July wilt. You won't find it listed under pests and diseases in your gardening books, but it's one of the worst threats to the garden I know. July comes, the temperature rises over 35°C (95°C), the humidity soars, and the plants wilt. And so does the gardener.
There's not much else to show for this month's Garden Blogger's Bloom Day, but one container has surprised me.
My calendula have done well this year and are full of buds. They usually submit to mildew fairly early on, but this year have been fine. I miscalculated a bit with the arrangement - I thought the marigolds would be taller and the calendula shorter - perhaps I should have pinched them out. And don't ask me how that sunflower got in the back there. I've left him because at least he matches the colour scheme ...
I found out today that Milan is classed as having a humid subtropical climate - that's the same as the south-eastern states of the US - Alabama, Mississippi and so on. Which in one way is a lucky coincidence, because it means that my new balcony experiment might not be so crazy after all. I'm growing a plant which I've not seen in Italy before, but which would be right at home in Alabama. It germinated about a fortnight ago and is growing fast. Any guesses?