News: Have I Missed Summer


« back to News

Have I Missed Summer?

With the arrival of August, it is unavoidable that we start thinking about our autumn planting. Let us hope that there is plenty of summer sunshine ahead, but the garden waits for no one and choices will have to be made.

Whilst our focus will be on our displays for next spring it is still worth considering the autumn garden. On the bulb front, the most popular choices are the colchicums, cyclamen and crocus. They are charming and fascinating and provide useful colour when other perennials are dying back. Apart from colour and scent part of the joy of gardening is watching the plants we grow come and go during the different seasons and the autumn flowering bulbs certainly add to our interest and pleasure. 

Native to the British Isles, Europe, the Mediterranean and Central Asia they bear their flowers before the leaves appear in spring, hence their name of naked ladies. Plant in moisture retentive fertile soil. To flower at their best, they should be situated in a sheltered position that enjoys the afternoon sun. If they become over congested, they should be divided after the foliage has died down and immediately replanted. 
If they are not planted immediately, they can be brought into flower on a sunny windowsill without any soil or moisture. Plant in the garden as soon as the flowers have gone over.

Autumn Crocus
These include crocus Sativus, the Saffron crocus thought to be first commercially cultivated during the reign of Edward III in the village that is now Saffron Walden. Plant in generous drifts in the shrubbery, beneath trees or in the alpine garden. Planting depths should be no more than 5cm. Planting too deeply is a common cause for failure to flower and prevents naturalisation unless the soil is especially light. 

Hardy Cyclamen (hederifolium) 
They form a luxurious carpet of marbled foliage followed by numerous weather-resistant dainty blossoms. They look glorious in woodland or the shrubbery and also do well in containers. Plant in a dampish situation working in plenty of leaf mould. Apply a top dressing of the same when the plants are dormant. 

A reminder that our traditional offer, usually only available during our spring shows, of 10 free tulips for every 60 ordered runs until the end of August. This year’s tulip is  Flaming Flag, pictured below. For any orders received after this date, we will of course still try to include them, but this will be subject to availability. 
Enjoy your garden,

« back to News