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My garden in pictures November

Calendula Fiesta Gitana
Calendula Fiesta Gitana

Here’s the first of my monthly garden round-up in photos…

I’m moving the site’s emphasis back towards the trials and tribulations in my garden after the masses of posts on new products in the gardening world.

Like everything, the professional gardening world is cyclical and now my attention is turned to my own plot. I always love gardening in the late autumn and winter, as you so rarely see other people doing it (apart from fellow obsessives).

If you want to shut out the horrors of Advent, there’s no better place to be. November is a month of massive change – if we’re lucky, there are still the late flowers of summer struggling along but by the end, the trees are bare and the skeleton of the garden comes to the fore – the evergreens and the berry bearers.

We’ve gone from an exceptionally wet month to a very cold end, with heavy frosts. No sign of snow yet though…

Autumn’s last gasp

Most of these pictures were taken on November 4. The late summer flowering perennials have kept the show going, especially the new Asters and Echinacea.

Also featured is Helianthus Lemon Queen, Leah Tutu rose, the semi-perennial Antirrhinum The Bride, dahlia New Baby, new Acanthus mollis leaves, Fuchsia Star Wars and Calendula Fiesta Gitana.

The stars of the November show – evergreens

Evergreens come into their own now as the last of the leaves fall, opening up the overcrowded borders. I love berries and variegated foliage, as well as large, tropical-style leaves, so you’ll find my favourites here.

End of the deciduous colour

Watching each leaf colour up and flutter down. The beech hedge really comes into its own at this time of year. Missing from this line-up are Acer Trompenburg and the golden hops, which managed to lose all its leaves by the end of October

The hangers-on…

The indestructible climbing rose Claire Austin is still in bud even on November 30 and there are still nasturtiums lurking around, although they are about to bite the dust.

Kale’s cold beauty

Kale and Cavolo Nero only get better with the cold weather and you can’t beat the heightened colours with a sprinkling of icing sugar frost on top.

Casualties of the weather

It’s been extremely wet, followed by a few very cold, bright days with hard frosts overnight – barely lifting above freezing during the day.

Tomato Yellow Pear Shaped is still struggling on in the greenhouse (I shamefully haven’t cleaned it out yet), while the everbearing strawberries still have unripe fruit on them, with no chance of ripening!

All wrapped up for overwintering (or not)

Echium pininana and Red Rocket covered with fleece during the late November cold spell, a little better than the shanty town effect of the previous week. The smaller one in the pot doesn’t look too happy.

I forgot about the Chinese rice paper plant though (covered it last year and it kept its leaves during winter). Looks a bit sad now…

The chillies are cut back and on a thermostatically-controlled heat mat in the conservatory. Spotted greenfly on Biquino Red, much to my chagrin!

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Mandy Watson is a freelance journalist and an incurable plantaholic. MandyCanUDigIt grew from the tiny seed of a Twitter account into the rainforest of information you see before you. Gardening columnist for the Sunderland Echo, Shields Gazette and Hartlepool Mail and editor of the Teesdale Mercury Magazine. Attracted by anything rebellious, exotic and nerdy, even after all these years. Passionate about northern England and gardens everywhere. Falls over a lot.

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