The end of meteorological summer can seem like a turning point in the year that carries echoes of spring from dewy mornings to cooler evenings. Earlier in the year the low sunlight picked out peonies and roses. Now pink and white anemones are picked out in the low autumn light along the double herbaceous border. These are quintessential late summer herbaceous perennials which hold their papery blooms well above the foliage and which will last well into autumn.
Rudbeckia in both short and tall forms as well as helianthus add a splash of golden yellow amongst the other herbaceous plants. The taller Rudbeckia Herbstonne is perfect for the back of the border whilst the shorter Rudbeckia fulgida looks great at the front especially amongst asters and continues the display now that the anthemis and nepeta are fading.
At the bottom of the main lawn the long grass on the wildflower meadow has been cut and gathered up and close mown. Cutting the grass and removing it helps to weaken the more vigorous grasses. This, in combination with the parasitic yellow rattle gives an opportunity for wild plants to self-sow including harebell and loosestrife. We will augment the population of wild flowers from seed as time goes on. Despite its small size cutting the grass revealed how popular this area is with wildlife judging by the number of frogs, toads, invertebrates and mammals that were using it either to hunt or to hide
Dahlias are taking centre stage in the cutting garden and will flower until the frosts. Honka Red has unusual star shaped red flowers whilst Kasagi and Golden Crown are blazing orange and red. Dahlia Sweet Love has pink and white two toned blooms. For real drama you cannot beat Dahlia Bishop of Llandaff which has stunning red daisy like flowers on wiry stems above deep dark foliage. They truly seem to capture the low sunlight and dance in the evening breeze.
Dylan has been busy cutting the box hedges especially below the terrace which does so much to sharpen up the look especially around the roses. He has also been trying his hand at topiary and has refreshed the cloud pruning on the elm. Successful topiary requires patience and an eye for detail and is by no means an instant process but it will develop over time.
Behind the cutting garden the bank of daisies has been cut back so that the pumpkins and squashes can tumble down and get the most sunlight to ripen them up. In partnership with our head chef, Sarah, has chosen a number of varieties including heritage varieties which will perform as well on the plate as in the garden.
Tempting as it may be to linger on the terrace why not take a glass or two after dinner into the garden and have a wander around and see everything that this season offers at Goldstone.
From the Goldstone Garden Team.
A Georgian manor house and restaurant with 12 comfortable bedrooms overlooking the rolling tree-strewn hills of the North Shropshire countryside. Boasting 5 acres of award-winning gardens, including a productive one-acre kitchen garden.