Six on Saturday: November Promise

The garden may be dying back for the year, but I actually feel quite hopeful. I have ordered three new bare root roses, I have lots of bulbs to plant and I can spend a happy winter by the fireside planning next year’s garden.

So while this week’s six might not be the heights of floral perfection, they represent the promise of better things to come. Don’t forget to head on over to see what our Chief Sixer The Propagator and his followers have been up to in their gardens this week.

  1. Woodland garden

Here are some before and after shots of an awkward part of our garden underneath the fig tree from which I cleared the leaves yesterday in the hope that it would give me some inspiration. I have decided to turn this area, which is almost always in shade, into a woodland garden. At the moment it is overrun with ivy, mahonia, jasmine and common bugloss. I have some shade-tolerating bulbs to plant in this area, but any suggestions for woodland perennials I could plant here in the spring would be very welcome.

2. Cornus ‘Midwinter Fire’


We have not had a frost yet here in Sussex, so our Cornus is clinging on to its flowers and foliage. I bought this from Wakehurst Place early in the year as I love this variety of dogwood for its fiery orange stems. I am looking forward to seeing them in all their glory in winter and hope that in a year or two I will be able to take cuttings. (Yes I know this area needs weeding – it’s at the back of the border!)

3. Last geraniums

IMG_1626Our common garden Cranesbill are clinging on for dear life. I will appreciate their pink petals while I can.

4. Nasturtiums

IMG_1631Off The Edge Gardening and I exchanged comments on how the humble nasturtium will probably inherit the earth last week and here are some of ours, still going strong in vibrant autumnal oranges and yellows.

5. Overflowing compost heap

IMG_1628Our somewhat untidy compost corner is struggling to keep up with all the clippings and leaves. This is going to be one hell of a job to turn, but that can wait until next year.

6. Salvia uliginosa

IMG_1632I featured this lovely bog salvia – a recent purchase from Marchant’s Hardy Plants – a couple of week’s ago, but I had to show it off again as I am so pleased with its brilliant blue flowers surviving into November. Fingers crossed it will make it through the winter.

23 Comments Add yours

  1. The vibrant blue of the salvias has been most welcome this year, I need to check whether mine are still going. – I think they may have been frost-bitten. I haven’t planted nasturtiums for years, perhaps next year.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. That is a lovely Salvia. My Nasturtiums have performed admirably over Autumn have to admit. They were rubbish in the summer I am going to plant see them later next year.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ali says:

    Your Salvia is lovely. I can’t help reading ugly nose into its name, which is very unfair. Which roses did you order?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Emily Bronte, Lady Emma Hamilton – inspired by yours! And Felicite Perpetue.


  4. Jim Stephens says:

    Is your shady area dry or moist? Some woodlanders can take dry, some can’t.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Jim Stephens says:

        Podophyllum ‘Spotty Dotty’, Begonia grandis evansiana, Ferns, notably Athyrium & Polystichum, Epimedium, Disporum, Maianthemum racemosum, oleracea, bifolium, Polygonatum, Trachystemon orientalis and so on.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Wonderful! Thank you for these suggestions.


  5. Lovely Salvia. Dry or moist, Euphorbia amygdaloides always performs. sometimes too much, but is fairly easy to stop.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Mala Burt says:

    I read somewhere years ago that the best compost was the piles that were just left for a couple of years.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Heyjude says:

    The bog salvia is lovely, I can’t resist a blue flower. Pulmonaria are good for a moist woodland border and you can get different colours, early spring flowering; Ferns of course, Astrantia are also good in the shade. I haven’t planted one yet but will do so next spring and several hardy geraniums.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Astrantia – yes. It is on my wish list. I have pulmonaria elsewhere but a nice selection of ferns is a good idea.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Your salvia is very popular, with me too! I had one once, no idea what happened to that …… Glad to see the nasturtium continue their march, same here. Love Midwinter Fire! My favourite for shade is epimediums, great plants.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Chloris says:

      I’ll get some cuttings going for you.

      Liked by 2 people

  9. fredgardener says:

    The salvia is very colorful, the nasturtiums overflow on this border of bricks and, like all of us, the garden is calm and the tasks are fewer …

    Liked by 1 person

  10. tonytomeo says:

    Our native species of red twig dogwood is not as colorful as the garden varieties are. It is just rusty red. The garden varieties are not very popular here because there is so much other color through winter. Red twig dogwoods and their light colored relatives would not contrast well against our always lush landscaped.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Chloris says:

    Take some cuttings of your salvia as an insurance policy. You have chosen a lovely cornus.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. janesmudgeegarden says:

    I remember last week’s nasturtium conversation and you’ve just given me an idea for an area I am struggling with. Thank you! I’m afraid I’m no use with cool damp woodland areas as an area like that just doesn’t exist in my garden. I love your blue Salvia too. I have one a similar blue, but not bog sage, obviously.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. cavershamjj says:

    Eurybia divaricata would work well in your woody area I think. It is also known as white wood aster. Some geraniums tolerate a bit of dry shade. Ferns too of course. I also like this time of year, straightening things out, ordering plants for next year. I also ordered three roses recently. All climbers.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. JohnK says:

    I like your attitude. So many gardeners at this time of year see it as an end. But it’s a beginning as we look forward to the bulbs and things we plant now growing afresh. And to making changes like your new woodland area. Not to mention all those catalogues ……

    Liked by 1 person

  15. My compost heap looks like yours. We should be mowing it like The Propagator does!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Eliza Waters says:

    Lovely blue salvia. I hope it is hardy for you.
    I had some cuttings of nasturtiums I used in a vase a few weeks ago take root. I’m thinking of putting them in a hanger and seeing how they fare over winter. It’d be nice to have their cheerful blooms during the dark months.

    Liked by 1 person

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