Garden, Lifestyle

Autumn Perennials

One thing Gardeners strive for in their gardens is year round interest, and not just during those heady Spring and Summer months when growth is rampant!

Just because October has arrived, it doesn’t mean the garden ‘closes down’!  As an amateur gardener, I am learning as I go, and this year feel I have that bit more knowledge about how things grow than I did last year.

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Spring bulbs need to be planted now while the soil is still warm.   If like me, you can’t remember where you already have some in your beds, then grow them in pots for now and once Spring arrives and those already planted out start to show above ground, then you can put in those that are in pots to fill the gaps..

Today, I wanted to share with you a few suggestions for plants which I have in my garden that look good during September/October and hopefully you might find something of interest for your own…

– SEDUM ‘AUTUMN JOY’ –

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This is a perennial which at this time of year is the most glorious pink.  It’s been flowering for a number of weeks now and back in August when it first came in to flower was literally covered each day with up to 20 butterflies and bees!!

Unlike other perennials which die off and shrivel up to nothing, these actually keep a lovely form right throughout the winter and even look good covered in snow!

 – PAMPAS GRASS –

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Pampas Grass seems to have had a bit of a revival with the flowers becoming very popular again for display inside homes.  It is quite a large plant and looks good as a specimen (planted out on its own for maximum effect) or at the back of a border.  Ours is in quite a sunny spot in the garden and what I like about it is that it will remain green all year round and no matter what the weather throws at its flowers, they always seem to recover and will remain on the plant well into Spring

– VIOLA & WINTER PANSIES – 

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These are the best little flowers for Autumn/Winter.  If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen me plant up some window boxes a few weeks ago.  I included both violas and pansies and they are flowering away.  They won’t be affected too much by frost either so a good choice

– CYCLAMEN – 

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Another winner for your garden at this time of year.  They come in lovely shades of pink, white and even red if thats more your thing.  I prefer to plant them in pots as they can be a bit finicky (you need to plant the plant just above the soil level of your pot as if you plant them at the same level as all of your other plants, they will rot

 – BOX (BUXUS) HEDGING/TOPIARY – 

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I have loved this plant ever since when I can remember!  The first 12 years of my life were spent living in what had been the Gardener’s Cottage on an old estate.  As children, we would sometimes venture into the old Walled Garden (which is my most favourite type of garden by the way) and my one abiding memory is of the pathways through that garden lined with low box hedging.  Before we had even moved in to this house, I was already planning where I could include this wonderful hedge.

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Buxus doesn’t come without its faults and ‘Box Blight’ is a condition which many gardeners can relate to.  We have a box hedge on the front of our house which is north facing and so doesn’t get a lot of sunshine.  Over the years, I have had attacks of the horrible blight but thankfully after a bit of TLC, have managed to get it to recover.

I don’t allow any dead leaves from other plants lie on it (difficult when it is planted under a Virginia Creeper which loses A LOT of leaves in Autumn).  I also keep the base of it free from the dead leaves which can gather so ensuring there is lots of air-flow. Whether it’s luck or not, this seems to have done the trick!

– RUDBEKIA ‘GOLDSTRUM’ – 

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When we had completed construction of the raised flower beds at the back of the house, I headed off to your local garden centre to pick out plants for it determined I was going to finish it in one go rather than buying bits and pieces.  At that stage, I hadn’t really an idea of a colour scheme for the garden but as I liked the look of the Rudbekia, decided to buy it.

As time has gone on, my favoured palette in the garden is pink, purple, white, blue and green so there aren’t too many plants which are in the ‘hot’ family of reds, yellows and oranges – except for the Rudbekia (and Crocosmia Lucifer!) The reason I have kept it is because it is such a reliable plant – comes back every year bigger and better with no maintenance and blooms for weeks on end with the most gorgeous yellow-orange flowers.  This plant is also known as ‘Black Eyed Susan’ and with its dark brown centre, I can see why!

TIP:  One of the best way to achieve ‘year round interest’ is to see what the garden centres are selling as regards plants for each month!!

Gardening is a labour of love and as I’ve probably said before, only put in to your garden what you have time to look after…

Enjoy your Garden x

 

2 thoughts on “Autumn Perennials”

  1. Thoroughly enjoyed reading this blog Bernie. I don’t have a garden anymore as we live in an apartment but I love looking at yours on Instagram.

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    1. Hi Maureen. So glad you enjoyed my little article. It had actually posted before I had included photos (which I’ve done now). They might just have made it a little more interesting. In some ways, I envy you not having to spend so much time gardening most of the time I love it, particularly in the Summer after a long day in the office! Maybe you have a balcony in your apartment – so still room for some pots! Bernie

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