A Blaze of Glory

A Blaze of Glory

The  late summer sunshine, with its ‘gold complexion’ un-dimmed,  is causing my front garden to positively ‘sizzle’ in a blaze of glory just now. Come and see.

‘And summer’s lease hath all too short a date.
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimmed;’

Sonnet 18       William Shakespeare

A Blaze of Glory -The Final Performance

Contrary to Shakespeare’s regrets about summer, this year some welcome warmer weather has brought the spring-sown annuals into their chance of a final performance. The garden is filled with floral ‘sunshine’. There’s no need for the proverbial apology to garden visitors: ‘You really should have been here a month ago’!

There’s a definite change of the artist’s palette now as we are warmed by a glorious array of strong yellows, reds and oranges creating end-of-season glowing embers.


Spring Sown Annuals

My bedding tubs are nearly all seed grown. I haven’t bought any bedding plants again this year. I always try to champion annuals. They’re sadly underrated by many modern gardeners, distracted by all the tempting  (and expensive) perennial plants for sale in the garden centres. Annuals provide cheap, low-cost gardening, and they are fast growers – being some of the quickest plants to give a good show of colour. They sit so comfortably in mixed borders adding a sparkle of colour where the summer perennials are over. The secret of growing them and getting a long lasting display is dead-heading.


In this early evening photo, taken on a cloudy day, the yellows gleam and glow, attracting attention as if unwilling to fade out of the ‘limelight’.



This huge but graceful, over-wintered Nicotiana mutabilis (grown from seed) is full of bees in the day and very sweetly scented in the evening. Bright ‘Spanish Flag’ Ipomoea lobata is beginning to display above the Nicotiana.
‘And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.’
                              From  John Keats’ ‘To Autumn’.

A friend of ours has just started bee-keeping in her garden. I wonder how this year’s honey will be? Hopefully some bee-keeper is benefiting from my flowers.


The rudbeckias are clearly the most obvious ‘in-your-face’ contributors to my garden at the moment.  I grow R. fulgida and the annual R. hirta  varieties but the stars of the late summer–early autumn show are the large clumps of R ‘Goldsturm’.  Even after flowering, their black seed heads make a striking feature in the winter border.

At our annual ‘Plant Swap’ held on our front driveway each September for neighbours and other gardeners in the village, the flowering offshoots of these irresistible, vigorous rudbeckias,  are always popular.


But there are quieter spots for contrast. This combination of ever popular Salvia Amistad and Cosmos ‘Purity’ goes well together.

There’s Still Work to Do

“There ought to be gardens for all months in the year, in which, severally, things of beauty may be then in season.”
– Sir Francis Bacon

I agree entirely ! I’m already looking forward to the ‘encore’ as summer hangs on for a repeat performance into autumn, but also preparing for the winter show indoors, while keeping an eye on next spring and summer’s display as well !

So I mustn’t get carried away, there’s work to do. That’s the lasting pleasure of gardening. We’re always preparing for the next season.


Thank you for visiting. Enjoy your own gardening yourself.






7 thoughts on “A Blaze of Glory

  1. Very uplifting to see these beautiful photos from your garden . I will keep coming back for another look !
    Enjoyed reading your post too.
    Thanks .


  2. Richard, what a delight your garden is! I love the mix of annuals and grasses and perennials in your photos. I love annuals too – I grow mine from seed as many are rarely available in nurseries and there is so much more variety available. Plus, I get to garden in the cold of February that way 🙂


    1. Thank you. I’ve specially loved annuals ever since I worked in our family seed business years ago. They provide great opportunities for trying out new plants virtually for free. I’m glad you too, busy yourself in the winter sowing annuals for the coming summer. I also sow some in autumn for winter flowers indoors and for an early start for others next year. Did you see my old post on this in December last year.(‘When the garden Comes indoors’)?

      Liked by 1 person

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