Indian summer

It's hot.


(You will note this picture was taken in shade.)

The Echium wilts daily...


And perks up when the sun goes down.


Indian summer is one of the few reliable seasonal features of the San Francisco Bay Area. While shorter days mean cooler temperatures for the rest of the country, things start heating up here in coastal California this time of year.

Cold, moist ocean air gets pulled in from the Pacific all summer long when hot air in the Central Valley rises. That convection gets shut off when the Valley air stops rising as the days get shorter. But there's still plenty of sunshine during the day. At night, it's cold.

Perfect time to put out last year's amaryllis bulbs, which I did a couple weeks ago.



Annie in Austin said...

We only had a high around 91ยบ today, Chuck - your area is really cooking.

The way that Echium popped back up is amazing!

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

Pam/Digging said...

God, I love that echium. I'm glad to see that you use the term "Indian summer" the way I've always used it: to denote the warm last days of summer rather than a warm-up after a freeze. I think that must be a warm-climate gardener's interpretation.

The only time I've ever been to San Francisco (about 12 years ago---what a great trip!) was in mid-October. It was really warm in the daytime but pleasantly chilly at night.

chuck b. said...

A wish for something I could never have would be a time-lapse movie of the Echium from very young. If you are some kind of creature who perceives reality as moving faster than it does on the human-scale, the Echium would be fascinating to watch. Like a sea anenome or something.

JvA said...

Lucky you. Summer's over in Seattle, and I already miss it. Though I'm doing an OK job cheering myself up with new cashmere sweaters, woo!

I still plan on spacing out those Julia Phelpses this weekend. What do you think the optimum distance between plants would be, Chuck?

lisa said...

Nice that you at least get a cool-down in the evening. Do you have a fire pit? Pleasantly cool night is a great reason for a little campfire...I suppose there are rules about that in town though.

Anonymous said...

Question: Is that incredible Echium planted in a pot or in the ground? Can you estimate the diameter for me? Just south of Bernal in the Portola neighborhood.

Thanks. Great blog, btw.
SFStroker@gmail.com - Gary.

chuck b. said...

It's in the ground... that one's probably 3' diameter... I have four of them and I think one of them is 4' diameter right now. Doesn't seem like it's been getting any wider for awhile.