There was a time when this was my favourite time of the year, the rugby season had started and the ground was getting softer, hay fever season was over, and my bands would be building up to a concert. Well that's all changed now, I don't play rugby anymore and nobody is putting on concerts! Instead gardening has turned from being a hobby to a business and the short, wet days have a big impact on ability to work, and my general mood.
But not everything in the garden is dull and wet, there is still colour, joy and plenty of work to get done. Although a lot of the work I managed yesterday was just cutting back ivy, I still managed a bit of planting and did it in very pleasant surroundings.
This garden is rapidly turning into one of my favourites, having been laid out by an enthusiast it is far from low maintenance but has so much to recommend it, as well as a strong structure there is very good varied planting giving real round the year interest.
Many herbaceous plants are still making a brave display, whether its late flowers or the turning foliage of peonies. Climbers like this Solanum Jasminoides add both scent and display ~ this is actually one of my favourite plants, it's ever green except in the very coldest winters, has a very long flowering period and will happily grow through trees or trellis, excellent for screening where needed and so much nicer than ivy!
When planting up a garden it is so easy to forget timing and plant what's good at the time, what's in flower and being enticing at the garden centre, but having some thing to look at all year round is so important.
In many ways gardeners are always looking forward, at the moment I'm pruning or planting for next spring and summer. Come spring I will be preparing for summer and the following autumn. Even in winter we do not stop, sure, during the short, cold, wet, winter days there is less to do, but we are always planning, always preparing, Maybe that's why gardeners tend to be nice, good people; perhaps we could do with more people in society looking forward and planning for a beautiful future.