The Glory of Autumn


Some hints and tips to make your garden really glow this Autumn

(Don’t write the outdoor life just yet)

What a fabulous summer we have had in Britain, I was lucky enough to go away in the middle of summer and some of my plants suffered a little due to lack of water, and the lawn is looking far from its best, but with a little rain, some TLC and milder temperatures, sure enough plants have rallied and the lawn is limping back to life.

Once the schools go back many people seem to think that time spent in the garden is over, but opportunities for enjoying the garden and working in it during autumn are far from over. Winter is a way off; (in my humble opinion mid December is the start of winter proper these days) so here are a few pointers to getting your garden looking amazing this season.

  • Add some autumn flowering plants: If you’ve not got any colour in your garden right now, the next few months are what us garden people call planting season. The soil is warm, there is usually plenty of rain; plants can settle in and get established well before the hard frosts arrive in winter.

For instant impact try some perennial plants: Aster’s, Echinacea, Rudbeckia, Verbena, and Japanese anemone’s are really coming into their own in late summer and autumn.

  • If you don’t have the changing colours of autumn happening outside your window, with leaves and berries changing from green to glorious golds and reds now is a great time to plant shrubs for next year and make your garden glow.

You can’t go wrong with a Japanese Acer shrub or tree. Or add some fire to your winter border with a Cornus midwinter fire.

  • Keep mowing! If the sun is shining and the raining is falling the grass will keep growing. I have been known to mow as late as December when the weather is unseasonably warm. But don’t pack your mower way at the end of September. It will make your job so much easier in the spring if your lawn is neat and tidy at the start of winter.

(Don’t however mow in wet or frosty weather)

  • Boring and back breaking it can be, but weeding is still a necessary chore, if the grass is growing so will the weeds be.
  • Take stock and re arrange plants that aren’t so happy, or those that are overcrowded. Moving plants costs nothing but time, perennials can often be divided to get more free plants. You may have self-seeded plants that could do with a new home, either in your garden or in a friends. (don’t forget to feed and water any plants moved.)
  • Mulch your borders. A good layer of compost can feed the soil and it acts like a blanket as the temperatures drop.
  • Why not plant some spring bulbs. There is so much choice in the garden centres right now, from early flowering crocus, to late spring alliums, you can have colour from January through to May with only a few pounds spend on bulbs. Best get them in before December.

We have four seasons and with careful thought and planning now, all of them can be glorious in the garden.

 

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