My acer put out the red carpet for Autumn earlier last week, but since then the weather has been dark, damp, gloomy – and very windy. And then, suddenly, mid afternoon, we got sunshine and clear blue skies. I rushed in from the greenhouse to grab my camera, as I fear it may be the last for a while, and besides, most plants have shed their autumn glad-rags and donned their more sober winter attire. I didn’t want to miss the last of the show!
In my garden the silver birches are usually the last to change colour and lose their leaves, something that they have just started to do. This year they have overlapped with the last of the blueberries.
More surprisingly, the Magnolia has only just changed colour, but is now also losing its leaves. I think it will be all over by the end of the weekend, although it is covered in fat furry buds, promising a magnificent show next Spring.
Cercis canadensis ‘Forest Pansy’ has been another late developer this year. It was only yesterday that any leaves really showed signs of changing. Suddenly the normal deep purple of its huge heart-shaped leaves is giving way to shades of yellow and green, creating a beautiful tapestry of colour and shadow in the late afternoon sun:
I am grateful for this last “Hurrah!”, I’d been feeling rather low, a mixture of the reflective mood that this time of year puts me in and a cold. I have some hopes for even later colour, as the Oak leaved hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia) still looks exactly the same as it did two months ago, with the merest hint of red on the edge of a couple of leaves. It also looks as if one of the roses is going to try to flower yet again, but I suspect the weekend frosts, if as forecast, will put paid to that!
So, as the garden chores are nearly over, bar the sweeping up of leaves and keeping the greenhouse ticking over, my mind is turning to winter projects to keep me going until Spring. Since I lost my planting plans and plant lists in one of the many “box up everything and store it” experiences of the past few years, I think I am going to have a go at using the various tools that WordPress makes available to document what I have and what I do when – or plan to do. Dave at The Home Garden recently mentioned the idea of photographing plant tags and storing the files on line, so I might try some of that. I also foresee many more bread and baking related posts, as not only am I at that “crying out for carbs” stage of the year, I have a new cookbook…
Check out Dave’s Fall Colour Project for more images of Autumn to brighten up your day!