Saturday, August 29, 2009

Crazy Summer

This has been an unusually cool summer here in Indiana. We had the second coolest July since 1947. In fact, the Indianapolis July average temperature was 70.9 degrees.



One of my summer favorites, lantana, definitely didn't like the cooler temperatures and has hardly bloomed this summer. A few of the plants don't even have a single bloom! How sad is that? Nothing but the stinky leaves!

The salvia seeds that were sown in early summer are still tiny plants, (you can see a few of them by the lantana in the top picture), and only a few have bloomed.

The Knockout roses haven't bloomed much either.



I've wondered if the cooler weather is why the butterflies have been so scarce this year. I saw my first tiger swallowtail today. It wasn't a pretty sight at all. This poor butterfly was so battered that it could barely fly. I also finally spotted my first painted lady today! Usually they are all over the verbena and zinnias in August, but they have been absent from my garden this summer. By the time I grabbed the camera it was gone.



The rabbits are a different story altogether; they have indeed been prolific this year. This little guy seems to like it in my yard. It is rather tame and I can get within a few feet of it before it scampers away. I worked off and on all day in the yard and it stayed close by the whole time.

While the cooler summer temperatures haven't been great for some of the plants, it has been very nice for me! Today was another cool one. It was delightful to have the windows up and and a cool breeze blowing in the house in August. I spent most of the day out working in the yard. I actually got dressed up and ready to run a few errands but decided that I didn't want to leave the house today after all. I decided to stay outside and enjoy every minute of this wonderful weather and try to make up for the lost time in the garden! And that is exactly what I did!

20 comments:

Ewa said...

We had the wettest summer in Poland I remember. Raining almost everyday. Plants grew like crazy, but for flowers the conditions were very difficult. Temperatures were very moderate.
Greetings,

Pam/Digging said...

Your Knock Out roses haven't bloomed for cold. Mine haven't bloomed for heat. One extreme or another, right? I'm glad you're able to enjoy the cool weather, Robin. We had a nice day here with low humidity, and even though the temps were in the mid-90s, that made a huge difference.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

It has been nice and cool this summer here too. I have thoroughly enjoyed it however like you I have noticed that the butterflies do not like it. I was worried that our garden was the only one with fewer butterflies but I have read on several blogs about this concern. Aren't rabbits the most friendly animals.

Cameron (Defining Your Home) said...

All of the blooms seem to be out of whack here, but our summer went back and forth between too hot, too dry and too cool and too wet. It has made me want to switch over to growing more annuals and fewer perennials. Our butterflies didn't show up until the first week of August.

Cameron

Janet said...

I echo Cameron's assessment of our summer weather. We are so swampy right now. Sorry your Lantana hasn't bloomed much. Mine has been such a butterfly magnet.

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

That poor butterfly looks pretty battered.We too have had cooler than normal temps,which I don't mind.The farmers are several weeks behind schedule with the harvest.We will need along mild fall to catch up.
Blessings,Ruth

Muhammad khabbab said...

cooler summer is the main reason for lack of butterflies. at our side, it is still 100F here and butterflies wander from one place to another whole afternoon. still the pics are awesome.

Tatyana@MySecretGarden said...

How interesting about your summer. Ours was better than usual - warm and sunny. An evil with long ears is so cute...

Naturegirl said...

Robin it has been a wet summer here for us...the tomatoe plants are taking their time to ripen ..but all my flowers seem to be prolific!! I must say not too many butterflies here..even though I have posted my butterfly garden!
Autumn will bring sunny warm days..and then we bundle up!
Enjoy your days in the garden w/ Mr. bunny! :) NG

Frances said...

Hi Robin, what a wise woman you are, staying in the garden rather than going out so as not to miss the glorious weather. Our lantanas have taken a very long time to get going, and it has been hot although we have had more rain than the last couple of drought years. It seems like fall is coming quickly and some things have barely begun. Maybe that is the way it always is, my perception isn't that accurate sometimes. Our butterflies are battered like yours, I don't even have any good shots of them, last year there were many. But we both still have lots of summer days left. Like you, I will enjoy them while they last. :-)
Frances

Gail said...

Robin, I've just begun to notice a few more butterflies in the garden...and I do mean few! I'm so glad you decided to stay home so we could hear your thoughts and see your photos~~the bunnies may be a pain in the flower, but they are too cute, gail

Sherri said...

Love all the pics but the bunny ones are so cute. I know they can be destructive in a garden but they are so sweet looking. Thanks for sharing!

flowergardengirl said...

Same here Robin--lots of leaves and few flowers and insects. I had huge tomato vines but the fruit hung on the vine and didn't ripen.

I'm just now getting a good amount of butterflies but the numbers are way down. The Monarch migration site says the Monarchs are moving a month early meaning an early winter. But they are clustering in larger numbers in one particular place instead of spreading out more.

Mel said...

Hi Robin--I'm delurking to say that I really love your site. The photos are wonderful and your giving, caring nature show through in all that you write. It's a pleasure to visit! We've also had a cool, somewhat wet summer (we're in southwestern PA) but a lot of the days have been quite pleasant to spend outdoors (just not swimming!) Today, however, is another story--I don't think it got into the 70s all day. In AUGUST! But we're not experiencing a drought, nor do we have wildfires--we're trying to be thankful for all the blessings we do have. Keep up the lovely work.

Poetic Shutterbug said...

The rabbits are just adorable and the photos so detailed and vivid. Where I live we do not have seasons. It could be in the 50's one day and in the 80's the next. Thanks for sharing your photos and info with us.

NCmountainwoman said...

Definitely a strange summer here as well. So strange that it's hard to believe summer is ending and another season is beginnning.

Diana said...

Guess that cooler weather is keeping the bunnies inside with nothing to do but...make more bunnies! Glad you are enjoying the cooler temps. My father in law said it was 48 in Arcadia this morning. Brrr...Don't you love just spending the whole day in the garden? Heaven. It's getting cool enough to be tolerable here and I love it, too.

marmee said...

it has been a different summer here too with cooler/wetter summer.
it has definitely effected so many things around here...i guess we are in for a wild winter.

Yolanda Elizabet Heuzen said...

There's always lots of rain during summer here so a rainy, cool summer is normal for me. There even has been many a year where we skipped summer altogether and went from spring straight into autumn.

Great pics Robin, the rabbit pics are my favourites this time as they are fantastic, I love it that you can see the veins in the rabbit's ears.

Kathleen said...

You're not alone Robin ~ I've had the same issues. Things have taken so long to bloom and my containers look pathetic. The heat lovers I selected to plant in them never took off. It's hard to complain about wet and cool but I'm hoping for more "normal" weather next summer.