Things Are Hotting Up..


The cone atop the bird table in yesterday’s early morning mist.

At risk of incurring Mike’s wrath, the photograph that just had to be taken on the way to an appointment for which we were already late. To add further insult to injury a road was closed necessitating that Devon classic, the 10-mile-out-of-your-way diversion down single track lanes with grass growing up the middle, a land where pheasants reign supreme. Five minutes through this quest into the unknown the diversion signs fizzle out. Navigation on the phone? No signal.

As we pull up at a junction a miraculous two bars. For once it is enough. Sat Nav suggests a turn to the right. In the exact same instant I impart this critical piece of information, Mike turns left.

“What did you do that for?!”

“There was a bloomin’ great tractor coming up behind me, I had no choice!”

A rapid about turn in the entrance to someone’s drive.

At least there was an excuse for being late.


Acer shirasawanum 'Moonrise'


Acer shirasawanum ‘Moonrise’

Autumn started on a slow burn. It’s been warm for the time of year and, until a couple of nights ago, no hint of frost. Leaves have been slow to colour up. I love this acer’s subtle mottled tones and even more the shape of each leaf, like a little chubby hand or paw. Apparently next Spring the new foliage will emerge bright red. And all the better for this latest acquisition being a bargain at half price.




With mist and cobwebs come fungi. I am no fungi expert so absolutely no idea what this is. Pretty though, huh?


Anemanthele lessoniana


Anemanthele lessoniana, the Pheasant’s Tail grass. Planted as a foil for the Rudbeckia, it’s taking on a tinge of red.


Pseudowintera colorata 'Mount Congrieve'


Pseudowintera colorata ‘Mount Congrieve’. New Zealand Pepper Tree.

Not just for Chri autumn, this slow growing evergreen shrub has red tints all year. Possibly an acquired taste as the yellow tinged leaves do tend to have you reaching for the acid drench but, no, this is how it comes. It provides the perfect bit of structure to the hot border and there will be more. Those shoots have cuttings written all over them don’t you think?




The tapestry of foliage colour on the lower slopes of the bank. Cornus, Enkianthus, Davidia on the top row. The bright yellow leaves of Hydrangea petiolaris. And centre stage, Acer ‘Osakazuki’. It will turn scarlet red over the next week or so.




Cornus kousa ‘Satomi’ a couple of days ago..


Cornus kousa 'Satomi'


Cornus kousa ‘Satomi’ yesterday. Two colder nights have really brought the colour out.


Cornus kousa 'Satomi'


Cornus kousa ‘Satomi’, late afternoon light


Coprosma 'Fire burst'


Coprosma ‘Fire burst’

A new one to me but another half price bargain. The red colouration should last all winter. It’s marginally tender so best against a south facing wall.


Have you warmed up enough yet? No?




Our inherited (NoID) mature acer at the bottom of the lawn. A sickly yellow when shaded by those ugly old beech trees. Now, with the benefit of light, coming into its own. Leaves on fire.


Hamamelis-x-intermedia 'Diane'


Hamamelis-x-intermedia ‘Diane’


Geranium sanguineum striatum


Geranium sanguineum striatum


Enkianthus campanulatus


Enkianthus campanulatus


Shall we say Autumn’s now arrived??

Linking to Christina at My Garden of the Hesperides for Garden Bloggers’ Foliage Day.


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2017-10-26T10:35:34+00:00October 22nd, 2016|Tags: |


  1. pbmgarden October 22, 2016 at 12:56 pm - Reply

    Jessica, your travel detour story made me smile. I live in a pocket where two bars is an achievement, though great coverage is all around us. Love the pattern and color of Coprosma ‘Fire burst’. Is it a tree or shrub? The fungi and moss photo is wonderful. susie.

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 7:53 pm - Reply

      It’s a shrub, growing to about five feet in height. Hardy down to -5C. Even in the south west of England that might be a challenge and I’ll have to be careful where I put it. Might give it some additional protection this year as I’ll be planting it out so late.

  2. CherryPie October 22, 2016 at 12:59 pm - Reply

    The colours are delightful 🙂

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 7:54 pm - Reply

      Thanks. It’s a good year for autumn colour.

  3. stephanie young October 22, 2016 at 1:26 pm - Reply

    such a lovely variety of fall colours in your world….you’ve done just a magnificent job of creating that perfect year round colour! Kudos!!!

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 8:02 pm - Reply

      Thanks Steph. Many of the plants are relatively new so I’m looking forward to seeing how it develops over the next few years.

  4. Brenda October 22, 2016 at 1:42 pm - Reply

    Your colors are gorgeous Jessica. I love the fungi photo–maybe it’s a turkey tail, but I’m no expert either.

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 8:07 pm - Reply

      I was quite surprised to see the fungus because it’s been quite dry here recently. But deep in the woodland I suppose it never really dries out, the moss kind of proves that.

  5. bittster October 22, 2016 at 2:14 pm - Reply

    Autumn seems like such a long gentle season in the UK with waves of color and gentle rains all along. Here we seem to get it all at once with or without a blast of arctic cold. I think I much prefer yours.

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 8:10 pm - Reply

      It isn’t always like this but good when it does happen. At this rate I might even be persuaded that Autumn is OK.

  6. justjilluk October 22, 2016 at 3:23 pm - Reply

    Just beautiful.

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 8:11 pm - Reply

      Thanks Jill.

  7. AnnetteM October 22, 2016 at 5:53 pm - Reply

    Your Autumn colours are stunning and captured so well in your photographs. A lovely post.

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 8:19 pm - Reply

      Thanks Annette. The cold nights have really made a difference now. The leaves have been falling like rain today.

  8. Susan Garrett October 22, 2016 at 6:42 pm - Reply

    Love the fungi and the bank looks wonderful.

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 8:20 pm - Reply

      The light has changed dramatically this week. With the colder temperatures as well it really does feel like Autumn now.

  9. Christina October 22, 2016 at 9:42 pm - Reply

    Hi Jessica, I really enjoyed seeing your autumn garden, so different from what mine looks like now. All the beautiful reds, burgundies, yellows, purples, a typical beautiful English autumn color scheme. My favorite photo is the one with Acer ‘Osakazuki’. What a tapestry of colors in this image.
    Here in my garden the predominately colors are green and brown. Green because it is not chilly enough for the leaves to turn yellow or red and brown from the leaves being dried up from our relentless summer heat with very hot Santa Ana Winds that continue on well into autumn. Right now we have 31 Celsius! Will Autumn ever cool down?
    Warm regards,

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 8:37 pm - Reply

      I do struggle with the cold and often envy you your climate but relentless heat is too much. For all of us and for different reasons the range of plants we can successfully grow appears to be reducing.

  10. bumbleandme October 22, 2016 at 9:50 pm - Reply

    Some beautiful colours there. Fingers crossed this glorious weather holds. X

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 8:40 pm - Reply

      Forecast is good! I might even reach the end of the planting with a following (light!) wind.

  11. Julieanne October 22, 2016 at 10:09 pm - Reply

    Love that Cornus kousa ‘Satomi’. Great shape & colour. Autumn has been a little slow in coming, but in the last week it has definitely arrived.

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 8:43 pm - Reply

      Definitely. There is a real chill in the air now.

  12. Jennifer October 22, 2016 at 10:32 pm - Reply

    Absolutely, positively beautiful, your plants and your photos, that is all I can say. 🙂

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 8:44 pm - Reply

      Thanks Jennifer. Bittersweet though, as the plants are all on their way out.

  13. Linda aka Crafty Gardener October 22, 2016 at 11:39 pm - Reply

    Beautiful selection of foliage, love the fall colours.

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 8:46 pm - Reply

      Stunning aren’t they. The natives are still to come but the beech trees etc. are more subtle. No vivid reds like your maples.

  14. Kris P October 22, 2016 at 11:46 pm - Reply

    Your autumn garden is a lovely thing. I was immediately enamored with the Pseudowintera, which looks like something that should grow here, although I’ve never seen it. We have precious little in the way of fall color and none of that capable of turning color has seen fit to do so yet. However, we do share the Coprosma ‘Fire Burst’ – luckily for me, it doesn’t need cold to show its colors off. Your mystery fungi may be Trametes versicolor (not that I’ve ever seen that anywhere but in photos).

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 8:52 pm - Reply

      I’d never heard of Pseudowintera before seeing it at the nursery where I bought it. Couldn’t resist the colours though. I looked up Trametes versicolor, you’re spot on I reckon. Thanks Kris.

  15. kate@barnhouse October 23, 2016 at 8:42 am - Reply

    Glowing autumn colours are so heart warming, aren’t they? I love your combinations and selections of plants, so many like the Phormium/cornus are unusual and so inspring. The pepper tree rings a bell, does it have colourful winter berries?

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 10:44 pm - Reply

      I haven’t seen berries on mine but they’re supposed to be red going on black. Perhaps next year! Thanks Kate.

  16. Rosie October 23, 2016 at 9:13 am - Reply

    Your travel detour struck a chord as only the other day I ask the very same question when a right turn should have been taken not a left and we spent ages trying to find somewhere to turn on a road that had high hedge on ether side. Autum is definitely here now, you have some wonderful colour in your garden:)

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 10:49 pm - Reply

      It’s so easy to get lost on country roads, with or without diversions! Autumn is very definitely here. I should start thinking about tender plants.

  17. ginaferrari October 23, 2016 at 9:18 am - Reply

    Such stunning photographs that really capture the changing seasons. I love that fungi, they look like a frilly petticoat.

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 10:52 pm - Reply

      They do! I now discover it’s called a Turkey Tail, which is another good name for it. Thanks Gina.

  18. ourfrenchoasis October 23, 2016 at 10:06 am - Reply

    Beautiful photos. I love the rich colours of Autumn and finally here in SW France the leaves are turning and things are looking beautiful. Yesterday, I did the same thing, we were five minutes late, quite a normal state of affairs, but I simply had to pull over and take a photo, there were screams of “No, we don’t have time” from the back seat, but you know when there’s a photo that has to be taken there is always time!! Have a lovely Sunday x

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 10:57 pm - Reply

      Usually such an opportunity arises when there is no camera to hand so this one wasn’t going to be missed. I love the way the spiders’ webs were picked out by the moisture in the air.

  19. Caro October 23, 2016 at 10:08 am - Reply

    Mmmm, toasty! At this time of year I’m really very pleased that I live in England. Great planting, Jessica!

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 10:59 pm - Reply

      By next month though I’m ready to emigrate. Thanks Caro.

  20. derrickjknight October 23, 2016 at 12:12 pm - Reply

    Wonderful rewards from all your hard work

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 11:02 pm - Reply

      Thanks Derrick. It’s good to be getting some Autumn colour into the garden.

  21. Val October 23, 2016 at 12:44 pm - Reply

    Beautiful – all! Our acers are bursting with colour at the moment and you’ll enjoy the moonrise one when it does its thing, I’m sure. The fungi seems to be something called Turkeytail. There’s info about it here:

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 11:25 pm - Reply

      I was pleased to get ‘Moonrise’ planted today after a couple of days of wandering around deciding where to put it. It’s gone into the woodland edge, after clearing away another load of brambles. It’s lost all its leaves now, but plenty of buds for next year.. I hope!
      Thanks for the link, yes the fungi is definitely Turkey Tail. Most apt!

  22. Linda from Each Little World October 23, 2016 at 3:53 pm - Reply

    Most definitely arrived!

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 11:30 pm - Reply

      And all too fleeting, already we’re disappearing under a carpet of leaves.

  23. annie_h October 23, 2016 at 6:54 pm - Reply

    Such great photos, certainly warmed me up. That Cornus is so lovely and as for the Enkianthus truly glowing. Such colours at this time of year, great to stop and take some pictures

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 11:34 pm - Reply

      The colours are really good but mostly on the ‘ornamentals’. The beeches etc. in the wood seem to be losing their leaves without changing colour as much as last year. Strange isn’t it.

  24. Anna October 23, 2016 at 9:25 pm - Reply

    Oh I was feeling slightly chilly until I read your post Jessica and am now as warm as toast. Such glowing colour. Isn’t autumn fabulous?

    • Jessica October 23, 2016 at 11:42 pm - Reply

      It is, can’t quite believe some of the colours this year. The Enkianthus has never been this good. I just wish it could last a bit longer.

  25. germac4 October 24, 2016 at 2:59 am - Reply

    Lovely autumn colours, and the first photo is a stunner…maybe worth the 10 miles out of your way. We have a new Persian Ironbark small tree, and I’m hoping it will have autumn colours like some of yours. (Cornus Kousa Satomi)

    • Jessica October 25, 2016 at 8:19 pm - Reply

      Parrotia persica, it looks lovely. It’s apparently related to witch hazels and they are colouring up really well here. I wonder what the cockatoos will make of it..? 🙂

  26. Pauline October 24, 2016 at 7:06 am - Reply

    You have fantastic autumn colours, love the photo of your bank with all its different colours and textures! The change has been amazing this year, the weather must have been just right to cause all the wonderful colours to appear, I just hope they stay for a while and aren’t blown away in a puff of wind!

    • Jessica October 25, 2016 at 8:23 pm - Reply

      If anything the bank has got even better since that photo. I wish it looked like this all year, but then I suppose we’d take it all for granted. As it is I’m obliged to go outside every day and just look at it, while it’s still here.

  27. ontheedgegardening October 24, 2016 at 9:03 am - Reply

    It is all looking gorgeous!

    • Jessica October 25, 2016 at 8:25 pm - Reply

      Thanks Gill. This year I’m starting to think, for the first time, I might be getting somewhere. If slowly.

  28. Wendy October 24, 2016 at 11:30 am - Reply

    Some beautiful autumn colours. There’s been plenty of sunshine here to show them off this year. I love the fungi. I wish I knew more about the different types, too.

    • Jessica October 25, 2016 at 8:28 pm - Reply

      The colours certainly look dramatic against a bright blue sky. But the evening light has been fantastic too this year. Gosh, I think I might be coming to like autumn (remind me of this in November..).

  29. Sarah October 24, 2016 at 4:34 pm - Reply

    There is so much warmth in your garden, what an amazing display Jessica.

    • Jessica October 25, 2016 at 8:32 pm - Reply

      Thanks Sarah. The colours are better than I’ve ever seen them this year. I love the orangey reds, they really do add warmth.

  30. Chloris October 24, 2016 at 6:49 pm - Reply

    You have designed your garden with some stunning autumn colour. I love the cornus. Acer ‘ Osakazuki’ is one of my favourites.

    • Jessica October 25, 2016 at 8:42 pm - Reply

      ‘Osakazuki’ is supposed to be the deepest red of any acer and I’ve no reason to doubt it. My tree is a bit flat, it lost its leader somewhere along the way.

  31. Jessica October 24, 2016 at 7:46 pm - Reply

    Torrington Tina said (via email):
    Looking fabulous, you have planted and cared for some beauties and it is wonderful to see such a variety of gorgeous colours. Autumn is really upon us but about two weeks later than The Lakes – I think we got summer for a bit longer down here.

    • Jessica October 25, 2016 at 8:46 pm - Reply

      Thanks TT. The cornus and davidia came with us when we moved, I’d kept them going for three years in huge pots. Their relief at being released is obvious!

  32. Sue C. October 24, 2016 at 11:01 pm - Reply

    What wonderful colours and such variety. That fungi is fabulous.

    • Jessica October 25, 2016 at 8:49 pm - Reply

      The fungi is fascinating. It’s now changed in tone to deep brown but the stripes are still much in evidence. I find them quite weird.

  33. Jo October 25, 2016 at 2:00 pm - Reply

    Some gorgeous colours in your post. I enjoyed your last post about Boscastle too and nice to see Widemouth Bay, we usually stay on the north coast when we visit Cornwall and always include a visit to both these places.

    • Jessica October 25, 2016 at 8:53 pm - Reply

      Thanks Jo. I hoped you’d find that last post, I remember your holidays to this part of the world. It’s a glorious stretch of coastline isn’t it, beautiful on a still sunny day but so full of drama when the weather turns.

  34. snowbird October 25, 2016 at 11:09 pm - Reply

    Way to go! What a beautiful autumn garden….after all your endless battles, clearly you have this resounding

    • Jessica October 26, 2016 at 8:36 pm - Reply

      Thanks D. It’s getting there. Autumn is relatively easy. It’s Spring I struggle with, sans bulbs!

  35. Beth @ PlantPostings October 26, 2016 at 1:52 am - Reply

    You have some gorgeous color in your garden, for sure! Love the New Zealand Pepper Tree. Wasn’t familiar with that one before. Wow! Gosh, your terraced hill garden that you’ve worked so diligently to create looks fabulous! Cheers!

    • Jessica October 26, 2016 at 8:40 pm - Reply

      Thanks Beth. The Pepper Tree was a bit of love at first sight having seen it on a nursery bench. It really stood out with its colours. I just hope it makes it through the winter.

  36. Diana Studer October 26, 2016 at 10:57 pm - Reply

    Oh, sigh … it does look very good!

    • Jessica October 29, 2016 at 11:15 am - Reply

      Thanks Diana. I don’t usually enjoy autumn much. This year it’s very pretty! And the weather has been good which makes a huge difference.

  37. Caroline October 27, 2016 at 10:55 am - Reply

    I’ve so enjoyed your garden this past year, watching it change through the seasons, and having been inspired to get back to my own little patch of green in the spring. A fall down some stairs a few years back has meant I can only garden for a short time before the pain sets in and I am forced to stop. Although I do not have your green fingers! I’m a big fan of fungi and love finding it growing in my garden, especially fairy rings! I spotted one a few weeks back and although tempted, I didn’t step into it!

    • Jessica October 29, 2016 at 11:17 am - Reply

      Oooh, I’m intrigued. What happens if you step into a fairy ring?

  38. Christina October 27, 2016 at 12:24 pm - Reply

    Jessica, please excuse my late comment (I’ve not been turning the pc on much while I’ve been sick and I can’t seem to leave comments from the iPad. I just loved this post and not just for the wonderful foliage colour. Your Cornus kousa is an amazing colour, such a good small tree for all seasons. Thank you so much for contributing this month.

    • Jessica October 29, 2016 at 11:20 am - Reply

      Christina, no worries, I’m sorry you’ve been unwell and hope you are now fully recovered. The Cornus is probably my favourite tree. With its blooms, fruit and autumn colour it looks fabulous from Spring right through to November.

  39. linda October 27, 2016 at 7:23 pm - Reply

    Hi Jessica…
    Lovely Fall tour of your beautiful shrubs…
    I am always amazed at your variety…
    I really should plant more shrubs…and get them 1/2 off!
    Enjoy the rest of your week…
    I have an apple pie bread in the oven…damp…windy…rainy here…
    Linda :o)

    • Jessica October 29, 2016 at 11:23 am - Reply

      I splashed out a bit at that sale, but shrubs are expensive so reckon I got a good deal. There will be more here too, mainly because they cover a lot of ground and rarely need much attention!

  40. Cathy October 29, 2016 at 2:50 pm - Reply

    Lots of lovely colours – and sometimes humble geraniums can really surprise us with their colouration, can’ t they?

    • Jessica October 29, 2016 at 9:08 pm - Reply

      Lots of them have coloured up this year. I even have a bright red geum too, never seen that before!

  41. restlessjo October 29, 2016 at 10:13 pm - Reply

    We don’t seem to be alone in admiring the foliage 🙂 🙂

    • Jessica October 30, 2016 at 10:32 pm - Reply

      I could come to love autumn I think.

  42. casa mariposa October 30, 2016 at 1:51 am - Reply

    I love all the fall color! So beautiful! 🙂

    • Jessica October 30, 2016 at 10:35 pm - Reply

      It’s been good this year, the weather has been perfect. Next year no doubt we’ll be back to rain and soggy leaves!

  43. Peter Herpst November 4, 2016 at 2:10 pm - Reply

    Autumn has definitely arrived in all it’s finery. Glorious foliage and a wonderful time of year.

    • Jessica November 4, 2016 at 9:03 pm - Reply

      It is a wonderful time of year. If only it lasted longer. And wasn’t followed by winter.

  44. Piddlewick November 6, 2016 at 7:37 pm - Reply

    Absolutely stunning photographs, as ever. 🙂

    • Jessica November 7, 2016 at 10:45 pm - Reply

      Thanks. I hope autumn has been as pretty in your neck of the woods.

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