Mid-year reality check
Gardening is fun, at least most of the time. But many things are out of our control, and we simply have to accept the fact that s*#t happens. Especially in the year 2020 which seems doggedly determined to wobble from bad to worse.
As if COVID-19 weren't enough, we just went through the most oppressive heat wave in years. And now California is burning: 300+ wildfires caused by lightning strikes combined with extreme dryness. Davis is not in any danger, but a pall of smoke has been hanging in the air for almost a week, leading to apocalyptic-looking skies and very unhealthy air.
|Early evening sky from our front yard|
The heat wave I mentioned—daytime highs of 105°F or above combined with hot nights—took its toll in our garden. The loss I mourn the most is this monkey puzzle tree (Araucaria araucana). I bought it as a small seedling at the UC Berkeley Botanical Garden many years ago, and it was perfectly healthy until the heat came. Now it's toast, literally.
|Grevillea petrophiloides 'Big Bird' didn't even make it into the ground. There is a slight chance it may recover. Since I really want to plant it, I'll be patient.|
|Patience won't fix this. These are goners. Top left: Bossiaea linophylla, a small shrub from Australia; top right: Grevillea ‘Poorinda Royal Mantle’; bottom: Gnidia polystachya, a rare South Africa shrub|
|LEFT: Grevillea ‘Poorinda Royal Mantle’ RIGHT: Gnidia polystachya|
|Hibiscus 'Holy Grail' from Walters Gardens' Summerific Collection|
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