Yes, changes a-plenty in the garden, and not just seasonal ones. October has been a mild month despite yesterday’s frost, and tasks have proceeded unhindered. You can see the replaced pergola on this and the next photo, the main section now empty of climbing roses and clematis (yes, “Goodbye Freckles, goodbye Frances Rivis”); three new viticella clematis are arriving tomorrow, and two new bush roses re on order from David Austin for November delivery. The roses (tall and deep red ‘Falstaff’) will sit either side of the bench – you can see a rectangular space for one of them in the rejigged paving. The advantage of the viticella clematis, cut down to the ground every year, is the absence of both old and woody stems and an increasing tangle of new ones.
From the other side, you can see how the stream has been revealed again now the ferns have been removed and a selection of nominally marginal plants are being introduced instead. This looks SO different, really changing the view from this aspect. In addition, the pergola stretches seamlessly (although not strictly so) from front to back replacing both the original and the later extension down the side of the sitooterie; to create additional structural support it also continues forwards and is attached to the back of the house, so in due course one of the clematis will be flowering overhead when anyone walks this way.
Looking from the other end of the streamside and shrub border, you can see how leaf fall is becoming increasingly evident – although I did manage a major sweeping up once these photos were taken…sweeping up, but not bagging up, so let’s hope there are no stiff breezes in the offing!
The woodland continues to do its own thing:
The main borders, seen from the bothy and then ground level, are nearly ready for a good tidy-up; meanwhile, the Queen Mother roses that were in the cubic lead effect pots have finally gone to a good home:
Do you remember the ‘Spirit of the Garden’ installation at the end of the clematis colonnade? Well, a flash of inspiration on Sunday morning and it was gone – leaving a temporarily naked fence and an idea up my sleeve. In the meantime, it transpires that the neighbours who actually won this fence are finally about to replace it. I cleared the ivy off the panels two years ago in preparation for their replacement, but only two were replaced at the time. For the remainder to be replaced, a considerable amount of clearing will be required on their side so this and a new fence will transform this boundary of our garden but with no effort on our part (nearly as exciting as when they removed their leylandii around 20 years ago) – hurrah!
The woodland edge border, seen from both ends, is entering a winter lull before snowdrops and hellebores appear next year, whilst the mid-hedge is undergoing its annual haircut:
The bold borders still show some colour from salvia, rudbeckia, sedum and persicaria and have all just had yards of nasturtium pulled from them before they drop unmanageable quantities of seed. I look forward to a time when these borders have matured and the permanent plants have settled in and bulked up – for so long they seem to have been in a state of transition:
There is still colour in the cutting beds, now almost exclusively from dahlias. At the far end you can see that the 3 water butts served by the greenhouses have all now been set up as a series, fed from the now extended greenhouse and feeding into each other when the first is full. I have lost 2 or 3 feet of the cutting beds because of this but it was a case of ‘needs must’ and the arrangement should work well:
Would you like a quick peek in the greenhouse? I am still in the process of tidying it after our improvements, but even with the tomatoes gone, the extended greenhouse is satisfactorily full of seedlings and cuttings:
The blue and white border is now full of fallen leaves rather than displaced water butts:
Apart from Blush Noisette around the outside, the rose garden is currently devoid of roses and the uprights have gone, making the area look astonishingly larger and lighter. The pile of foliage is trimmings from the mid-hedge, and the beds are awaiting reconstruction following rose removal but will be filled with my anticipated November delivery of roses, which includes bush roses James Austin (pink) and Darcey Bussell (red). Bush roses instead of a framework of climbing roses will make access through this area easier and the chosen varieties will bring continual colour and fragrance throughout the summer, unlike the limited offerings of their predecessors.
Heading back towards the house, the back of the special snowdrop border has been tidied up, ferns trimmed and ivy pulled out to leave the bed clearer for the little white beauties when their time arrives once again. Here, not only does the structure of the replaced pergola stand out, but the framework of the wisteria once again begins to become evident as the leaves are gradually lost. You can see that crab apple ‘Evereste’ is still standing and still covered in its apples, despite its recent little accident!
Keeping a monthly record of the garden has proved really useful in tracking changes over the years, and proves to be particularly so during periods of rapid changes as is the case at the moment. I wonder what will have changed by the end of November? In the meantime, head over to Steve’s blog at Glebe House where other bloggers will be posting links to their gardens at the end of the month – thanks to Steve for hosting this.