Gardening Magazine

Goodbye September!

By Julie King

Welcome to my slightly late review of September – as September was such a busy month for me I am starting with a few personal highlights this time, as well as lots of photos from the garden.


After a very shaky start weather-wise, September has been a glorious month here in Suffolk – a true Indian summer. For me it was also a very busy month – flowers for a big wedding, family from America visiting, time spent with the lovely blogger Libby from An Eye For Detail and my son leaving the school he has been at since he was 5 to start a creative 6th form course at a local college – a lot to fit into one short month!

Punting In Cambridge

September began with the long anticipated and very exciting visit from Libby, an American blogger who I had only met in our virtual blogging world. I knew I would love Libby when I read this post about ironing on her lovely blog An Eye For Detail! As expected Libby and I got on like a house on fire and had a lovely two days together. On the first day we went into Cambridge and after a wander around the Chapel at King’s College we took a punt along the river.


The next day we were up bright and early for a tour around the area where I live. I had arranged to visit a couple of friends with Libby, so that she could see some lovely English gardens apart from mine. We visited two gardens in the morning, had a delicious lunch at Wyken Vineyard and then headed out to Lavenham to see the beautiful bronze sculptures made by my friend Kate Denton in the setting of her very romantic garden.


Bronze Lady

As Libby left, our American family arrived for a weeks holiday. It was dinner for 12 – 14 every night for the week, so I am now adept at cooking for large numbers!! My little nephew, beautiful Blaise, loved his first trip to England. Living in Florida he has never come across falling leaves before and I could not resist showing you this picture of pure joy as the leaves drifted down around him.

Our Little Nephew

The purpose of the visit was to bring the family together at a large party to celebrate the 80th birthday of my husbands Aunt Sheila. Here she is below with her granddaughter on the night of the party.

Birthday Portrait

The evening was a true celebration of the generations with the youngest guest reaching only 14 months of age. This is a family that love to come together and we talked and danced the night away.

An 80th Birthday Party

And, of course, in the midst of all this family time there was also the wedding flowers!


The garden this September has been very beautiful! The warm days and lovely September light has made everything pretty again. Below you can see the frothy cosmos that has filled out the borders:


The second flush of roses has started and hopefully will continue for a few weeks yet. When the roses first flower in June all the buds seem to pop at once and there are roses filling every corner of the garden – then suddenly it is all over – the flowers are just confetti on the ground. The second flush is more of a slow drip feed, with one or two buds opening at a time. Below is the David Austin Wedgewood Rose.


And this one is Wollerton Old Hall, also a David Austin rose.


I only have a few autumn crocus, colchicum autumnale, which are planted at the very start of the winter walk. Every year I think I have lost them and then they surprise me by seeming to flower from nowhere.


In the Kitchen Garden sunflowers, zinnias and pumpkins have been taking over the beds.


The winter salad leaves have been planted out and covered to protect them from the very greedy birds!


This has been a fantastic month for the zinnias – the flowers just keep coming!


In the main borders my favorite autumn fuchsia is reaching maturity. These elegant airy fuchsia are cut right back every spring and grow slowly throughout the summer months, filling out the autumn borders.


Another autumn favorite are the japanese anemones that are flowering in shady spots around the garden. Below is the double white Whirlwind.


I have found the first cyclamen hederifolium flowering in the winter walk. I have been trying to establish some clumps since we first moved here 5 years ago and finally feel I am making some progress.


An autumn highlight that I missed photographing was this witch-hazel turning color so dramatically! Now all that is left is the promise of the beautiful flowers that will be cheering up my January garden.


In the greenhouse there are plenty of trays of seedlings of both vegetables and hardy annual flowers.


And bags and bags of bulbs waiting to be planted.


So now we are into October and the weather has changed to fit the season. I have lots of garden jobs to get on with this month and preparations to make for Halloween and Bonfire Night. I love both these seasonal celebrations with their cosy feeling of bringing the gardening year to a close. There are also the first preparations to be made for the festive season – I always make the Christmas pudding and mincemeat in October, as well as a few jars of chutney. Hopefully there will also be sloes to harvest for sloe gin and conkers to collect and fill autumnal vases with.

I hope you have enjoyed this look back at September and I will be back on Monday with my first vase for October.

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