Shabby Chic (November End of Month View)

Another calm and bright day and thus ideal for taking photographs for this EOMV, a little earlier than usual. This is my fourth contribution to this ‘meme’ (which I finally googled to get a definition of – ‘an idea, behaviour or style that spreads from person to person within a culture’ – although I guessed the gist of it from its usage), so I am gradually building up a record of seasonal and yearly changes in my garden, something I have meant to do for many years. Thanks to Helen, the Patient Gardener, for hosting the meme.

There is not a substantial change from last month – essentially the leaves have moved from the trees to the ground, and the predominant colours are definitely now green and brown – but it still gives me such pleasure in its shabby chic way. With the loss of leaves from the trees the view has opened up a little, and here are the immediate views from the house:

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Moving through the garden, the woodland from both directions:

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Some of the main borders, virtually devoid of blooms, and the clematis colonnade with the Acer griseum and some heucheras in the foreground:

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The woodland edge border, still looking very green with the large number of ferns, hardy geraniums, rhododendrons and hellebores  – I know it will be far less green with the onset of  winter and early spring because when the snowdrops begin there is not a huge amount of leaf cover, so I suppose most of the ferns must die back although without that knowledge I couldn’t have told you that. I will of course, because of this blog, be far more observant now!

The left and right hot borders are  distinctly on the cool side now but still remarkably green, and I am reluctant to cut back any of this greenness quite yet:

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The blue-and-white border and rose garden have both made a useful contribution this year, but  although planting is complete in the latter the former still requires more plant structure in the raised part. ‘Zépherine Drouhin’ and ‘Blush Noisette’ are still displaying flowers, and there are a few tiny sprigs on the various lavender plugs I planted out in the summer:

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I shall be keeping a close watch on this border in the next few months, as this is where I have my species snowdrops, looking for the first signs of new shoots. I had tried to develop this as a largely ‘white’ border, but the hedge blocked out so much light that nothing really came of it, but the snowdrops are happy enough here. Perhaps I will look more at different greens  here in the future, or different textures …. hmm, something to think about over the winter…..

(and if anyone – PLEASE! – has advice on how to stop my text from jumping around when I upload a large number of pictures like this I would be very grateful – the asterisks do fill in the gaps but look untidy!

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14 Responses to Shabby Chic (November End of Month View)

  1. patientgardener says:

    you are right writing a blog on your garden does make you more observant. I am getting interested in species snowdrop nd wondering where I could keep them so I may need to identify a spot where they wont be disturbed too
    Thanks for joining in again this month

    • Cathy says:

      I chose this bed for my species snowdrops mainly bcause it was nearer the house so I wouldn’t need to go as far to check on their progress when it was cold! And it is completely separate from the snowdrops in the woodland edge border so I won’t get them mixed up, although many of my labels had faded and I had to do a lot of checking details and photos last year to make sure I relabelled them correctly, and there are still one or two I have had to use a process of elimination for!

  2. Christina says:

    You’ll certainly learn a lot about your garden and your feelings about it by writing a blog. Form and texture are hugely important in a garden (I think more important than colour in many ways) you might find this useful. http://myhesperidesgarden.wordpress.com/2011/12/22/gbfd-december/ or any of the GBFD (foliage day memes) Christina

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks Christina – I shall have a look at the link later. It’s strange how the possibility of focussing on form and texture in that bed wasn’t anywhere in my head until I was writing about it in the blog! Another of the unexpected bonuses of writing and sharing blogs.

  3. kate says:

    My goodness, your garden looks tidy! (And lovely.)

    I’ve certainly found that blogging has changed my garden – I went from being veg-obsessed to returning to my plantaholic roots. I think part of the reason was seeing everyone else’s lovely planting, and being green with envy….

    • Cathy says:

      Tidy? Tidy?! I must have a look at the pictures cos it doesn’t feel tidy to me, Kate – hence the shabby in the title! That’s why it is reassuring looking at fellow-bloggers’ gardens and feeling that we are all in the same position.

  4. paulinemulligan says:

    Thanks for the trip around your garden, you have so much lovely green still, that makes it look well furnished. Ferns do certainly die down, most of them anyway, but this year they have grown so huge with all the rain that we have all had. I must make sure that mine don’t swamp the snowdrops when they come through.

    • Cathy says:

      Yes, it’s stange thinking about the ferns as I just can’t visualise what leaf cover there is when the snowdrops are coming out

  5. Anna says:

    Enjoyed wandering round your late November garden Cathy which looks most tranquil. Look forward to seeing your special snowdrops. My Gunter Waldorf book has arrived – hoping to sit down with it over the weekend 🙂 Sorry but can’t help with your photo query as I use Blogger.

    • Cathy says:

      It’s so intriguing getting comments like ‘tidy’ and ‘tranquil’ about the garden – is it the objectivity, or just a rather deceitful camera?! I must admit if anyone visits our garden I would rather The Golfer showed them round as I would be too subjective and just keep pointing out its faults and limitations! Thanks for visiting and enjoy your new book (and sitting down!) – mine arrived just before we came away so I haven’t had a chance to look at it yet.

  6. hillwards says:

    “the leaves have moved from the trees to the ground” – I like it :). Your garden looks to be declining gracefully, I love the white stems of your birches.

    • Cathy says:

      Thank you – and I was just wondering if it might be a good thing for us to be declining gracefully too, but thought better of it!

  7. easygardener says:

    Thanks for letting us see your garden. While too many leaves on the ground can be annoying it is interesting to be able to see through the trees to the garden. An ideal time to see garden features like your old chimneys that come into there own at this time of year.
    About the pics – when I am putting more than one pic in the centre I use PicMonkey a free bit of software that allows you to create simple collages, including 2 pics side by side. If you click on the layouts on the left and hover over the coloured pictures you can see the layouts. You can also create your own. Very simple to use and you save the finished pic to your PC.

    • Cathy says:

      You’re welcome, and thanks for the recommendation of PicMonkey. I think that has been suggested to me before but I had forgotten the name and had started using Picassa for editing. Although I had done a couple of collages with Picassa I hadn’t thought of using it for side by side pictures – that would certainly stop the text issue as the saved jpeg would take the whole width, so thanks for that prompt. I will look at PicMonkey too as I was told that was better than Picassa – I like the idea of being able to choose the layouts. Hopefully it will reduce the potential frustration when I have a lot of pictures!!

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