As the night’s draw in and we sit on a darkened patio of an evening relishing the scents of the garden plants while the cooler breeze forces the leaves from the trees, we’re quite melancholy thinking of a season ending and
our beautiful annuals making their last show.
However, although spring came early this year meaning flowers have died off a little prematurely, there are many ways we can extend the season, and with the help of a heavy knitted jumper and some fingerless mittens we can carry on appreciating our gardens for months to come yet.
A popular pastime around this time of year is choosing from the cosmic collection of bulbs on offer, and as we plant them three inches deep into soil that is still frost free we envisage the generous parade of tulips and daffodils that will greet us as our gardens awaken after their sleep, yet that’s not all, for full winter colour there are plants that will flower now and ensure colour even in the coldest of weather, giving you the feel of a
fresh spring morning come rain or shine.
Dogwood is dazzling, and whilst it is adorned with green leaves in summer, as these fall, the bright bloodshot stalks stand stunningly against any background, a definite eye catcher and a must for all year round vibrancy.
Rudbeckia adds focus to any autumn plot, in a variety of shades it complements the changing seasons, giving strong flower heads that stand up to the increasing winds, and as it rises high it is flawless at the back of a border.
Anemones first imported from Holland have become a classic English garden favourite, with their long green stems, bright white petals, and eyes that seem to follow you around the lawn, they will soon become your favourite flowery friend.
Grasses are a great way to add texture and life to a hibernating garden, and the right varieties will blow in the breeze creating a joyous symphony of nocturnal noises, a popular one this time of the year is stipa tennuisima, that never sits still as its feathery blooms comfort the senses with their constant swaying.
You may think the
hydrangea is out of fashion, but there’s a reason this sturdy shrub has stood the test of time, garden centres will now sell blooming hydrangeas in colours ranging from sapphire to ruby, and the fragrant flowers will add
intrigue and depth to any perimeter.
Verbena is not only wonderful for attracting wildlife to the garden, its long blossoming life
ensures lollipops of colour, and you’ll benefit from a vase of fresh flowers up until Christmas day. I tend to dry the stems and flower heads, upside down from a beam in my office; they fill my working days with a lovely scent and when completely dry make a great pot pourri or crafted gift for a loved one.
This is just a small sample of how you can extend your September garden, yet with all the advice in the world, nothing beats donning that raincoat and taking a walk around your local garden centre to see what they
have on offer!