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There is nothing more glorious than a summer garden in full bloom

Summertime and the living is easy! The garden is at its fullest, overflowing with foliage and a cacophony of bright blooms. There is a wealth of interest and colour and a lavish richness of fragrances from all the flowers. As temperatures rise, many of the spring flowering shrubs and bulbs take a back step, and in the foreground and putting the sizzle into summer are predominantly the herbaceous perennials and the bedding plants.

Climbers such as wisteria, clematis, passionflowers, honeysuckles and scrambling roses begin their ascent towards the sky. Closer to the ground the herbaceous border provides an embarrassment of riches, ranging from alliums with their huge blue spheres held up high and jostling for position amongst other sizzling summer stalwarts creating a riot of colour, such as Verbena bonarensis, phlox, poppies, sea holly, lilies and geraniums.

Shrubs too provide not just colour but a sensory overload of scent as well with philadelphus, and of course the roses, with their heavenly scent catching on the warm summer breezes.

Ceanothus create large blocks of deep blue colour, almost like floral walls, while fuchsias create a vivid brightness with their flowers hanging down from the stems, looking like ballerinas rejoicing and dancing because summer has arrived.

Summer is a time for getting outdoors, enjoying a barbeque or picnic on the lawn and soaking up those long, warm evenings. Often there is the distant, melodic throbbing of lawn mowers cutting grass, and the soporific buzz of bees dancing and bobbing around flowering plants such as lavender and rosemary.

As the warmth increases, it becomes a time for enjoying and relaxing in the garden, as much as physically doing the gardening. Pulling up a deck chair or lounger, slapping on the sun cream and relaxing with a good book and a cool drink, are just as much a part of summer gardening as cutting the grass and deadheading the roses. In larger gardens paddling pools are filled for children and badminton or croquet can be played on the lawn. If you have a small garden, summer is the perfect time to visit larger public gardens and open spaces to enjoy the ambiance, find some summer solace and enjoy the beauty of the surrounding world.

Extracted from 100 Perfect Plants: A Simple Plan for Your Dream Garden by Simon Akeroyd