It depends on the summer how quickly autumn comes – our indicator is the apple tree which can suddenly turn red overnight (or so it seems.) The weather is perfect misty mornings, warm days, cool nights! With good summer growth – the woodland especially flourishes, and salvias grow over a metre tall in a few short months along with the Smoke Bush & Forest Pansy.
But always the most splendid of all was the Louis van Houtte Elm – it’s lime foliage and beautiful leaves dominate the drive in – with the ghost gum in front – spectacular. When the leaves fall along with the birch trees it is a yellow carpet with the bare branches like umbrellas over the Secret Garden wall. A close second to Louis van Houtte Elm is the “red wall” at the back boundary where five elm trees turn red and then have a carpet of autumn leaves everywhere covering the wistringa balls. The red hot pokers come out and the Fire Bush which has trumpet flowers that stay for ages.
Around the front are the Camellias, Daphne, Gardenias and Rhododendron. The Camellias are at least 30 years old and every year get a light prune at the end then we just enjoy!