Six on Saturday: Seasonal Stuff

With our first proper frost just over a week ago there have been some dramatically seasonal changes in the garden, with any remaining leaves on the witch hazels quickly changing colour before they too drop off – the one above is Hamamelis ‘Ruby Glow’. Elsewhere, leaf sweeping has suddenly become imperative!

The biggest change after the frost was, of course, the demise of the dahlias, as shown on Wordless Wednesday; with little time to spend in the garden in recent weeks it was a joy to get out in it this afternoon, albeit to cut back their blackened foliage. With nothing productive left in the cutting beds either, their contents were pulled out and added with the dahlia remains to the overflowing compost heap. In due course the beds will be weeded and raked over before being mulched with compost.

In the meantime there are other seasonal tasks to carry out, like defoliating the rest of the roses, a task begun but left unfinished when other commitments got in the way of gardening. The roses that don’t get pruned until after Christmas look skeletal and very sorry for themselves once they have been stripped of their leafy clothing:

Very unseasonal and unexpected is this pristine flowering stem of Penstemon ‘Pensham Czar’, only the second bloom to have appeared on this plant – the first was at the beginning of July and also a surprise, never yet having had any success with penstemon. Nevertheless, two blooming stems in one season can hardly be called a success…

There are also random clematis blooms here and there, but none quite so determined as C viticella ‘Margot Koster’ which sports not only a number of fresh blooms but also a whole new stem smothered in buds…

Dutifully seasonal, however, is autumn-flowering snowdrop Galanthus reginae-olgae ‘Cambridge; new last year, she produced a number of shoots, all duly munched short by who-knows-what, making her nodding white heads all the more welcome now:

Sadly, I also have the seasonal half-emptied box of bulbs glowering at me, an experience often shared the host of this Saturday meme, Jon the Propagator. Let’s visit his site and see if he has managed to plant all of his yet!

This entry was posted in Autumn, composting, cutting beds, dahlias, Gardening, Gardens, Six on Saturday, Winter and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Six on Saturday: Seasonal Stuff

  1. Olivia says:

    Thank you for sharing!

  2. tonytomeo says:

    Those sorts of clematis are so enviable. There are two that somehow survive here, but they bloom only briefly and only with a few flowers in spring. There were a few flowers through summer, but that is not typical. They dislike aridity.

  3. With such a beautiful flower, I’d definitely call the Penstemon a success! Do you defoliate your roses to prevent disease overwintering?

    • Cathy says:

      I just don’t know why there were no more blooms. Chris, as the plant has perhaps 6-8 healthy stems – perhaps I can be hopeful for next year though? And yes, exactly that for the rose defoliation

  4. janesmudgeegarden says:

    My Penstemons are flowering now as well! The clematis is gorgeous. How generous of it to still be flowering.

    • Cathy says:

      Perhaps they generally do flower this late, but It seems especially odd to have nothong between July and now. The clematis is astonishing – I hadn’t noticed the new stem until I went closer to take photographs for SoS

  5. bcparkison says:

    As full as your beds are…how do you know where to lpant new bulbs without digging up older ones.?

    • Cathy says:

      One of the reasons I don’t enjoy bulb planting, Beverley! Most of the tulips are going in pots, but there are some forthe borders so it could be an issue, especially as they prefer to be planted deeply

  6. Pauline says:

    Your Penstemon is a lovely colour, if you want a really tough one that will survive anything, go for P. Garnet, this flowers all summer for me in my heavy clay and is still flowering now. I have to plant my new bulbs in pots as I have to wait and see where there are spaces in the spring, nothing worse than chopping bulbs in half when planting new ones!

    • Cathy says:

      I have had Garnet before Pauline, and may still have a cutting or two, but never got beyond a spindly single stem. Mind you, I have made an effort to pinch out the tips of all of current cuttings so hopefully this will encourage bushier plants. I have planted alliums in pots before to pop into spaces, and might do that again this year now that you have reminded me. Unfortunately I have also ordered 50 of one of the few tulips that keeps returning which I was going to distribute through different borders, so planting those won’t be fun…🙄

  7. Anna says:

    Oh defoliating the roses must be a mammoth job in your garden Cathy with the number of roses you have! I hope that you have a helper. I think that your beautiful penstemon will really take off next year. After thinking that I don’t have an autumn flowering snowdrops I have a found a pot of ‘Cambridge’ which I bought last year as a replacement. It is way behind yours and I don’t think that it will flower this year. My pile of to be planted bulbs is glowering too 😂

    • Cathy says:

      Well, not as many roses as DA has – they defoliate throughout their site, so for me it is only a baby mammoth job and doesn’t take as long as you might think…perhaps 5 minutes per bush? I now have Barnes beginning to bloom too – and I noticed all those you kindly gave me now have a shoot – whoohoo! 😊

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