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Bring on the Summer Heat

June 28, 2022

Morning on the patio 2022In contrast to the weather in most of the United States, June was cooler than average in Maine. And the cool weather made for an especially lovely early summer garden season. The peony blooms have lasted longer than they normally would, and the roses have been especially lush this year.

In late spring and early summer, my garden is dominated by a soft palette of pinks, blues and violets. Even the hotter shades of magenta and purple appear cooler because of the low contrast between them and their neighbors in the garden, which are also neighbors on the color wheel. As early summer gives way to high summer, however, the soft palette gives way to hotter colors and stronger contrasts.

butterflyweed opening 2022Real summer heat finally arrived this past weekend, with temperatures close to 90F on both Saturday and Sunday. And the arrival of hot weather seemed to trigger the arrival of hot high-season colors in the garden. On Saturday, I noticed that the orange flowers of butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa) had begun to open. On Sunday, I noticed the first bright yellow flowers of both false sunflower (Heliopsis helianthoides) and Coreopsis lanceolata.

1st heliopsis blooms 2022 1st coreopsis 2022

1st orange prelude 2022This morning, the first daylily of the season, ‘Orange Prelude’ opened on the front slope, where it will soon be joined by lots of other hot-color blooms. Bring on the high summer heat!

4 Comments leave one →
  1. permalink
    June 28, 2022 12:54 pm

    Lovely photos! Noticing the same shift in color palette here as well!

    Janet M. Powers

    “I object to violence because when it appears to do good,

    the good is only temporary; the evil it does is permanent.”

    • June 29, 2022 5:13 pm

      One variety of daylily blooming yesterday; four varieties blooming today. The hot colors are coming on fast.

  2. June 28, 2022 11:56 pm

    You have a much more positive view of summer’s heat than I do, Jean! However, I have to admit that the warmer temperatures here are pushing the dahlias closer to bloom, which is something I look forward to. Your vibrant yellows are beautiful in any case.

    • June 29, 2022 5:14 pm

      Kris, I’m actually a bit of a wimp about heat; I start wilting when it gets over 80F. But, since real heat is fairly rare here, I can enjoy a little bit of heat when it happens. And I do love those hot colors in the garden.

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