GBFD – September and a gradual change to Autumn Colour

Its been a while since I reported on foliage in my own garden. In fact 11 months! 3 years ago we planted some new trees, 3 Chanticleer Pears, a mystery Rowan, 1 Double white Hawthorn – Crataegus laevigata Plena and 3 new Apple Trees. The Chanticleers were put in to screen a new neighbours floor to roof apex windows, complete with balcony. My family is not given to naked trips around the garden but we do like our privacy. The Chanticleers are beginning to fill out nicely, they are the first to leaf and the last to fall, with a wonderful late Autumn colour. So far though its only our Mystery Rowan which is on the turn.

Mystery Rowan

Mystery Rowan

I had ordered a Kashmir Rowan – Sorbus cashmiriana Hedl which is supposed to have white Berries and very beautiful leaves, as I planted bare root, it was not until Spring that I began to think something was not right, the leaves were plain and in the second Autumn there were lots of small orange/red berries. Clearly not a Kashmir. It did not flower this Spring, so no berries at all this Autumn. But today when its raining, grey and cold, the leaves are shining with colour.

Last Autumn's Berries

Last Autumn’s Berries

Elsewhere, I grow several golden Hops, one is placed to cover a deciduous Corkscrew Hazel – Corylus avellana ‘Contorta’ which has extremely ugly leaves, but in the winter when the catkins are caught by the low sun, I am much more happy with its placing. I cut the stems too for my version of a Christmas Tree.

Golden Hop on Twisted Hazel

Golden Hop – Humulus lupus ‘Aureus’ winding through Corkscrew Hazel

Another plant that really comes into its own in the Autumn is Leucothoe, I am fairly sure this one was originally labelled ‘Royal Ruby’, a non native, originating in the USA, commonly called Switch Ivy and Dog Hobble. I wonder why either common name came about?

Looking through the window on a wet morning

Looking through the window on a wet morning

Lastly, as its too wet to go further afield with my camera today, in the group at the bottom is an unnamed Oxalis, purchased at Hughenden Manor, where they have it underplanted in tubs of Heuchera, I may be unleashing a thug but in the meantime am enjoying its dainty leaves.

Unnamed Oxalis

Unnamed Oxalis

With grateful thanks to Christina, for hosting Garden Bloggers Foliage Day, GBFD. Please take a look at Christina’s adventurous garden changes and other folks contributions too.

Happy GBFD!

44 thoughts on “GBFD – September and a gradual change to Autumn Colour

  1. Hi, thanks for joining this month. I like your autumn tints. It is annoying when what you get isn’t what you thought, especially when it’s a tree, you’re not likely to dig that up to take back, but it isn’t fair when you’ve carefully chosen a particular cultivar.

    • The supplier gave me a refund, over a year after planting, so they were very fair.Its been on a dogs leg since then. I almost wish it would fail of its on accord as digging up any tree is incredibly wasteful. We shall see what next Spring brings.

  2. It may not be the expected rowan, but it’s a very beautiful one. Hopefully next Spring will bring better conditions for flowering. It’s pouring down here too.. I’m forcing myself into an optimistic frame of mind!

    • Yes this blooming rain! I know its good for a garden, but I wish it would come at night time. My neighbour tells me next week will be much drier. I had one of the River Cottage emails today, where Hugh FW, says he prefers the rain as then there will be better mushrooms. So there is always an upside!

    • Its getting there Tina, early days in my garden. We back onto fields where a previous owner grew Christmas Trees, a few were left and are now about 30 feet tall a lot of birds roost in them, but the relentless green always looks better with some Autumn colour in front.

    • I wanted that particular Rowan as it reminded me of a wonderful garden I worked in for seven years, the owners moved away and I moved on, but that tree was always a favourite with me and flocks of birds. I shall have to look for another one and plant it elsewhere in my garden!

    • Thanks, I haven’t got the underplanting right by a long way, I wanted a frothy mix of whites, trying to recreate summer hedgerows, but I am enjoying the process of getting there.

    • I hope so Julian, my daughter has just finished a creative writing masters and is enthralled by language, routes and names and now seems far better read than me as I forget to much, but I know she would enjoy these names too.

      • How wonderful to have a daughter enthralled by language, and its origins and use…I never used to be interested in this, but since blogging I’ve started to notice more, and being inquisitive, explore. I’m fortunate to have a little bro. who, like your daughter, lives his life in words and writings – when you visit, in case I forget to point it out, you must read his Gelli based poem, (hanging in the WC!) which just yesterday I was glancing at, and realised for the first time included rhyming last words in every verse but in an irregular pattern. He’d pointed out to me years ago, that the number of syllables reduced by one in each line of the several verses….something that I’d never noticed, and which also has a special name…which I forgot ages ago! Hidden meanings, skills or ideas which the casual reader nearly always misses!
        BW,J

      • I am really looking forward to our trip Julian, not sure what type of rhyme that is either – I’ll ask my daughter and I shall be looking in your WC!!

  3. It really annoys me when I buy plants in good faith, expend a lot of time and care in the choice and also in making sure it is planted well and cared for and then find I have been sold something else. We bought an Egremont Russet (we thought) and waited a couple of years before it had any blossom. The apples were small, prone to disease and were not russet at all. The skin was smooth and yellow with red patches. We got rid of it eventually.
    Lovely foliage photos!

    • The Egremont Russet is a wonderful apple Clare, what a shame. One of my apples (and that was entirely my fault) has 2 deep cankers, where straps rubbed on the stem. We have been enjoying a Spotted Woodpecker dig at the sunken stem parts though. That tree will never reach old age, the trunk is too damaged and this year also produced lots of small apples although for the life of me I can’t currently think of its name, but I think the apple size was mainly due to the early very dry period we had and not enough water. My husband has it lined up for firewood!

      • Poor tree! Our apples are small this year as we had such a dry July. We also had a lot of aphid damage and lost most of the new growth of leaves. We were away for a week in July during the dry weather and when we got back had a lot of work trying to repair the damage. We will try again with an Egremont Russet and go to a different nursery.

    • Thanks Helen, we have been here 15 years and I wish I had planted more trees sooner as this isn’t a forever house, so I know we will not see some of them into maturity. And some of my original plantings of shrubs and perennials have long since gone. But then being wiser after the event is all part of life!

  4. I love all of the trees you have chosen. They have lined the entrance of the main street here with Chanticleer Pears and they do look lovely (as well as keeping a very tidy shape)
    The oxalis and heuchera look really nice together.
    The rowan looks lovely, and while disappointing to not have the tree you wanted, at least it was free 🙂

    • They are often used in street plantings over here too, I needed a screen quickly and their neat shape means they will not intrude on next door. Plus they were affordable as size 10/12 standards. My first choice would of been standard Hornbeams, but I shall have to wait and plant those at our next house when we eventually move.

  5. Julie, nice to see what’s happening around your yard these days. Looking wonderful. I had Oxalis at my old house where it was very shady with heavy, clay soil. It was a passalong plant that I loved but when I offered some to a friend she thought I had lost my mind–invasive in her yard. Hope you’ll enjoy yours.

    • I tried to capture a photo of the whole plant draped in golden hop but I did not want to get my camera wet. If the hop stays lime green its lovely but as its prone to bit of mildew it can look tatty till its cut back and then its off again with new growth.

    • I am pleased with them Amelia, especially in late Autumn when they colour really well. The Spring blossom is really pretty and they were relatively cheap to put in. I remember you asked about the blossom and pollinators, which I am still unsure about as my garden can be quite breezy, but I am hopeful for next Spring.

  6. Julie your rowan looks like mine which are the common native rowan, Sorbus aucuparia, was the cultivar grafted onto species root stock, if so it could be that the species took over, it is very irritating when this happens, at least you got a refund, even worse when you can’t get a refund, anyway you have a nice tree lined pathway there, Frances

    • I am fairly sure too, that this is our native Rowan, Frances. I bought this bare root, its not grafted and think it was just muddled in at the Nursery, it was delivered labelled as a Kashmir and yes they were very fair and gave me a full refund over a year later. A few years ago I worked for a family who told me it was unlucky to cut one down, I’ve looked that up recently and according to various googled sites, that originates in Scotland and is linked to the red berries and Faeries. Have you heard this?

      • yes I have heard of this story ‘myth’??? or whatever to call it, it is not as far as I know taken seriously, but some people enjoy ‘playing along’, if you prefer to abide by the story, could you replant it somewhere else in your garden or pass it along to someone else, as far as I know re-planting is allowed,
        I think the bad luck is like the saying, if you break a mirror you have 7 years bad luck, or alternatively if you hang a horseshoe over your door you ward off evil spirits, my Mum went mad once when as a young child I picked and brought some ‘may’ into the house, she took it out and would not have it inside, she said it was unlucky to have it in the house, I think it was buddleia not sure though, I thought I’d picked her a love bunch of flowers 🙂 it really comes down to your strength of believe in these stories, Frances

      • I had to laugh Frances at the flowers for your mum, I can remember thinking I was doing a lovely thing only to be sent packing with the flowers too! I’m not superstitious and the Rowan may well get moved further down my garden this winter.

    • Thank you so much Marian, thats an answer I would not have guessed at. Its far too easy to forget that so many of our non-native garden plants still grow in the wild.

    • Its early days here for Autumn colour Donna, its crisp this morning and a chill in the air, leaves are starting to fall too but hopefully Autumn will span over a long time before we get to winter.

  7. Love your choice of trees. If I had the space I would be delighted to plant them. Too bad about the ID mix up, and rather annoying. You should be able to expect a garden center to know its business. The Golden Hops is a lovely vine.

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