It has been a very tricky summer for gardeners, and rather depressing with the relentless sun beating down. I do not like looking at Veronicastrums with their leaves turned mournfully down, The main advantage of this garden is that it is north facing so everything takes its turn. If Polly had not been watering the newly planted dahlias I don’t think much would have been happening, certainly no flowers. Annoying, because after the tulip display we depend on the dahlias for interest and colour down in the par terre. Even one of my grasses I am probably going to get rid of it looks so brown and flimsy. It is Pennisetum black buttons. Hopeless! I would never get rid of Veronicastrums they play a prominent part in most of my borders. I suppose one of the stars are the Eryngiums, their intense blue makes it difficult for you to take your eyes off them. It is amazing the way the stem is so blue too. They last well in water. We had friends to lunch yesterday and James picked some flowers for the table. You sit looking at them eye level and you notice so many things about them, Achillea, Helenium with particularly the central boss which has like gold tracing on it; and the Crocosmia, with the unopened flower and the throat of the open flower. The Pennisetum which is succeeding is Karley Rose, which has already had a chunk chopped off because it was getting too big. I am not sure I want a summer like this next year.