It's been hot this summer, bloody hot - and virtually no rain for months.
While we wait for our grapes to grow up our new trellis I added shade cloth to give some protection from the harsh sun. It's made quite a difference, helping to keep the deck cooler, reducing reflection inside and while ugly it's going to stay there for the summer.
On really hot days 35º+ we close all the windows and curtains in the house. The pelmets and curtains inside work well, but we wanted to improve on that by reducing the amount of reflected heat coming in through the windows. Once the heat is inside, that's where it stays until we open up the house at night when the weather cools down.
Playing around with shade cloth has helped me envisage what the future may hold for us, after our plants have established themselves. I'm thinking of what to plant on the west side of the house after experienceing the impact of the shade cloth that I've set up there. I'm sure that the plants will perform better than the shade cloth, with greater shade, dappled light, evaporative cooling effect and much more aesthetically pleasing, while also provinding us with a harvest.
|Shade cloth added to reo-trellis while we wait for the grape vines to grow.|
|Shade cloth added to west side of house to help shade the small west window during a string of really hot days.|
|Our plum and cumquat tree are beginning to give some shade to the water tank and cellar|