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Drought At Devonia


By AndrewR


While some of you in the west have been struggling with more than your share of rain, here in the southeast, it’s a different story. We have had no significant rain for weeks now plus temperatures hovering around eighty degrees for a while. I think Bracknell receives less than its fair share as the weather systems seem to follow the river Thames to Reading and then head up towards Windsor and Maidenhead.

I work on the principle of giving a plant the conditions it requires and letting it take its chance. After a good soaking at planting time, nothing gets watered again unless it is showing signs of extreme distress. There are a few exceptions – conifers (which give no warning signals; they are green one day and brown the next), daphnes (which will die if they dry out at the root) and large, newly planted shrubs (which will not have got their roots established deeply to maintain all their top growth). Even these will only get a good watering about once a fortnight, encouraging them to send roots down in search of moisture. Does this regime work? Here are some photos to show how things look just now.

Front garden as seen from the house – this faces due south

Another border in the front garden that receives full sun

The main border in the back garden. This gets sun in the morning but is in shade from around midday

The new piece of garden, planted last autumn and this spring. The large shrubs have received four waterings this year, the smaller plants just one

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That looks very good Andrew. Its very dry here too.

18 Jul, 2010


Hi Andrew
You must be fed up listening to us complaining about the rain. We have had very wet conditions here for weeks coupled with high winds. My Pelargonium flower heads are rotting before they get a chance to open. It was warmer today but the wind prevents us from enjoying it. I have been wearing warm jumpers and the gas fire has to be lit each evening. After such wonderful weather in June we feel we have moved into Autumn mode. I would like you to send me some warm sun and I shall send you some rain.
Best wishes

18 Jul, 2010


looks great andrew and wouldnt think you had no rain, we have had it most of the week here and strong winds that did most damage, lovely pics to ;o))

18 Jul, 2010


I cannot remember when we had a significant amount of rain here on the Sussex coast ... the lawns are parched but I know they'll recover so not concerned at all ... the Hydrangeas were drooping so they've had a drenching late evening ... the temperature is meant to hit 92 on Tuesday with rain on Wednesday ... it cannot come too soon for me ! Having planted up the front gravelled area recently with Lavender, Eucalyptus, Rosemary and Verbena Bonariensis I have to say they're loving the sunny weather. : o )))

18 Jul, 2010


Yes it is very dry round here Andrew, we often don't get much of any forecas rain do we. Nevertheless your garden is looking lovely on your regime. I only water bedding plants and containers, the shrubs have to take their chances although I did have to do some emergency watering on a large Rhododendron which was looking very distressed recently.

18 Jul, 2010


Your right Sandra its been a week of wind and rain and still a hosepipe ban.

18 Jul, 2010


fed up with it now, i want sunshine carol

18 Jul, 2010


Makes two of us, hope its not going to stay like this for rest of summer, like it did last year, and the one before, and the one before that, :((

18 Jul, 2010


hope not i have joe`s 18th planned in garden for family ;o((

18 Jul, 2010


Sanbaz - you might have to hire a garden in Bracknell ;-)

18 Jul, 2010


Fingers crossed for you,nice one Andrew:))

18 Jul, 2010


are you offering andrew ;o)), my brother only has a small garden

18 Jul, 2010


I can empathise with Andrew. altough we have had some rain the soil is dust dry just 1" below the surface. I too resent watering the garden but have to do some pots and a few newly planted plants from early summer. Fingers crossed.

18 Jul, 2010


Does seem to be doing very well, in spite of the drought.

2 Aug, 2010

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