The garden is at its most beautiful in May; and even though the tulips are over as are most of the Irises the garden is FULL! When I look at the garden now, especially this year after so much rain this spring I can hardly believe it will all become parched in a few weeks and I will feel sad looking at a garden that is struggling to stay alive. Continue reading
Until this past Monday, 10th June, the weather here in central Lazio as not been its usual sunny and warm self. Then as the forecasters promised Tuesday the temperature has noticeably risen; the air feels warmer and the afternoon wind from the sea began to blow. Actually just a few moments ago when I was taking photographs there was a mini-whirlwind; I looked around and thought the sky was full of strange birds but instead it was hay that had just been cut from the field behind the house, moments later it passed through the garden lifting dropped petals high into the air, sorry I didn’t manage to get a clear image. Continue reading
There are only a few things I miss about not living in England and most of those are garden-related. Bluebells in spring (I have wild cyclamen in autumn here which I love almost as much), spring bulbs in everybody’s gardens, the possibility of visiting inspiring gardens easily and, at this time of year, the changes of colour of foliage of trees and shrubs.
It’s not that there is no change in colour at all; the pomegranate turns a love bright yellow before the leaves fall, the apricot is taking time to lose its foliage and that too turns an appealing yellow, but there is very little more. Cotinus look more or less the same colour they’ve looked since spring and I doubt they will become the gorgeous red that I’ve seen in other gardens around the world.
The walnuts changed to a brown-yellow before quickly falling. Oaks hang onto their foliage here in the same way that beech does in the UK; the dead foliage persists until the new foliage appears the following spring; I don’t find this characteristic as attractive in trees as I do with beech or hornbeam hedges.
I planted two Lagerstroemia (crape myrtles) because they flower very late August and into September and maybe even October when they are larger and their foliage does change to an attractive red in autumn. But nothing very exciting, the main autumn colour here really is fresh green, which is welcome after the drought of summer.
Kochia trichophylla, an annual does provide some deep pink in that the flowers, seeds and stems of the plant all change to an exciting crimson as autumn progresses.
Some grasses also delight me with their change of colour but most of their interest derives from their flowers.
Evergreen Trachelospermum jasminoides tries hard with some leaves turning to the best red I have in the garden but only a few leaves do this the rest remaining resolutely green.
Looking at these images you might think I do have some autumn colour but it really is very limited, so I have been reading with great pleasure posts from the UK and the US full of wondrous, breath-taking colour, feasting my eyes on such an incredible range of foliage colour I almost wonder why anyone gardens for flowers at all!
I’m adding links to some great posts but I’m eager for more. To join in GBFD just write your post and add your link to your comment here. I’ll be just as interested to see some spring/early summer foliage from the Southern hemisphere.
To all my US readers have a very happy Thanksgiving.