We’ve finally had a day of continuous rain, hurray! The garden is very grateful for it and is looking a lot more perky as a result. Shame I was driving down the motorway (sitting in queues) in it though. Early mornings are starting to be a bit chilly, creating some fine views of misty sunrises and dew-covered flowers. We are definitely relaxing into an autumnal mood. There has been much leisurely browsing of bulb catalogues, on-going seed gathering, harvesting the final courgettes and even a start on leaf raking. Let’s have a look at some of the late season pretties from the garden for The Propagator’s Six on Saturday .
Here we go then:
1) I love ‘Amante’!
Last year my Sarah Raven order for Salvia ‘Amante’ was a casualty of supply failure resulting from pandemic chaos. This year I ordered it again the day I received her summer catalogue. However, they still took three months to arrive and so are only just starting to flower, but they’ve made good strong plants and I really do love them. There is something very appealing about the colour, with that gradation from cerise to purple down the neck of the flower, not to forget those attractive dark calyxes and cute contrasting anthers.
2) Rudbeckia ‘Cherry Brandy’
As with many things this year, Rudbeckia ‘Cherry Brandy’ has been slow to get going from seed. It is finally looking good for autumn, but I am hoping that they will overwinter so that they become substantial plants for next year.
3) Leonotis nepetifolia
Last time I grew leonotis leonurus they grew very, very tall and flowered … not a bit! I ripped them out that autumn in disgust, only to read later that they can survive UK winters, with a little luck. I should have given them a chance. Live and learn! This time I’ve grown Leonotis nepetifolia, which is definitely an annual. However, it is flowering freely already and making me very happy. I adore the furry orange flowers. They do evoke thoughts of lions, with their mane-like whorls!
Such a great name, I just had to use it! Of course, these flowers are now properly called Hesperantha. These are Hesperantha coccinea ‘Major’ and are supposed to be great vertical autumnal accents. Why are mine so floppy then? Maybe they need to be bigger, self-supporting clumps?
5) Aster time
Dewy-eyed asters at this time of year look wonderful! These are a Symphyotrichum novae-angliae cross and have grown to nearly 1.5 metres this year. This view is at head height!!
Sedums are all buzz suddenly. They’ve been colouring up nicely over the last month, but yesterday I looked down and saw that they are covered in insects (mostly honey bees in this shot). This is the ubiquitous Hylotelephium ‘Herbstfreude’, formerly known as Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ … which it truly is!
Well, unfortunately I’ve been pinged. Since we’ve been keeping strictly to the Covid hygiene and distancing rules at work, I am fairly confident it’ll be fine. My tests have been negative so far, but I am isolating. I expect to get a lot of gardening done in the coming week!
Meanwhile, remember that an array of other seasonal gardening goodies can be found via comment links on Jonathon’s post.
Keep well and have a good weekend.