Helen's Garden Renovation Project

Thursday 29 July 2010

Maximum growth

Filed under: Progress — Helen @ 7:23 pm

I wonder at what stage the garden achieves a maximum growth rate. It is over a month since the summer solstice, and the evenings are noticeably drawing in, but the ground is warmer now and the plants have plenty of energy from previous weeks. All I know is that at this time of year there is no time for Renovation and only time for Maintenance.

View from above

View from above

Quite a lot of time has to be spent watering my 157 pots. It may be only 156 now, because I think the lupin has died. I cut it back after flowering, but I think I cut it back too much. I will wait and see. I liked the lupin and was only cutting it back because I thought it might have a better chance if I took off some of its leaves to reduce transpiration. If it has died, maybe I will grow some more from seed when I finally reach the stage of being able to plant things.

As usual, the Willowherb Elimination Stakes were won by the willowherb. I am not sure if I ever really entered the competition this year. I am having trouble not just with the weeds I can see, but also the ones under the tarpaulin. It may be possible for you to see the bulges under the tarpaulin on the right hand side of the picture. The bulges are not gas from putrefying dead animals which got themselves trapped under the tarpaulin, but from the weeds that are happily growing in blue light and gobbling up the carbon dioxide from respiring animals and microorganisms in this cosy micro-climate. (In an earlier post I said I did not know where the plants were getting their carbon dioxide from. My mum kindly texted me while I was on holiday to explain that the carbon dioxide came from respiration. This is, of course, obvious. If it turns out that I still got an A star for my GCSE biology that I took last month, that will prove there is something wrong with the exams).

My biggest problem with the next stage of Renovation is going to be to work out where to put the plants while it is being carried out. Some of them can go in the greenhouse (they can’t go there at the moment, because it is too hot) and the perennials can go in the passage by the side of the house where the sheds are (they can’t go there at the moment because there’s not enough light for non-dormant plants). Perhaps I can even put the deciduous plants in the garage for a few days, since they won’t be photosynthesising.

But for now, I shall just continue to weed, cut back, mow and water until the relentless pace of growth relents a bit.

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