Garden Notes

Create autumnal colour in your garden

Published on 14 October 2009

Colour what colour? Your gardens should be ablaze with late summer and new autumn colour – if it isn’t something is wrong and you need to make plans. My garden is currently a wonderful contrast between new golden and chestnut autumn leaf colour of Acers, red rose hips, the violet flowers of Penstemon, Asters and Fuchsia and the second flowering of red Geums.

There’s no excuse, either take yourself off to the garden centre or plan by taking cuttings from friends. Penstemon and Fuchsia are easy to reproduce by taking cuttings. Cut a non-flowering stem just were the stem begins to become less supple. Cut the stem just below a pair of leaves (where the hormones of the plant are most active). Strip the leaves above the cut to allow for approx. 3-6cm stem, which is pushed into moist cutting compost. Put in a cold frame or in a sheltered position in the garden, watch and wait.

If you don’t feel confident about growing your own, go and look for a fabulous Japanese Acer. Most are very slow growing, beautiful in spring with bright green or plum purple new leaves, bamboo like and floaty in summer and golden and red leaves in the autumn.

My favourite is Acer Sango-Kaku, which not only has all these qualities but also looks stunning in the winter with branches going from, red and orange through to gold tips, rather like a dogwood. What more could you ask for?

Happy gardening.

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