I have a weakness for gardening books and magazines as I'm sure many gardeners do. What better time to spend looking through the books than hot summer days. A majority of my books are the result of going to Car Boot sales when I am in England. Many people in England do not have a garage therefore cannot have a garage sale. To sell their unwanted items they drive to a large field at the weekend and sell their items from the back of their car. Above are the books I found this year along with a variety of Gardener's World magazine. Who cares if they are issues from several years ago. I had to leave some books in England because I couldn't bring them all, especially the Royal Horticultural Society Book of Plants. Even if I can't grow some of the plants in the books I can feast my eyes and dream.
The other odd items were finds at the grocery store. A couple of hand forks; I have at least 8 of these now. I'm glad these ones have red handles because I am forever losing them around the garden. Why is it so difficult to find this particular tool in Austin? These and the string were the best deals in England. The little plastic coated rings have been a great success for supporting the cucumber on the trellis. I wish I had bought two packets.
On this same trip we visited the gardens at Arley Hall in Cheshire. This was on the recommendation of Zanthan Gardens (MSS). May was a little early for the main flowering but on the herbaceous border the Ceonothus and alliums were in full flower.
However, it was the perfect time to catch the Rhododendrons and Azaleas in full bloom. What a sight! Now this is one plant we can not grow in Austin because of the alkalinity of our soil. Well, in a pot maybe, but it is not even worth trying to amend the soil as it would eventually revert with the alkaline water.
Walking round the nursery at Arley I was delighted to spot the following plant for sale.
It is nice to look back on those cooler days spent in England in May and look forward to the Fall gardening days in Austin.