Each Month in my Garden: October

It’s autumn. Every morning I look out of the kitchen window and the colours of the witch hazel remind me that summer is over. Not that I mind; the garden has shifted and the colours of the leaves and grasses are beautiful. There are even some flowers.

There’s been a lot of rain and I’ve noticed that grasses, in particular, look beautiful with raindrops hanging from their wafty stems. I’ve also realised that they are impossible to photograph successfully, at least with my fairly basic camera and even more basic ‘point and click’ attitude. Next year’s forget-me-nots were easier.

Many years ago I fell in love with a house in Edinburgh. Or, to be exact, I fell in love with its bay window. It was a perfectly ordinary Victorian house but there was a table in the bay window, with a lamp and a pile of books. I had no idea who lived there but I imagined wonderful books being written at the table. I came home and rearranged the front room and this is now the table where I do much of my writing. For most of the year the grasses create a perfect screen from the street, particularly at this time of year with their airy plumes and autumnal colours.

I’ve bought bulbs from de Jaeger again this year. They are slightly more expensive than many others (especially if you aren’t careful when choosing the cultivars) but last year I had a 100% success rate. Every single bulb I planted produced a flower and most lasted very well. This has never happened before. I’ve planted bulbs and, at best 75% have flowered. The aim this year was to plan carefully and buy fewer bulbs as I knew I could rely on them. Of course, like a small child in a sweet shop, I bought more than I intended. But I have planted them all, a bit late for the daffs and alliums, and a bit early for the tulips, but they are at least all in the ground.   


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