It seems that this November in the UK is set to become the fourth mildest on record, with a mean temperature of 10.8ºC, 1.4ºC above the 1981-2010 average. However, the below freezing overnight temperatures at the start of the week are the direct result of mild sunny days with clear skies and it is this that has clearly triggered real seasonal changes as I mentioned in my last post and may well slow down those early signs of spring that were beginning to become apparent. But hey! it is almost December whether we are in denial about the proximity of Christmas or not.
A quick ramble through my end of November garden shows the following…..
…. a fairly bare paved area behind the house, masking a very large pile of leaves behind the square pots. There are not many left on the magnolia now but the montana Clematis still retains leaves, perhaps making it harder for our usual draping of ‘cherry’ lights through the tree next month.
The progressively filling-up new shrub border, with new roses planted yesterday and bargain pots of small grasses bought yesterday in a Black Friday sale at our local garden centre placed ready for planting at ‘corners’ to define the boundary between path and bed….
The woodland, now with the Bothy at the far end and some very conspicuous ladders waiting too long to be put away…..
Even though some things are beginning to lie low for the winter others, like hellebores, ferns and rhododendrons are green and vibrant and below the surface all the ‘common’ snowdrops are bursting into life as I discovered when I worked on this end of the border.
The left and right bold borders are very dishevelled and tatty and I intend to lift existing plants and reposition them, thinning out the crocosmia and moving the geums a little further away from the edge. This will also give me the chance to see if there is anything lurking underneath various plant labels. No such problem in the bold border extension in the foreground of the right hand picture. I noticed that some of the alliums planted here only a few weeks ago have shoots well above ground level already:
And finally the rose garden with, I noticed, a few half-hearted ‘Zephirine Drouhin’ and ‘Blush Noisette’ roses still struggling on, underplanted with lavender that I think needs to be trimmed again (Christina, please advise…). I have decided to lay weed suppressant fabric and slate chippings around the roses adjacent to the bus shelter folly to the right of the picture which hopefully should enhance the overall appearance.
I seem to have neglected to photograph the snowdrop and hedge borders this month, but I have been lifting up foliage in the former and checking for shoots on the earlier snowdrops, particularly ‘Maidwell L’ which is usually the first to flower and again looks set not to disappoint.
This monthly meme is a useful record of the difference between seasons and from year to year, and I am grateful to Helen the Patient Gardener for hosting it. Do visit her blog to find links to other gardens and see what’s happening at the end of November elsewhere.