It has been scorching for weeks. Yes, weeks, not days. We are having a proper summer. Where you wake up every day and know you can eat breakfast outside, but have to get stuff done before 9am because then it will be too hot to move.
Phlox is loving it. As I was standing here, a peacock butterfly landed in front of me on the phlox, and I made squeaking noises as I tried to get the camera to focus on it. I didn’t. I had to make do with the lovely flower close-up.
I utterly love this Phlox with Geranium ‘Anne Thomson’ behind.
Let’s gaze upon Euphorbia griffithii ‘Fireglow’. It can take the heat. I love the red stems.
Hemerocallis is also basking.
Clematis has been spectacular this year. This is ‘Princess Diana’.
And I think that this is ‘Etoile Violette’.
I talked earlier in the week about iridescence. Here it is again:
In fact everything in the Bright Border seems to be shimmering in the heat.
I am on the verge of deadheading and removing the older leaves of Achemilla mollis to keep it looking fresh. I nearly started there and then, but spotted a little caterpillar so I let it be for now. I love his whiskers. You can also see the hairs on Alchemilla mollis.
The roses are between flushes. Phlox, Hemerocallis and Buddleia are providing the colour.
Euphorbia and Crocosmia foliage are providing the green zing.
Oh, and there’s Geranium ‘Anne Thomson’. She never stops.
I utterly love this combination of Hemerocallis ‘Crimson Pirate’ and Geranium ‘Anne Thomson’.
I found a little spider in Hemerocallis ‘Bonanza’. Which also led me to admire the rich mahogany against the yellow. More iridescence.
The next wave of Crocosmia is about to start. I think this inherited one is ‘Emberglow’, which is a lovely rich red. I love anticipating flowers when I see buds like this. It is lovely to still have new flowers to look forward to.
Phlox paniculata ‘Coral Flame’ starred in Boring…. It is at its peak right now. Please admire the purple centres against the coral pink. This is another favourite colour combo.
Do you see the hoverfly?
It’s as if this hoverfly were made of liquid gold and bronze. And look at the wings! And the shadow of the wings on the Phlox petals.
I have been spending a bit of time with the Buddleia. This is ‘Royal Red’.
It looks lovely with Phlox paniculata ‘Starfire’ behind, which picks up the magenta red of the throats of the individual Buddleia flowers.
Oh look! This is what I have been trying to capture! A Peacock butterfly!
At this point I was wedged between the Buddleia and the Phlox, and was desperately trying to lean in to get a closer photo. I spooked the butterfly, and off it flew.
But then, right by my head, another! You can only just see the eye on the wing; it is showing me its velvet underside.
The texture of the wing is incredible; like a fur. And look at its marvellous antennae and proboscis!
It looks like burnt toast here.
It had a good slurp and then it was off. Allowing me to admire the Buddleia. I think I love the flowers best when they open in tiers, like this one.
I didn’t mention the scent. Buddleia has a gorgeous perfume, but I just can’t describe it. Does it smell of violets, or I am I influenced by the colour? It is a warm and dark and seductive smell.
This is another Buddleia, ‘Black Knight’. I use Buddleia in the back row of the border, interspersed with taller roses and Euphorbia. ‘Black Knight’ seems to be going over really quickly this year. I am deadheading the blooms as they shrivel and turn brown, which should prolong the flowering.
This is a shorter Buddleia, which I bought for its name, ‘Miss Ruby’ (one of our dogs is called Ruby). This flower looks like it is sky-diving.
At this point I had to retreat to the shade. Just as I put my camera away, another Peacock butterfly sailed past on its way to the Buddleia. And then I saw a dragonfly.
I will keep trying!