in part sun, but references list it as full sun to part shade. It is zone 7 cold hardy, and evergreen foliage of this tree is damaged below ten degrees. It has survived seven below in this garden with moderate dieback in stems.

      Gordlinia is rarely found outside of specialty mail order nurseries. Mine was procured from a test group of plants. The nursery ultimately decided not to continue growing the tree.

  3. tonytomeo says:

    Inches of rain daily?! It must be nice. It has not rained here since April or so, and may not rain until September or October. This is normal for us. My former neighborhood got only about a foot of rain annually. I am looking at a home in Trona, where the annual rainfall is only about four inches.

    1. Dave says:

      We had zero rainfall the first two weeks of July, a record, and 9-10 inches last week. Rainfall a couple inches at a time has become commonplace this year.Too much moisture is not usually as harmful to plants as no water, but gardens can be irrigated, and it’s difficult to get rid of excessive dampness.

      1. tonytomeo says:

        Goodness! My former neighborhood in the rain shadow of the Santa Cruz Mountains got about a foot of rain annually. I am looking at a home in Trona, where the annual rainfall is about four inches. That is an extreme climate of course.

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