Fifty Shades Of Purple







The asters are now blooming and, together with the verbena, have altered the balance of the view.

Aside from that, things have moved. Surely not, I hear you say. As intended, the infamous azalea has relocated from centre stage to bottom right. It’s less of a sore thumb down there and I hope will seem better integrated even when if it blooms. Time will tell. The other change I planned last month was the splitting and redistribution of the Hakone grass. I do prefer it where it is now. Plus it’s freed up more space for flowering plants on the lower level, where I can appreciate them closer up. I had three huge clumps of the grass left over to haul up on to the bank and they already look the business cascading down the slope.

A further thing to notice is that there is now more house wall on show. The conifer in the far corner was growing way too big. In another season it would have reached the roof. Viewing the garden from the sitting room window was already becoming a challenge. Fearing that negotiating skills might have been required, I tried to sell it to Mike as an opportunity to play with one of his big boy’s toys but in the end he used a pruning saw and still had the tree down in 20 minutes flat.



Hamamelis ‘Diane’


In its place, a witch hazel. For now. I got it half price. The most likely reason being that the main stem is bent. We tried a stake but it looked hideous, so for the next year or so it will be supported thus. In bondage. The day it was planted it had bright red autumn leaves, until a squirrel or a deer appeared on the scene and chewed off all its nuts. I just hope the flower buds have remained unscathed.

You can see from the old stump how close to the house wall the conifer had been planted. The witch hazel is not much further away and once it has straightened up I will probably have to move it. But it is slow growing and in the meantime I will have flowers where I can get to them easily in January and, confined within the walls, a pool of delicious scent.



I have spread the asters around a bit. The far end of the bed is looking better now with a focus on autumn colour. At the beginning of the year it was mostly just a tangle of ivy here.



Verbena bonariensis ‘Lollipop’ and Rudbeckia ‘Little Goldstar’

The rudbeckia appeared in the mid-month bloomers post. I got it at B&Q. Waiting for Mike to buy screws or some such and to relieve the boredom (they say a woman takes forever to choose..) I wandered into regions horticultural. There was a stunning display of these two plants and I couldn’t resist the combo. You can imagine the look on Himself’s face when he returned to his trolley and found the rudbeckia perched atop his DIY essentials.



Sempervivum ‘Terracotta Baby’

Following the success of the sempervivum-in-the wall experiment I have acquired two more.



So is it time to leave the terraces alone now? Remember, put the tools back in the shed and throw away the key?

Not quite.



The top terrace, which doesn’t really show up in the usual view, is particularly uninspiring.

There is nothing left in bloom bar the clump of asters plonked in there because I had nowhere else to put them. But the worst problem here is that Lily of the Valley has completely taken over. All summer long I’ve been pulling up shoots whose roots pervade the bed from one end to the other. The next job is to dig the whole lot out. Some of the Lily of the Valley will go back in, but this time sunk into the ground in pots to hopefully restrict their spread. In the process I can split the geums and Snow In Summer and generally regain a little order. There are some spring bulbs ready to go in there too.


Nothing else for it then. Onwards…


Linking up with Helen’s End Of Month View (here) at The Patient Gardener’s Weblog. Click through to find out what other gardeners are up to this month.