June In The Garden

This year has been an anomaly for the PNW. Dry, little to no snowpack, an El Nino year. Summer started in Spring, and our June was the 4th dryest in recorded hsitory (how dry? Less than .23 of an inch of recorded rain!), with only 4 days of cloud coverage. June is rarely like this. In some ways this was good, but in most ways it hasn’t been. If anything, it has been so dry and hot that I have had to water DAILY for the past 3 weeks. And certain plants just cannot stand the never ending hot weather (like upper 80’s/90’s now for nearly 2 weeks). Nearly everyone around here has given up on lawn watering (I am OK with that!).


That was also an anomaly, me watering the lawn on Saturday, to ensure the dormant (dead) lawn didn’t catch on fire. The boys were quite happy with Mr. Sprinkler getting to come out…..

The only green is my garden, which does look glorious I can tell you 😉


Butterfly Bush is in bloom! The bees oh so love this one every year. I planted 2 more in less than loved spot in a dull corner this summer.


In mid June I was wondering about my poor potato plants. They were turning yellow and dying off. Figuring I had a 50/50 chance of potatoes versus blight, I started digging.


Well, good news. It was time for them to be picked! Early, but tasty Yukon Golds awaited me.


With the heat I got a measly 1.5 pounds, enough for an amazing potato salad. Next year I will grow a bit differently.


What loves heat though? Lavender. It goes crazy in it. At least something likes it.


My $35 cherries I joked. My baby Rainier Cherry tree gave us 2 cherries this year, in its first year. Being a $70 full size tree, I had to joke about how much those 2 cherries cost us. Still, in the coming years it will pay us back 😉 Rainier Cherries cost $5 a pound on sale so I can’t wait!


Pink Lavender is a pretty one. Give it another year, it will be as big as my purple ones.


The heat hasn’t been gentle on my pickles though. While I am getting a bunch, the heat saps the tender vines easily. I also worry about getting bitter cukes. But in the end, the heat decided it: I pulled them out over the weekend. It was too hot, for too long. Even watering daily couldn’t match for it.


This mess? You might remember last year I planted a native strawberry plant in a hanging basket. It had a tiny slip of a succulent growing with it (came with the plant). This year? It is choking out the strawberry. I have to admit though, that I really like the succulent. And it is flowering!


Heat winners? All my summer squashes. Lots of growth, as long as I water heavily. Lets hope they get producing – which some of them are.


This little plant has a lot to say. It was the only one to survive when I tried to grow pansies in the greenhouse in late winter.


After many setbacks with my beans, I finally have good growth.


The Scarlett Runner Beans are very pretty in bloom.


And nothing better to close June off than so many berries….blueberries, strawberries, marionberries, red raspberries and even a few early tomatoes and late peas. Yum!

July is here and I have a feeling it will be the dog days for the rest of summer. If it would cool down to normal, I am sure the plants would appreciate it. I do know that I have so much work to do out there, and it is just too hot and bright to do it. And I need to start thinking about seeding the fall crops in the coming weeks as well.

Until then….


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