Wishing you a happy New Year in this my first post for 2018.
Two days ago the maximum temperature in Torquay was about 28 Celsius. Yesterday it was about 41C with hot dry winds from the north. This morning it is cool and still below 20C. A single very hot day is unusual, but much better than several in succession. It points out the folly of growing plants that are not really suited to the climate.
I can only grow hydrangeas in pots, where they can be placed in semi-shade. The lack of shelter from hot north winds and the dry soil in our garden makes this an unsuitable environment even for a more skilled gardener than I am. The photo above was taken on 22nd December 2016.
I watered the pots three times yesterday but was not able to prevent the sun/heat damage.
Fortunately we knew the hot day was coming, so on the previous evening I picked a number of the better blooms in advance of the heat. Later today I will remove the damaged flowers and hope that there may be some more flowers produced by Autumn.
This morning when we walked down to the beach we passed this Corymbia Ficifolia which, being a native of Western Australia, was unscathed by yesterday's heat.
In fact I think a few more flowers blossomed yesterday, but there is no sign of heat stress.
My attention was caught by the noisy twittering of a number of Rainbow Lorikeets that were feeding on the nectar of the flowers.
I made today's ikebana using two hydrangea flower-heads and the stems of Strelitzia Juncea. I used the stems to create a design with strong lines to harmonise with the lines in the vase. The ceramic vase was made by Graeme Wilkie of Qdos Gallery in Lorne.
Greetings from Christopher
7th January 2018