Autumn in the garden

It’s the time of year  for the last fling of summer and the start of autumn colour. Go on, add some more colour to the garden borders, pots and troughs with a choice of super plants!

Plants for colour:

The choice of plants for pots & troughs is endless…  Leucothoe Zeblid or Curly Red mixed with the grassy golden foliage of Carex ‘Everoro’ or Carex ‘Everest’ give a good show; Viola come in a range of mixed or straight colours and added to Cyclamen enhance any border or container in autumn. For the ‘wow’ factor and a bit of height, add Choisya Ternata ‘Brica’ or Skimmia Rubella both wonderful plants for border or pot. Heathers are great for autumn / winter flower and come in a range of colours. A lovely shrub for the garden or a large pot is Sarcococca Confusa, a bushy evergreen plant with deep green glossy leaves and inconspicuous, very sweetly scented flowers in mid winter. Acers are brilliant for the autumn garden and do well in pots especially the palmatum group. The lovely autumn colour can be enhanced with a carpet of Euonymus ‘Emerald n Gold’ or a bed of Cyclamen underneath.

Autumn is also the time to re-pot your existing shrubs at leaf fall. New compost and a dressing of bone meal (not for Ericaceous plants) will aid root growth and give your plant a good start next spring.

Containers: There are lots of containers to choose from! Use them on your patio or any hard landscape area. Select a good sized pot for large plants and shrubs. Get a little gravel for the bottom to help drainage. Use Ericaceous compost for the Rhododendrons and Azalea.

Now is a good time to select container-grown shrubs and trees for planting in your garden. This will allow them to be established before winter, and ready for the growing season next year. Add extra compost to the planting hole and mix well in with the surrounding soil.  Adding bone meal when planting will aid root growth for trees, herbaceous plants, bulbs and shrubs. An ericaceous feed will be needed for Rhododendron, Heathers & Azalea. Choose some shrubs that will flower next spring such as Ceanothus Repens and we have a fantastic range of Rhododendron just in.

Bulbs: Autumn is the time  to plant spring flowering bulbs and now for  container bulbs for December and Christmas flowering. Plant Hyacinth bulbs with their noses just above the compost. Dress over with decorative chips or moss. Narcissi Tete-a-Tete, Grand Soleil and Paper White may be treated in the same way. Due to summer flooding in Germany, Belgium, Holland and parts of eastern England, the bulb season is very late this year and coupled with Protocol restrictions, supply is not ideal. There will be shortages of crocus and snowdrops especially.

Lawn Care:   Autumn renovation:  On good days scarify to remove moss and thatch, give an autumn fertilizer to strengthen grass and if the ground is compacted a spiking will help.  To make life easy, use Westland Aftercut All In One Autumn which contains a compound to destroy the moss, Strengthen the grass  and build Roots. Use now when the weather is warm and there is still growth in the grass.