Like the mad dogs and Englishmen made famous by Noel Coward, the team at Borde Hill Garden are hard at work in spite of the heat, as there’s plenty to be done to keep everything at its blooming best.
For starters the Rose Garden needs ongoing deadheading to promote further glorious flowering in the summer months. Elsewhere, August will be the perfect time to cut the box hedging – ideally we will wait for an overcast, dry day before tidying up any loose fronds that have started to appear.
We will also prune evergreens such as the yew hedges, as the same principles apply, and summer flowering shrubs such as Philadelphus will receive the pruning treatment too.
In contrast, the sumptuously fragrant lavender will be treated with more of a firm hand. It will be cut back as hard as we possibly can without venturing into the old wood – this will hopefully ensure a strong re-emergence of the flowers.
Whereas when it comes to the wisteria, we will prune back new growth to four or five buds.
Perennials that have finished flowering, such as alchemilla, geraniums, nepeta and delphiniums, will be cut back this month too, to promote fresh growth and in some cases further flowering.
But quite apart from all the snipping and chopping, we will of course have to make sure that our many pots and anything that’s newly-planted is kept well-watered during dry spells. And we will apply this same principle to all the hard-working staff too.
Musical Sundays 11 & 25 Aug, 1 Spet
Children’s Woodland Trail, daily
Sculpture Exhibition, daily
Specialist Plant Fair and talk with Pippa Greenwood, 15 September
Book your ticket for Pippa Greenwood’s Talk at the Plant Fair 15 September