Autumn colours and next year’s seedlings

This afternoon, I watched Gardener’s World.  I love Gardener’s World but it always makes me feel guilty about the things I should be doing in the garden.  This week Monty Don cleaned his greenhouse with a stiff bristled brush and very dilute washing up liquid.  I don’t have a greenhouse but I do have a cold frame.  As I still have seedlings in there (due to be planted out next Spring), I made the executive decision to leave the cleaning of the cold frame until then.  I DID go out and water them though.

My cold frame
My cold frame

So far, I have tried growing lupins and foxgloves from seed.  My foxgloves are doing really well but the lupins look a bit crappy.  I’ve never seen lupins growing in the IoW so it may be that they just plain don’t like it here.  They DO grow in Newcastle, where I went to university, so it isn’t as though they don’t like cold drizzle.  If you manage to grow lupins and can see where I am going wrong, please could you let me know in the comments box?  Thanks!

Foxgloves on the right, crappy lupins on the left
Foxgloves on the right, crappy lupins on the left

I KNOW it is probably obvious but both foxgloves and lupins are really poisonous.  Wash your hands after touching either.

I also went and had a look at my lower garden – this is almost always in the shade, except for  in the height of summer, so I grow heucheras, tiarellas and acers.  I love their colours at this time of year.  Sorry, I know that my pictures aren’t brilliant – they were taken on my phone.  It’s much more impressive in person.

Lower garden
Lower garden

I know it’s full of weeds but I can’t face disturbing all the spiders.  I’m not afraid of them, I think spiders are awesome and don’t like upsetting them.  Next time I’m down, I’ll do some proper weeding.  My local garden centre is Honnor & Jeffrey, who have loads of great things, especially herbs and heathers.  If I want something really specific, I’ll often order from Crocus – they ARE expensive and I pay an extra tenner on top of the five pound delivery charge for IoW delivery but they have a great website and a lot of choice.

The heucheras, tiarellas and heucherellas (a cross between the first two), I order from Plantagogo, who are based somewhere up north.  I first met the owners at the RHS Autumn Show in 2014 and they were super helpful.  Their couriers do charge LOADS for delivery to the IoW though so I have them deliver to London and then drive the plants down in the car.

Beautiful heuchera
Beautiful heuchera

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