A little late to the party again due to enjoying a wonderful day in the garden yesterday enjoying almost spring-like weather. Still a lot of colour and interest and one or two first timers to show you.
The button Chrysanth ‘Romantika’ is flowering her socks off now and enjoying the autumn sunshine. Difficult to know why it went out of fashion and became an endangered cultivar but with so many to choose from these days it became a casualty and nearly disappeared until Plant Heritage appealed for someone to save her. I suddenly feel terribly responsible!
I acquired what I was told was Chrysanthemum ‘Royal Command’ many years ago from a friend who had had it in her garden for over forty years. It had spread all along her back fence taking on an almost invasive quality. I became very attached to it and have propagated and distributed many ‘Irishman’s cuttings’ far and wide. I am now informed by an experienced grower that this may not be ‘Royal Command’ after all but a nameless hybrid clone! Apparently this happens a lot with old Chrysanthemum varieties. They suddenly become tired of who they are and morph into something else!
Strictly speaking, this is actually Symphyotrichum lateriflorum ‘Lady in Black’ often referred to as the Calico aster, and I now realise it is not suitable for my garden. I purchased it earlier this year and didn’t do my research properly. It has a very untidy, sprawling habit and needs masses of space, something I cannot provide, so it is going to a friend who loves Asters and will adore its dark plum coloured stems and tiny white flowers with pink centres. We all make mistakes!
One of my jobs yesterday was to wash the trunks of my trio of Himalayan birches to keep them pristine white for the winter. On dark days they earn their name of ‘Grayswood Ghost’
The Sorbus is absolutely heaving with fat, juicy berries which will soon be gorged by the wood pigeons.
The Leycesteria formosa, commonly called Himalayan honeysuckle or Pheasant Berry, has also produced a bumper crop of fruits which will soon be taken by the Blackbirds in a comic spectacle of well judged acrobatic leaps. Never seen a pheasant try but there’s always a first time!
I decided to end on a high note with one of my new roses still going strong and producing more flower buds even at this time of year. Gorgeous!
Enjoy the rest of your weekend
You are the second person to post a photograph of that Aster ‘Lady in Black’ and I am very taken by it. We grow the straight species and it does very well here.
Beautiful sorbus, by the way, and washing the birches is true devotion! I hit them with the power washer when passing!
The Chrysanthemum Romantika you gave me this spring is also doing wonderfully well, thank you! Sadly our pink sorbus appears a weakling compared to yours. Did you ‘power wash’ the birch trees or use a ladder/bucket and brush? – I power wash ours and end up soaked – especially when aiming for the higher branches – any hints?
Hi Carol. Glad the Chrysanth is doing well for you. Hope you don’t curse me when it grows into the monster it’s parent has become!
I am a bit of a softie when it comes to the birches and they get washed by hand with a soft brush and weak car shampoo! It makes them come up nice! I only do the trunks as far up as I can reach, the main trunks are the focal point.
The aster certainly has pretty flowers and lots of them, but the form is not attractive. It has an arching habit and ends up approx 12-18″ off the ground smothering anything beneath. It needs at least 6 feet square. I don’t think supporting it would be right either, it just wouldn’t look right trussed up!
The Sorbus has excelled itself this year and I am seriously considering harvesting 2 kilos for a Xmas Rowan Gin!
The birches get a lot of comments over the winter from passers by so I keep them looking nice!
Bye for now
those trees are looking sharp!
I’ll have to look into Chrysanthemum ‘Royal Command,’ I need some things that are nearly invasive to fill a space the neighborhood cats enjoy too much!
It is a very strong growing, bone hardy Chrysanth and totally reliable in any soil, any aspect, any garden! If you are near me or would pay the postage I could try to send you some cuttings to try.