Summer is almost over. There is just one week of summer left for the UK in 2015.
On 23rd September Autumn begins. Seasonal changes in day length and falling temperatures mean that already our flowers are beginning to bow out gracefully leaving attractive seed heads behind. Even though leaves are still green some of our trees are stunning with the low sunlight shining through leaves.
Here’s the Katsura Grove at Scampston Hall.
As the sun dips in the sky grasses are back lit and dramatic long shadows are created by tall stems. Autumn is coming and it’s time for foliage to take centre stage in our gardens.
It’s easy to get caught up with the drama and beauty of flowers in spring and summer. Usually foliage does not feature highly on any shopping list then. It’s often relegated to the background. But at this time of year the structure of the garden is revealed. If you love a naturalistic feel like this perennial meadow at Scampston below, or an even wilder look to your garden some structure is required in the form of a tree, a hedge or topiary. It doesn’t have to be anything grand, just a straightforward line of plants to create a hedge or a simple box ball or two will help to pull your planting scheme together. Somehow, adding plants with distinctive shapes helps to make any garden feel less haphazard and more like everything has been done on purpose. Foliage comes into the foreground in autumn.
Our own garden is quite wild in places. We chose deciduous hedges of Hawthorn and Hornbeam which can cope with the wet winter earth. For a more formal setting backing the Summer border we have an evergreen Yew hedge. We planted them over ten years ago and I’m very happy to say that they look like they’ve always been here. For us they act as windbreaks because we live on top of a hill and in rural locations like this the wind whirls around and seems to come from every direction. Small garden birds nest in them and they provide a corridor along which small mammals can meander in safety. There’s a lot to be said for a hedge!
Some of the best hedges I’ve seen are these in the Walled Garden at Scampston Hall.
The Hall near Malton in North Yorkshire is set in acres of Capability Brown Parkland.
Close to the house is The Walled Garden which was designed by Piet Oudolf and opened in 2004.
If you’d like to visit Scamspton Walled Garden it’s open until the 1st November 2015.
Please see their website for opening times and prices. (Lovely restaurant and plant sales too!)
I’m joining in with Pam Pennick at Digging for Foliage Day today.
I hope the sun is shining wherever you are. Happy Gardening.