We are in the middle of the first heatwave this summer, it is actually quite hot. James has cut off all the long growth at the base of the three lime trees at the bottom of the garden, and the three trunks look so much better. He also has pruned all the branches that had reverted in the Quercus Cerris Variegata. This is a beautiful very spreading tree which is growing at the foot of the avenue of Malus Transitoria, and the only mature specimen I have seen was at Kerdalo, in Brittany. I started off with this really tiny. We have one disaster, which is that our Wisteria floribunda Alba up the front of the house, is dying. James has carefully pruned it and cherished it for a very long time, and he is more upset than me. It will all look very bare when we take it down, and I hope we are young enough to replace it with another wisteria.
I have just made the discovery of the most beautiful rose, called Rose Burgundy Ice. The colour is amazing, and you will have to look it up. I am going to order two, and I am going to get rid of Rosa Graham Thomas which I have grown for ages. Then the colour will cross over to a new delphinium which I am going to plant in the Klimt border, called Tiddles, which is a slightly unfortunate name, but has an award of merit, in 1993. It is a violet colour and I saw it last week in Sibylle’s garden. It is so exciting when you find new plants that you fall in love with, and think that you cannot do without. This hot weather is rejuvenating the dahlias, thank goodness, as I could hardly bring myself to look at them. Every time I go into the greenhouse a horrible spiders web catches me, and I really don’t like it at all. The beech hedge out the front badly needs cutting, and has long tendrils waving all over the place. We don’t dare cut it at the moment as it will get scorch again. For the two big borders on the main lawn this is almost the best time, though the roses will be getting ready for their second flush. All my agapanthus are in bud and about to flower. I think the best one I have is called Quink Drops, and needless to say came from Graham Gough, which is where most of my best plants have originated.