Sitting Out the Rain

It’s been a few weeks and the wind keeps blowing, the rain keeps falling and I keep swearing for it to clear up, warm up and dry out so I can get outside and get on with some gardening work.

Water pooling in the border edges

The borders are currently lined with pools of water, the grass is very squelchy and we’re supposed to be in early summer. From looking at what’s flowering, I’d say that we’re almost a whole month late. We don’t even have roses flowering yet and there are azaleas yet to open.

Willow border becoming established and gradually developing

With so much on the to-do list it has been incredibly frustrating that I’ve not been able to work on the garden as I’ve wanted to. The two main jobs of making the final border and re-levelling the patio have simply been stuck since late winter. It feels like we’ve not have more than 24 hours without rain. I think yesterday it rained four times and hailed twice throughout the day. There were a few minutes of sunny spells in between.

Sweetly scented Azalea

I kind of rely on a sunny and warm start to the season to lift my mood and energy after a dark cold winter, but the longer daylight days mean I just get to see the howling gales and rain storms for longer before we turn in for the night. We are less than one month from the longest day and temperatures are still struggling to reach mid-teens. That’s a sentence I thought I’d never write. I’ve always relied on May to guarantee sunny weather, getting summer-hot towards the end of the month.

Damp enough for mushrooms

There have been some positive aspects though, my gamble to divide a large number of herbaceous perennials and move plants around has paid off as the persistent rain and cooler temperatures mean they’ve had a much easier time settling in, not having to face hot, sunny (normal) May weather. The plants that I have waiting to go on sale have also been kept well-watered without my intervention. The plants in the Willow border are also establishing well with all the rain.

Seed germination struggles

The weather-related delay has had a much more serious impact on the time scales for the planned NGS opening. The original plan was to open for next summer. It was an ambitious target at that, requiring me to go all-out this year. I estimate that I’ve lost at least one month and probably the best part of two worth of work in the garden due to the bad weather. This has set back everything and now there’s an increasing chance that the border and indeed the plants won’t be ready for next year – the cold temperatures and low light has made seed sowing late and germination difficult. I need to seriously consider delaying for another season.

Ferns look the happiest they’ve ever been from the wet weather

In the mean time, all I can do is to sit out the weather, hoping that the rain does eventually stop for long enough to let the garden dry out a little so I can actually walk in it without getting wet feet.

6 Comments


  1. Wow, that’s a wet garden. I hope you get some warm, dry weather soon. Meantime, we finally got some real rain last night. That’s a very lovely azalea.

    Reply

    1. Thanks Jason, it rained again today, but it was only drizzle this time and the forecast has some warm days coming up so I’m hoping we might get to see some sunshine shortly. I’ve forgotten the name of the Azalea but I might have its label somewhere in a random old mushroom tub where I collect plant labels.

      Reply

  2. Where are you located? I’m south of Ft. Worth, Texas and we are having rain, rain, and more rain. It does make it hard to get yard work done. Good luck.

    Reply

    1. Hello Jeanette, I’m located in the South East of the UK, so even though we’re both having a lot of rain, at least your rain will be a lot warmer than ours is – given that our rain has occasionally turned to hail and wintry showers at times!

      Reply

  3. All that rain would drive me nuts, too. We’ve had a mild start to summer while out west, they’re baking and bone dry. Your garden is gorgeous and anyone who gets to see it should feel honored.

    Reply

    1. Hey Tammie, it’s great to hear from you! After a week or two of hot sunny weather since this post we’ve gone full circle again and are back to rain, persistent rain. The garden still seems to be growing (out of control) but I’m missing all the flowers and working outside. That’s a really powerful compliment at the end there too, thanks for it and sending you lots of love.

      Reply

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