The summer progresses - quickly, as we're now about 2/3 of the way through. I'm glad the blasts of hot humid weather are lasting only a few days so far. I can take it for a few days when relief comes after in the form of really nice summer days with blue skies, lots of sun and low humidity. It's also good for the herbs that I harvest from the gardens and dry. In humid weather, the herbs and flowers will re-absorb moisture from the air. Unless thoroughly dry, they should not be stored away in jars or plastic bags because mold can develop, making them unusable.
It's a funny year, plant-wise. Some things are going like gang-busters and others are just limping along. In the vegetable garden, we had a huge crop of sugar peas earlier in the season. Our first batch of beans were good, then they petered out with the how weather, now I see more blossoms, so I think they'll pick up again. We've picked a few tomatoes, but peppers are really slow. Perhaps not enough hot weather for them. Same with basil - all of mine are finally growing and looking good except for the patch of Genovese. Did have enough tomato and basil for one batch of tomatoes and mozzarella with basil - one of my summertime favorites. Next up, bruschetta.
Culantro, a heat tolerant substitute for cilantro, is another one that looks pretty much the same as when I planted it. (My sister reports the same.) This is the first year we've had culantro, so I don't know if it's not hot enough for substantial growth or it just takes longer to get established. And of the four hyaconth bean vines we have planted in front of the shop, the two in the middle are doing well and the two at the ends are not. Our helper asked why. I told him plants are like people - some are stronger than others.
After talking to a customer recently, it reminded me to encourage people to cut back perennials after blooming. She mentioned the overgrown look in her garden, Many perennials decline in appearance after flowering. Cutting them back hard encourages the growth of new foliage, giving them a neater appearance. Some, like hyssop, catmint, lavender and Jupiter's beard will produce a second, usually lighter batch of blooms.