I reckon we are about 3/4 of the way through sweeping up all our leaves, when I look up into the canopy, I can see so many more leaves that are just waiting to drop into the garden. Please don’t misunderstand me, I love my trees a lot, I think they were the real reason why we bought this house. I love their age, their huge trunks, the patterns they make against the sky, watching the squirrels dashing about , leaping from branch to branch, listening to the owls that call in the night while sitting in the branches, and being able to grow clematis and roses up them so that the trees look as if they are flowering in the summer with a waterfall of colour.
Here we have the two oaks that shed their leaves onto the back lawn, the one on the left is ours and the one on the right belongs to our neighbour. These leaves are just waiting to drop.
When you come upon something in the garden, completely unexpected, are you like me, standing looking at it with a soppy grin on your face? When I put the car away in the garage this morning and started walking up the drive, I was greeted by this beautiful flower, Iris unguicularis.
So beautiful, so pristine and so unexpected in December. It is usually after Christmas when they flower here, so I wasn’t expecting to see it so soon.
I counted 5 more buds, so there should be flowers for a while now.
Something has had a bit of a nibble at this flower, even so it is still beautiful, speckled with raindrops. I think this variety is Walter Butt, I have another clump of Iris unguicularis in the back garden which is darker when it flowers and is the species, so off I went, but not a bud to be seen. Never mind, the ones in the front made me smile when I saw them, what has made you smile today?
In my previous post I mentioned that I must take some hardwood cuttings from the field maples, Acer campestre, which are in the garden, so that I can make a hedge, which hopefully can eventually be planted at the left hand edge of the woodland.
This tree has branches sweeping down to the ground so I thought it could do with a bit of pruning anyway. The books say, look for branches that are the same thickness of a pencil, ok, I found a few here so started snipping.
In just a couple of minutes I had 10 shoots that were approximately the right thickness, although some of my twigs were thicker than others. The lower side shoots were cut off ready for planting.
I decided to sacrifice just part of one of my raised beds in the veggie garden, dug a trench, in fact I needed 2, and put silver sand at the bottom to aid drainage.
There we are, 10 hardwood cuttings, my mini hedge just waiting now to be a proper hedge. That’s all I can do, now it is up to nature to do the rest! I should be able to tell you next year if they are successful or not. All it took was 15 minutes of my time and this hedge didn’t cost a penny!
The sun is shining today and the garden sparkles with colour. I always used to think that November was a wet, dull , cold month, but this year I have had to change my opinion. We normally have a lot of rain in November, but not this month, we have had a few frosts, but nothing serious, just enough to make the leaves look more interesting.
The colours in the garden this week have been absolutely amazing. I took my drive round the neighbouring village a week too soon, if I had waited they would have been far more intense, must remember for next year. For foliage day this month, I will have to come clean and admit that some of my photos – mainly of the Cornus sibirica Westonbirt – were taken 2 weeks ago, before they all blew away! They weren’t ready last month, the colour hadn’t changed, and I knew I had to photograph them before they dropped so that I would have a record.
The view from the landing window of the front drive. Cornus are showing their beautiful beetroot coloured leaves.
Flowers are few and far between at the moment, you have to really search to find the odd one nestling amongst all the foliage that really needs cutting back. Most of the colour in the garden is provided by the autumn foliage which is rapidly getting blown away with the strong winds that we are having. The most obvious flowers are the roses which are still putting out new buds, ever hopeful !
Rosa Gertrude Jekyll
….has turned various shades of yellow, gold and orange. We drove round the local lanes yesterday photographing all the beautiful colours that were around us. As each day goes by the colours are deepening and the problem is, do we wait a bit longer and risk all the leaves coming down in a gale overnight, or photograph them now while they are still on the trees?
Prickly Pear Blossom Park
We have just spent a super weekend with our son and dil at their new house between Maidenhead and Windsor. New to them that is, but in much need of renovation, they have a lot of work ahead of them, but I’m sure it will be wonderful eventually as they are a very fit and hard working couple. Their house is among others which are at the side of a lake and after a short walk we were in amongst beautiful scenery, with lots of trees around the water’s edge, such a calm, serene view of the lake.
For those not living in the UK, the weather forecasters had been predicting a serious storm, St Jude, to hit this country overnight, last night. In the early hours of this morning, I woke suddenly and there was a huge crack and a dreadful noise coming from the direction of the woodland, I automatically thought of all my old trees and hoped they were all right. With that, the light went out on the radio alarm and I knew that the electricity was now off, St Jude had arrived! The first thing I did when getting up much later, was to go into the woodland and check on all my trees, they seemed fine, thank goodness, just small branches everywhere and a thick carpet of leaves covering everything.
Taking photographs for this month’s Foliage Day was a question of dodging the showers, sometimes they were quite light but at others it was torrential rain. A gradual change is coming over the garden, a more golden tint to the leaves. Some leaves that were changing last month have almost blown away in all the wind we have had, this was the Amelanchier that I showed you last month, the leaves are nearly all gone.
Posted in News
Tagged Acer, autumn leaves, Azalea, Betula, Cherry, Cornus, Cotoneaster, epimedium, evergreens, Ferns, foliage, Horse Chestnut, Viburnum