GBFD – Autumn colour?

I often complain that there is no autumn colour in my garden, but this month I can claim to have some!

At last some colour! This is Persimmon

At last some colour! This is Persimmon

Lonicera, honeysuckle

Lonicera, honeysuckle

Lonicera, honeysuckle has lovely pink leaves at present; they’re hanging on too which is a bonus when even green leaves have been ripped from stems and branches by strong winds.

Lonicera, honeysuckle

Lonicera, honeysuckle

P1120608

Melia azedarach is beginning to show some buttery yellow foliage, but these leaves usually fall very quickly to reveal their bright yellow berries, which stand out beautifully again a blue sky.

new foliage on Quercus ilex

New foliage on Quercus ilex

Look how much new foliage the Quercus ilex have put on during autumn, that’s more than in most springs!

Acca sellowiana, Feijoa

Acca sellowiana, Feijoa

Acca sellowiana, Feijoa has also benefited from the warm wet autumn this year; it is better for the plants to put on new growth now rather than in spring as often the plant can’t sustain the foliage put on in spring which might be followed by a very dry July and August as happened this year.  Lots of shrubs and trees put on masses of new growth, more than I’d ever seen before because of the very wet spring but then the new growth shrivelled and died due to the drought in August.  New growth now has time to become strong enough to withstand drought conditions.

Lots of bright new foliage on Buxus, box

Lots of bright new foliage on Buxus, box

What foliage is attracting your attention this month; is it colourful autumn tints or new growth that is making the most impact?

To join GBFD all you need to do is add a comment with a link back to your post; a link in your post to mine is nice, but not a prerequisite.

Melia azedarach

Botanic description
Melia azedarach is a deciduous tree up to 45 m tall; bole fluted below when old, up to 30-60 (max. 120) cm in diameter, with a spreading crown and sparsely branched limbs. Bark smooth, greenish-brown when young, turning grey and fissured with age. Leaves alternate, 20-40 cm long, bipinnate or occasionally tripinnate. Leaflets 3-11, serrate and with a pungent odour when crushed. Inflorescence a long, axillary panicle up to 20 cm long; flowers showy, fragrant, numerous on slender stalks, white to lilac; sepals 5-lobed, 1 cm long; petals 5-lobed, 0.9 cm long, pubescent; staminal tube deep purple blue, 0.5 cm long, 1 cm across. Fruit a small, yellow drupe, nearly round, about 15 mm in diameter, smooth and becoming a little shrivelled, slightly fleshy. Seed oblongoid, 3.5 mm x 1.6 mm, smooth, brown and surrounded by pulp. Because of the divided leaves, the generic name is derived from the Greek ‘melia’ (the ash); the specific name comes from the Persian ‘azzadirackt’ (noble tree).

History of cultivation
This tree, well known as Persian lilac, is native to India but is now grown in all the warmer parts of the world; in many of these places it is naturalized. It is widely planted in Nigeria, for example.
Natural Habitat
A tree of the subtropical climatic zone, the natural habitat of M. azedarach is seasonal forest, including bamboo thickets, Tamarindus woodland. It is highly adaptable and tolerates a wide range of conditions; for example, the most frost-tolerant cultivars can be planted outdoors in sheltered areas in the British Isles.

Melia azedarach here as a multi-stemmed specimen

It is the quickest growing tree I have ever seen.  This was planted as a small seedling plant given to me by a friend, each stem was no thicker than my thumb and about 70 cm tall in 2007.  There is another on the other side of the garden in the left hand border.

Very delicate flowers

The bark is really beautiful at least on young trees like mine.

19th November 2011, the berries on the tree (left hand border)

The butter-yellow autumn foliage and yellow berries against a cloudless sky 14th November 2011