There are so many flowering plants to choose from in summer. I will start with those flowers that like a sunny garden and well drained soil. Perovskia atriplicifolia Blue Spire also known as Russian Sage is a good small shrub. If you have really dry soil in summer then this is a plant for you. It grows about 75cm tall, upright habit and has grey leaves and little pale blue flowers (see photo). Cut back hard in spring to about 10 cm tall and do not over feed or water. It would look good with white flowered Gaura lindheimeri, a small sub shrub growing to 1m tall which also likes the same soil conditions.
For those with light shade and damp soil, Rodgersias are superb perennials for bold foliage (shaped like large horse chestnut leaves) and in summer, spires of white or pale bronzy flowers. Acteaea simplex which was known as Cimicifuga is another tall growing perennial for boggy areas. The variety Brunette has purple foliage and sends up spires of white flowers to 2m tall in late summer.
Those who have reasonably well drained soil could have the perennial geranium Ann Folkard at the front of the border to provide ground cover and magenta flowers for a long period in summer.
Another bold flower combination is the shrub Spirea Golden Princess with pale green leaves and bright pink flowers to brighten up any area. Both these plants like a sunny place.
Cut evergreen hedges and shrubs now so that the new growth has time to harden off before winter to avoid damage to foliage. Deadhead roses on repeat flowering shrubs. Keep watering vegetables and feed your tomatoes with a proprietary feed to encourage fruit to form. Keep cabbages and other brassicas netted so that the cabbage white butterflies can’t get in to lay eggs.
If you would like to visit gardens for ideas, I suggest you look out for gardens open under the National Gardens Scheme where all proceeds go to charities including Marie Cure Cancer Care and Macmillan Cancer Support.
Visit 51 Garth Drive Chester on 2nd and 6th July to enjoy beautiful herbaceous borders, pond and vegetable areas. Or on 2nd and 3rd July The Rowans at Threapwood near Malpas is open. A garden with an Italian theme to the formal and informal areas featuring ponds, herbaceous borders and a relaxing secret garden.