Category: Autumn

Red & Gold

Red & Gold

Want the red and gold colours of autumn in your garden?  There are a few trees and plants that really come up to the mark. One is Liquidambar or more commonly called the American sweet gum tree. However, do be careful because it does grow very large and tall so not for small gardens.

Perfect time to Plant Trees

Now is the perfect time to plant trees. The soil is still warm from the summer months and with the recent rain just the right texture to dig in your new plants. Remember to also dig in plenty of manure or plant humus. If you need any help with choosing your trees and how to plant please do contact our horticultural specialists at Hambrooks of Titchfield.

Japanese Acer

It tends to be one of the last trees to change colour and still retains its leaves long after other trees are sporting bare branches so is good for late colour in the garden. If you do have a small garden you can plant a Japanese acer for the red and colours of autumn. Make sure you enjoy the colours while they last as the acer tends to drop its leaves very quickly! One day its displaying a wonder autumn colour and the next the leaves are all gone!

Food for local blackbirds

Virginia creeper turns a stunning deep red, although in opposition to Liquidamber it not only drops  its leaves early but also very quickly.  The common grapevine is great for covering fences and growing over arches or pergolas even if you have no intention of making your own wine! The leaves are lime green all summer and late autumn go through this process from a light to deep red with the veins in the leaves becoming prominent. Additionally, if you leave the ripened grapes they provide food for the local blackbirds. You do do need to plant in full sun.

Autumn Bedding

Autumn Bedding

autumn beddingIn the past decade, autumn bedding plants have come into their own.   While there is not the same large selection available as with summer bedding, you can still create a great decorative seasonal display. You can choose from the ever popular autumn flowering pansies, violas and cyclamen.

Centre Stage

While pansies are the most popular autumn bedding, it is its smaller cousin, the viola that takes centre stage. They really do come in all colours of the rainbow. Ranging from deep velvet purples, mauves and dreamy blues, to more translucent lilacs, pink, sorbet yellows, to soft creams and whites. You can use them to create winter window boxes and patio pots or for brightening borders close to the house.  And what sturdy fellows they are! You might believe  a snowfall would crush them. Yet as soon as the snow melts, they miraculously lift their dainty faces and spring back to life.

Autumn & Winter Hanging Baskets

Cyclamen in pretty pinks and white is very hardy and cold tolerant, although they do tend to fade quickly in very wet conditions. To avoid this scenario, plant them where they are well protected in porches or close to the house under the eaves. Or perhaps you fancy one of their colourful winter flowering hanging basket to cheer up your front door during the dark winter days?

No Maintenance

Providing you plant them in well conditioned soil, autumn bedding will generally look after itself so you really do not have to do very much once you have planted them out. You need only give some very light watering if conditions are very dry, but you will probably find that the days are damp enough to provide enough moisture.

September Garden

September Garden

How does our September garden grow? As summer plants begin to fade, we often believe that once September arrives the colour will go from our gardens. This is far from true. There are many herbaceous plants that will grace our borders to take us well into the middle of October And even longer if Jack Frost stays away! Solidago or golden rod is a good back of the border plant with is tall stems and lance like leaves. It has deep yellow blooms, is drought tolerant and a great pollinator. It also encourages migrating bees and butterflies to stay in the area.

Dense Flower Spikes

Another great late summer plant is the Agastache with its stems of dense flower spikes of lavender blue flowers and aromatic foliage. Again it is beloved of both butterflies and bees . It needs full sun and good drainage if you want it to bloom at its best.  Its name is derived from ‘aga’ which means much and ‘stachys’, which means many and this pertains to the abundance of its blooms. A striking and elegant plant for the mid border in your September Garden.

Tiny Daisies

Asters fill your borders with wonderful lilacs from lavender blue to white or hazy blue. This plant performs well if planted in full sun.  These masses of tiny daisies are a real treasure at this time of year. It is no wonder that aster means ‘star’ in Latin. Sedum grows with abundance all summer with its thick ‘cabbage’ like leaves and the mass of flower heads that are green then turn to a dark red colour as September approaches.  Once again it is a good pollinator.

Other herbaceous plants that bloom well into September are Achillea and Helenium or as its more commonly known, ‘sneezeweed’. If you would like some advice and help with your planting please call into our Garden Design & Landscape Centre in Titchfield. We are open 7 days a week and stock a wide and varied selection of plants, shrubs, specimen plants, mature plants and trees.

Autumn Plants

Autumn Plants

Winter Flowering Trees

Autumn plants and autumn planting is upon us. Ornamental and fruit trees are ideal to plant now. Some ornamental trees are winter flowering varieties such as the Prunus Autumnalis Rosea. This has a pretty pink blossom that starts to bloom in late October and often flowers right up until March. As a bonus, its deciduous leaves provide beautiful autumnal colour. It will serve you well as a specimen tree in the middle of a lawn.

If you prefer an early spring flowering variety there is the Prunus avium ‘Kanzan’. This is one of the most popular of garden cherry trees and produces masses of the most stunning double-pink blossoms.

Autumn Bedding Plants

In addition, there is no need to believe just because autumn is approaching with her golds and bronzes, we cannot continue to see some lovely bright colours in our borders. By taking advantage of the wide range of winter bedding such as pansies, violas and the wonderful cyclamen, we can keep our gardens looking very cheerful throughout the autumn and winter months. You can plant up baskets and pots to place by your front door or entrance to your home. This will add some cheery hues when it is too cold to do more than just hurry from your car to your front door!

Need some advice?

Contact our Garden Design & Landscape Centre or call on 01489 572285


Autumn Gardens

Autumn Gardens

At last we can tend to our Autumn Gardens ! After a long dry spell during the summer months the recent rain has finally softened the earth. This means the soil is easy to work with at the moment and at this time of year we need to think about tidying up our beds and borders, splitting plants and planting new plants and shrubs ready for next year.

In addition to new planting and splitting any overgrown perennials, especially those that are stampeding over smaller and less bold plants, you need to think about helping to increase your soil’s fertility by adding plenty of fertilizer, manure or a soil conditioner.

The Right Fertiliser

However, at this time of year it is very important to use the right fertilizers for our Autumn gardens. Treated farmyard manure is a great bulk soil conditioner, which is good for getting the microorganisms in your soil working. A course grade of bonemeal will slowly break down over the winter months and release nutrients to promote strong root growth. A seaweed based fertilizer is another good autumn and early winter slow release feed as it also has the added benefit of helping to reduce the effects of frost.

Daffodils and Tulips

It’s also time to plant your spring bulbs. In fact, you can plant tulips well into the New Year. Although its probably best not to wait that long as planting conditions often deteriorate as we go deeper into winter. If the temperature is harsh the ground will be too frost bound for any planting. Keep an eye on your holly trees because if they bear prolific show of berries, it is s strong indication the winter might be a tough one. In the meantime get planting! The best way to plant your bulbs, especially daffodils, is to grab a handful and just scatter them. Then plant them where they fall to avoid regimented lines and again add bonemeal as you plant.  As you dig into the soil remember before you know it their beautiful yellow heads will be popping up above ground.


Colourful Autumn

Colourful Autumn

Evening Flower

colourful autumnHow can we have a bright colourful autumn? While we love the deep hues of autumn there are still some plants that are summer like in their colour during the later autumn months. One such plant is the Hesperantha.

A pretty lily like plant, it is a perennial and will last well into late autumn flowering until the beginning of December. Its common name is ‘River Lily’ and the name Hesperantha is derived from the Greek meaning ‘Evening Flower’.

It is a cormous flowering perennial, belonging to the Iris family and sports clusters of pink tinged white starry lily like blooms.  It creates quite a picture among the dying perennials of summer.

Pink & Powerful

Another colourful autumn bulb plant is the vibrant pink flowering Nerine bowdenni with its rather dramatic pink spirals. It is a South African bulb so likes the sun and is best planted in a sunny aspect.  If the summer is hot and sunny you will get a great show and if not so good they may not even flower. Similar to agapanthus in nature they dislike intensely being moved. So ensure you choose a spot where you can leave them to flower happily alone.

Cornish Gold

colourful autumn

Although not strictly an autumn flowering plant the family of Argyranthemum or marguerites have a very long flowering season. They will flower from May until the end of November. While only half hardy they will survive a mild winter outside and will flower again the following summer. You may noticed though that the stems do tend to become rather woody. The Marguerite ‘Cornish Gold’ has pretty lemon daisy flowers and really brightens the late autumn borders. They may even survive a few frosts!




rosesRoses will carry on flowering until the first frost, and what a choice of colours. From the palest cream to the deepest red. Vibrant and versatile,  they will complement any style of garden, large or small. No wonder they are known as ‘Queen of the Garden’. So in celebration of the rose we are holding a Rose Festival during the month of June.

There are several activities taking place including the talented local artist Julie Tucker who is sketching roses on June 2nd and June 30th between 10am-12pm and 1pm-3pm

Roses have been around for so long that no one is sure where they were first grown, although we do know that the Egyptians grew rose gardens in 3000BC.

Show of Blooms

Roses do not like being disturbed so carefully choose a spot, preferably where it gets some sun where you know you can leave them there permanently. As with most plants, roses are best planted in clumps or groups. So aim to plant at least three shrubs if you want to get a real show of blooms.

Additionally, your soil needs to be well drained and loamy if possible, as roses often struggle in heavy clay like soils.  Prepare your soil well by digging it over and digging in a good manure. Then add a fine dressing of super phosphate.   Finally, if the conditions are unsuitable to plant right now, please do not worry. Keep your roses in a cool dark place in their original containers and ensure you keep the soil slightly moist until you are able to plant them.roses

How to treat your roses

Contrary to popular belief, roses are not as difficult to look after as it is often portrayed. How you look after them creates much debate. The jury is out on whether you nurture them lovingly or leave them very much to their own devices. Strong argument abounds for both sides! You will have to decide yourself what works for you and your roses.

rosesYou can spray them during the summer months with a weak solution of washing up liquid to get rid of greenfly. Alternatively, plant marigolds, chives and lavender in nearby beds. Easy.

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