GBFD – Luxurious Green

Last month I wrote about Sissinghurst Castle for GBFD so that it is two months since I wrote about the foliage in My Hesperides Garden.  What a difference two months make!  Then we had just experienced the first rain after the drought now the garden is luxuriant after a considerable quantity of rain, more than usual for this time of year but certainly very welcome.

Silver leaved plants look great most of the time, only after heavy rain they look green.

Foliage in the large island

Foliage in the large island

Even the lavender that I described as looking dead and many of you commented that I shouldn’t have any false hopes has, for the most part put on a lot of foliage even where it had been cut back severely into ‘old wood’ which in England would be unlikely to re-grow at all; here, as you can see, has sprouted incredibly well.  Not all has recovered but enough to make me think it might be worth keeping it going as I don’t really relish the cost of replacing it with something else.



Lavender close up showing the amount of regrowth on 'dead wood'

Lavender close up showing the amount of regrowth on ‘dead wood’

Cerinthe purpurea major has, as always, produced a mass of seedlings, some need removing to the compost heap and some moved to where I might appreciate them more – this is a job that needs to be done soon!

Cerinthe purpurea major  in the bed but also in the gravel path - a lot must go!

Cerinthe purpurea major in the bed but also in the gravel path – a lot must go!
Achillea foliage looking very lush

Achillea foliage looking very lush

Achillea in the Large Island

Achillea in the Large Island

Nandina domestica is showing the pink tints that tells me winter is approaching.  I do love this plant, it isn’t invasive in Italy; I know it is in some parts of the US; here it grows very slowly and although it has produced seedlings not one has survived.



Nandino pink edged foliage

Nandina pink edged foliage

Prostrate Rosemary completely covering the tuffo wall by the gate

Prostrate Rosemary completely covering the tufo wall by the gate

Euphorbia mysenites foliage alwasy looka perfect

Euphorbia mysenites foliage always looks perfect

Euphorbia on the slope

Euphorbia on the slope


Sorry I have completely forgotten the name of this plant, it is an annual and I have written about it on numerous occasions.  The foliage is green during summer and then changes to this amazing pink in mid-autumn

View: top of the drive border looking down the drive

View: top of the drive border looking down the drive and across to the Large Island

If you would like to join me in celebrating foliage in the garden, just post and add a comment to this post with a link back to your own post.  I’m really looking forward to a feast of colour this month when many of you will have some fabulous foliage to share.

Late addition I just read this post from Rhone Street Gardens, the whole post is amazing do take a look.

34 thoughts on “GBFD – Luxurious Green

  1. Some things really seem to be untouched by your drought, the rosemary looks as good as any I’ve ever seen as well as the euphorbias!
    For a while I was convinced that burning was the best way to regenerate older lavender plants. It worked, but I couldn’t find a way to regenerate my neighbor’s nerves! Something about open fires and crackling perennial borders put the street on edge 😉
    I actually have a few nice little foliage plants this month if you’re interested, hope I’m linking this correctly!

    • Thanking for the link to your post about cyclamen. I’ve never heard of regenerating lavender by burning, I’ll check it out, but have to admit I think my nerves might be a bit like your neighbours.

  2. Very green! I have never come across a Nandino before. The autumn leaf colour is quite attractive. I always forget how tough lavender is… I have cut some of mine right down to the ground in the past (always with some trepidation!), and they have all recovered!

    • I can really recommend Nandino domestica although it might only just be hardy where you are; it is a plant that looks great all year! In the UK we always say that you can’t prune lavender back to old wood because it won’t grow, that doesn’t seem to be true here, I surmised that it had something to do with higher light levels here, but I’ve never found any information about it.

    • Hi Pauline, thank you for joining in again this month, I always look forward to seeing your foliage post. I am relieved about the lavender and am tempted to cut some that hasn’t sprouted even further back to see what happens, there’s nothing to lose.

  3. Lots of lovely foliage in my garden at the moment but it’s so flipping wet I can’t get out to take any photos. The first autumn storms are battering us. I’m just hoping there are some leaves left for me to take photos of when it finally dries up. :0

  4. Your garden is looking very lush and still active. Thank goodness Cerinthe self seed, I was thinking of doing away with mine (I hadn’t really put them in a good place) when I noticed the Anthophora bees love them. They are very cute little bumble bee shaped ones so I will be trying to find a better place for my Cerinthe seedlings this year.

    • My Cerinthe are great for the bees because they flower sometimes from Christmas until I get fed up with them in May, sometimes even April as the lower leaves look dreadful, I’m going to put more onto the slope because I won’t notice the stems there so they can flower until there isn’t enough water for them.

  5. Thank you for hosting, Christina – it is such an intriguing experience comparing what is going on in other people’s gardens at a specific time and I have learned a lot from it. I need to prune my lavender, very young plants, but I am still hesitant in case I get it wrong! The annual-with-no-name is beautiful and i envy you your cerinthe seedlings (well, some of them!) as i have had mixed success when i try them. My link is

    • Hi Cathy, thank you for joining in GBFD, I’m glad you find it interesting and helpful. I find the Cerinthe are always better as self seeders, the few times I’ve sown the seed to plant out they have been a failure not least because they don’t seem to hold themselves upright whereas the self seeders do.

  6. I’m thrilled to see all these Cerinthe major seedlings! Same in my garden and as frost always comes late, there’s still a chance for flowers. I think there are a lot of myths and fairy tales in the garden world and the thing with Lavender is one of them as I know a lot of people who chop it right back and it keeps coming back, looking great. The creeping rosemary looks splendid.

    • Good to know your experience with Lavender. I thought it was just here where the light levels are higher that it grew back so well so it is interesting that you know lots of people who cut it back. I have to say that in the UK it is a fact that it doesn’t grow back after being cut; this gives me even more confidence to cut back some of the bushes that look half dead, I’ll report on success or failure.

  7. I yanked out all of the cerinthe seedlings in a snit because there were so many of them. They are now popping up charmingly, but I guess this will be a cyclic thing (feast/famine).
    In the US, we do Foliage Follow Up on the 16th of each month, the day after Garden Bloggers’ Bloom Day. I guess it corresponds to what you are doing here, so here’s my post, with a link to Pam, who hosts.

    • Hi Ricki, when I started GBFD I didn’t know about foliage follow up, but I was encouraged to continue when I did know as many people (myself included) found it difficult to do two ‘big’ posts in two days. I am more than happy that you link to your “follow up” post, a mention of GBFD would also be nice.

  8. Christina l’ultima volta non ero riuscita ad inserire il mio link, ora ci riprovo( mi limito a copiare l’indirizzo, ma non so se si fa così). Ho scritto l’articolo sul fogliame qualche giorno fa ed ora l’ho aggiornato come GBFD. La mia nandina è tutta rossa già da un mese forse c’è una maggiore escursione termica; anch’io sapevo che la lavanda non va potata bassa, ma forse non è vero…; la piantina annuale mi sembra la Kochia trichophylla (scoparia) e l’ho letto sul tuo blog. Provo molta invidia per tutte quelle piantine di cerinthe.

    • Ciao Anna Maria, ti ringrazio per essere presente questo mese per GBFD. Hi ragione la piante che non ricordavo il nome è Kochia trichophylla (scoparia); quelle che te ho dato sono cresciuti? Se hai voglia avere il Cerinthe vieni a prendertele; come hai visto ci sono tantissimi.

      • Sì le kochie sono cresciute, anche se hanno un po’ sofferto questa estate ed io ho evitato di annaffiare per provare la loro resistenza alla siccità. Probabilmente uno di questi giorni verrò da te a prendere qualche piantina di cerinthe… ti faccio sapere.

  9. Hi Christina, better late than never, I have finally managed to get a GBFD post together and up. I had to smile at the euphorbias taking such a starring role, they are rapidly become a mainstay of my front garden, I love them. I hope your lavender continues to produce new foliage, replacing massed plantings like that is either very expensive or takes a long time, and the lavender looks so good there. Your cerinthe seedlings remind me of my forget-me-not and lychnis seedlings, both of which require similarly emphatic management! Thanks for hosting.

    • Thanks for joining in this month. Self seeders that are easy to remove are no problem, actually a nice problem to have. Euphorbia are great plants, I’d love to have even more of them.

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