I wait impatiently for the days to cool, for the garden to show signs of sleepiness as it gets ready for bed - but summer lingers on. By mid-morning it is too warm to be out in the garden, and by late afternoon, when there should be a cool September breeze to make happy hour on the verandah a welcome break it is still and heavy - no lightness in the air that speaks to one of September when the garden catches its breath and the delphinium and the roses send forth blooms that rival suimmer's show.
Usually, by this time in September the Aster displays tentative shaggy flowers, while all over the dark green bush buds promise a glorious tribute to fall later in the month, but this year both they and the 'mums are content to graciously bide their time while summer flowers give us one last tender retrospect.
We wait for cool mornings, mild afternoons and early evenings to refresh the spirit that laboured under August's heat.
I go up the hill to the garden we left in mid summer and dig up bits of lavender, the Christmas rose and the purple hellebore that is just now coming into bloom. I have replanted the astilbe and this week I will cut back the peonies, - the white ones and the pink ones and the brilliant red - and bring them to plant in the long raised bed in the back garden. And then I will go to the nursery and hopefully find an Abraham Darby and a Prairie Princess and a white Winchester Cathedral to plant between the peonies and delphiniums. And at the back, against the fence, we will plant the heritage sweetpeas and some sunflowers, and place the lady fountain somewhere amidst the shade with some forget-me-nots around her feet.
And then I will be able to get my knitting out, and finally feel at home and contented.