Life after death

Sculpture in the garden is provided by the many seedheads that are left when flowering is over. Sometimes the seedheads are just as interesting as the flowers and they last a lot longer.


Poppies leave such beautiful pepperpots behind, the flowers are so lovely but so fleeting, however the seedheads last for such a long time before collapsing. They are such interesting shapes and a beautiful addition to any border.


Allium seedheads have been around ever since early summer – what amazingly wonderful cosmic shapes they are – I love them , especially this one from Allium christophii !


Agapanthus leave  interesting drooping seedheads


the darker blue flowers that I have leave behind seedheads that are almost black, not the usual green.


Crocosmia Lucifer has such imposing seedheads making just as much of a statement as the flowers did earlier in the summer.


Another beautiful seedhead is provided by Nigella. This has a very distinctive shape and the seedheads are often seen with the flowers at the same time. Once you have this plant you will never be without it as it seeds everywhere when you leave the seedheads to admire them!

Evening primrose

Evening Primrose is another seedhead which I leave as long as possible because then I know that we will be visited by flocks of goldfinches in the winter – they just love the seeds! This means you have far too many seedlings everywhere, but they are so easy to remove if they are in the wrong place – worth it for those superbly colourful birds bringing life to the winter garden.


We have fennel by the back door, so handy for cooking, using the leaves in the summer and then waiting for the seeds to use over the winter – lovely silhouette against the sky.


We have an acer tree which turns the most amazing  red in the autumn but the seeds are the same red when they are formed earlier in the year – lovely contrast when the leaves are still green.

Stipa gigantea

One of my favourite plants is the grass, Stipa gigantea, which is so beautiful for months on end – especially so with the sun shining through the seedheads – they look like spun gold.


Phlomis fruiticosa has interesting seedheads which I always leave in place because they form overwintering habitats for ladybirds and other insects.


Another plant which has a beautiful outline against the sky is Angelica – but I don’t leave the seedheads too long or seedlings would be everywhere and these are more difficult to remove as they quickly put down a long taproot – lovely shape though.

Later in the winter a sharp frost will give added beauty to any seedheads that are still standing, just the excuse I need to get out into the garden with the camera!!

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